Democratic Debate: Live updates from Night 1 in July

Ten candidates face off, including leading progressives Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren at center stage.
Image: The second Democratic debate, hosted by CNN, is taking place over two nights in Detroit with 10 candidates on stage each night.
The second Democratic debate, hosted by CNN, is taking place over two nights in Detroit with 10 candidates on stage each night.Chelsea Stahl / NBC News

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Night 1 of the second Democratic debate is in the books. The gloves came off over health care as the moderates on the stage took aim at leading progressives Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren.

Look back on all the action as it happened, and for all of the night's fact checks, go here. Join us tomorrow for Night 2 of the debate, which will begin at 8 p.m. ET. Download the NBC News app for full coverage of both nights of the second Democratic debate.

Live Blog

Early battle shows Bernie’s strong position on health care

Candidates positioning themselves in the center are taking shots at Sanders more so than Warren on health care.

Bernie wants to be the candidate most associated with health care, and some of these candidates are making his job slightly easier. It doesn't hurt that he wrote the Medicare for All bill.

Warren ducks questions on middle-class taxes

Elizabeth Warren was a standout in her first debate in Miami. And she’s keeping up that reputation tonight in Detroit — with one early exception.

CNN’s Jake Tapper twice asked Warren if she agreed with Bernie Sanders that, to pay for single-payer health care that she supports, taxes would have to go up for the middle class.

And twice Warren ducked the direct question.

She answered that “giant corporations” and “the wealthy” will pay more, and that middle-class Americans will pay less for their out-of-pocket costs.

But she didn’t admit that those lower out-of-pocket costs and zero co-pays come by raising taxes on all Americans, as Sanders’ plan does.

Attacks flying left and right

Our data reporter Nigel Chiwaya is tracking all sorts of attacks at tonight's debate. As of 8:48 p.m. the candidates have attacked Donald Trump 6 times, Mitch McConnell 0 times, Wall Street and corporations 6 times and the "ultra rich" 4 times. Follow all of the attacks here

Buttigieg stakes out a place in the middle of the health care fight

Buttigieg used a familiar argument from the campaign trail in the health care fight. He says that people should stop with political triangulation in getting universal health care passed because Republicans are going to call them socialists anyway.

“So let’s just stand up for the right policy and then go out there and defend it,” he said.

This debate Buttigieg finally gets a chance to focus on policy. Last debate, he grappled with a police shooting in his hometown.

Health care brawl breaks out over first 20 minutes of debate

It’s clear lower-polling candidates like Delaney and Bullock went into tonight’s debate dead-set on hitting Sanders and Warren over their health care positions. This debate has split the stage into three factions. On one end, Sanders and Warren. On the other end, Delaney, Bullock and Ryan. Trying to stake out ground in the middle are Klobuchar, O’Rourke, Buttigieg and Williamson. Hickenlooper hasn’t gotten a chance to join in. But candidates who are at 1 percent or less in the polls are really trying to land punches on Sanders and Warren.

Bernie shows off his Spanish... on Twitter

No Spanish on stage yet but on Twitter, Sanders tweets a message about health care.

Sanders says health care is 'not a business!’

Delaney, touting his career experience in the health care field, said the other candidates on the stage didn’t have a sufficient understanding of the “health care business.”

Sanders, off camera, was quick with a retort: “It’s not a business!”

Public option health care proposals more popular than single-payer

As this health care conversation gets underway, here's a look at how popular some of the competing ideas are. 

A recent poll conducted by the Kaiser Family Foundation found that 51 percent of Americans over all support "a national health plan, sometimes called 'Medicare for all,' in which all Americans would get their insurance from a single government plan." (In other words, a plan that would eliminate private insurance entirely in favor of solely a government run plan, as Bernie Sanders has been arguing for.)  That's down from a high of 59 percent last year. 

The same survey found that more Americans — 65 percent — back a more moderate public option proposal that would offer a Medicare-like plan to those who want it while keeping private insurance in place. Among the candidates who support that kind of plan are Beto O'Rourke and Pete Buttigieg.

Sanders: ‘Jake, your question is a Republican talking point.’

Health care has proven to be a heated issue right out the gate — and not just between the candidates. 

“Jake, your question is a Republican talking point,” Sanders said in response to Tapper asking about how to pay for Medicare for All. The crowd responded to the comment with a round of applause.

“And by the way, the health care industry will be advertising tonight on this program,” Sanders added, before Tapper said his time was up.

Not Warren's style of debate?

Warren dodges chance to attack Sanders’ health care plan

That was a skillful dodge from Elizabeth Warren. Jake Tapper asked her if her plan was different from Sanders’ plan, but she pivoted back to the big issue of the profit-making in health care.

Warren and Sanders are close friends and aides have already told NBC News to not expect fireworks between the two. I wonder if they will lean on each other during the rest of the debate to defend attacks on their political vision.