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ABC News Will Now Hold Just a One-Night Democratic Debate

As the Democratic field of White House wannabes starts to shrink, so too do opportunities for TV-news outlets to showcase them in clashes with each other.

ABC News said Thursday it would televise just one night of debates among Democratic hopefuls for 2020, as opposed to the two nights it had previously planned. ABC’s September 12th coverage will feature ten candidates, reflecting the fact that a good chunk of those campaigning for the job had failed to reach the next level of support to participate in the event, organized by the Democratic National Committee.

The event will also be televised by Spanish-language broadcaster Univision. The two networks will telecast the event between 8:00 p.m. and 11:00 p.m. eastern from Texas Southern University.

George Stephanopoulos,  David Muir, and Linsey Davis from ABC News and and Jorge Ramos from Univision will moderate the debate, which is slated to include former Vice President Joe Biden, Senator Cory Booker, Pete Buttigieg, Julián Castro, Senator Kamala Harris, Senator Amy Klobuchar, Beto O’Rourke, Senator Bernie Sanders, Senator Elizabeth Warren and Andrew Yang.

Recent debates have been big audience-grabbers for both NBCUniversal and CNN, which televised events with the broader field of Democratic contenders. ABC will face competition: a Thursday-night NFL broadcast from Fox.

ABC will feature coverage before and after the event as well, often via digital venues. ABC News’  “Nightline” will on September 11 kick off a series of spotlights on some of the leading 2020 Democratic presidential candidates,  interviewing friends, family, former classmates and faculty and others who knew the candidates during their formative years. ABC News will also provide coverage and analysis of the debate beginning Monday, September 9 on ABC News Live, the network’s streaming outlet, with pre- and post-show content also scheduled.


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