Dem debate: Elizabeth Warren targets Trump, says big donors like Gordon Sondland getting plum posts is 'nothing but corruption'
The Massachusetts senator said she will try to convince her Republican colleagues in Senate to convict Donald Trump if the House impeached him. She then slammed the practice of rewarding donors with ambassadorial posts.
The fifth Democratic debate in the 2020 primary race took place in Atlanta on Thursday, November 20. Ten candidates made it to the debate this time, down from 12 from the last time. The debate, hosted by MSNBC and the Washington Post at Tyler Perry Studios, featured an all-women line-up of moderators, including MSNBC anchors Andrea Mitchell and Rachel Maddow, Washington Post White House reporter Ashley Parker and NBC News White House correspondent Kristen Welker.
'How do big donors become ambassadors?'
The first question that was thrown at the candidates was about the ongoing impeachment hearings against President Donald Trump. Warren was the first to answer to a question whether she would try to convince her colleagues in the Senate that Trump deserved to be convicted if the House impeached him.
Warren said “Of course, I will” adding that she was shocked to see the influence that US Ambassador the European Union Gordon Sondland has in the affairs. She said big donors get plum ambassadorial posts and said it was nothing but corruption and she was going to put an end to it.
Warren also referred to the play of money in politics. Answering Maddow's question, she said: “But I want to add one more part based on today’s testimony and that is how did Ambassador Sondland get there. You know, this is not a man who had any qualifications except one. He wrote a check for a million dollars,” she said. “And that tells us about what’s happening in Washington, the corruption.”
“I’ve taken a pledge. Anyone who wants to give me a big donation, don’t ask to be an Ambassador because I’m not going to have that happen. I asked everyone who’s running for president to join me in that. And not a single person has so far,” Warren continued.
On Wednesday, November 20, Sondland dropped a bombshell during his testimony before the House that a "quid pro quo" with Ukraine had indeed taken place.
Ten participants at fifth Democratic Debate
The 10 participants of the latest debate were former vice president Joe Biden, Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren, Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders, South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg, California Senator Kamala Harris, New Jersey Senator Cory Booker, billionaire Tom Steyer, Minnesota Senator Amy Klobuchar, Hawaii Representative Tulsi Gabbard and entrepreneur Andrew Yang.
While former Texas Representative Beto O’Rourke has withdrawn from the race, former Housing and Urban Development Secretary Julian Castro failed to make himself eligible for the event. The candidates needed to secure at least 165,000 individual donors and reach three percent in four DNC (Democratic National Committee)-approved surveys or five percent in two DNC-approved polls from four earlier primary and caucus states.