Seth Abramson @SethAbramson @Newsweek columnist. Analyses @BBC. NYT bestselling author of Proof of Conspiracy (bit.ly/2kP6FkZ). Next: Citizen Journalist (Macmillan). Professor. Attorney. Jun. 28, 2019 1 min read

If you'd seen no polls, I think the field would look like this—of those in the debates:

1⃣ Warren, Harris, Buttigieg, Castro, Booker
2⃣ O'Rourke, Klobuchar, Biden, Sanders, Swalwell, De Blasio
3⃣ Gillibrand, Bennet, Hickenlooper, Gabbard, Delaney, Ryan, Inslee, Yang, Williamson

1/ If you reduced the field to 10 candidates—assuming, as I think we can, that none of the four non-debating pols would make the Top 10—I think it'd be Warren, Harris, Buttigieg, Castro, Booker, O'Rourke, Klobuchar, Biden, Sanders, and *one* of Swalwell, De Blasio, or Gillibrand.

2/ To be clear, I'm only giving an opinion (and not endorsing anyone) and only basing that opinion on what America has seen from the candidates so far in terms of the "complete package." That doesn't mean that the other 14 candidates don't have their unique strengths/good ideas.

3/ One thing I think the commentators are getting quite wrong is acting like the first Democratic debate somehow wasn't as consequential as this one. I think that's totally off—as I score it, 5 of the "top" 7 Democratic candidates were debating on the *first* night, not this one.


You can follow @SethAbramson.



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