The signature domestic proposal by the leading progressive candidates for the Democratic presidential nomination came under withering attack from moderates Tuesday in a debate that laid bare the struggle between a call for revolutionary policies and a desperate desire to defeat President Donald Trump. Standing side by side at center stage, Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren slapped back against their more cautious rivals who ridiculed “Medicare for All” and warned that “wish-list economics” would jeopardize Democrats’ chances for taking the White House in 2020. “I don’t understand why anybody goes to all the trouble of running for president of the United States just to talk about what we really can’t do and shouldn’t fight for,” said Elizabeth Warren, a Massachusetts senator, decrying Democratic “spinelessness.” Bernie Sanders, a Vermont senator, agreed: “I get a little bit tired of Democrats afraid of big ideas.” A full six months before the first votes are cast, the tug-of-war over the future of the party pits pragmatism against ideological purity as voters navigate a crowded Democratic field divided by age, race, sex and ideology. The fight with the political left was the dominant subplot on the first night of the second round of Democratic debates, which was notable as much for its tension as its substance. Twenty candidates are spread evenly over two nights of debates Tuesday and Wednesday. The second night features early front-runner Joe Biden, the former vice president, as well as Kamala Harris, a California senator. While much of the debate was…
"I don't understand why anybody goes to all the trouble of running for president of the United States just to talk about what we really can't do and shouldn't fight for," said Elizabeth Warren, a Massachusetts senator, decrying Democratic "spinelessness."
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