Agency, 13 September : Democratic presidential front-runner Joe Biden clashed with progressive challengers Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders on healthcare in a debate on Thursday, defending Obamacare and pushing them to be honest about the cost of their plans.
With the top 10 Democratic candidates sharing the debate stage for the first time, they focused more on their shared opposition to Republican President Donald Trump and pared back some of the bickering that marked the first two debates this summer.
Biden was sharper and more aggressive than in either of the first two debates, when he came under frequent attack for his record on race and criminal justice during his long tenure in the U.S. Senate.
But like the first two debates, the Democrats were quick to leap into battle on healthcare, the issue that has ignited the most heated disagreements in the campaign for the party’s nomination to face Trump in the November 2020 election.
Biden, who served as vice president for eight years under Barack Obama, said he would build on Obama’s landmark 2010 Affordable Care Act, popularly known as Obamacare. He accused Warren and Sanders of wanting to tear it down with Medicare for All, a proposed government-run healthcare program that would eliminate private insurance.
Warren, a U.S. senator from Massachusetts who has moved into second behind Biden in many opinion polls of the Democratic race, praised Obama’s healthcare efforts but said more was needed.
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