Mar 12, 2020 - Politics & Policy

DNC announces Biden-Sanders debate will be moved to D.C. due to coronavirus

Photo: Win McNamee/Getty Images

Sunday's Democratic debate between Joe Biden and Bernie Sanders will be moved from Phoenix, Arizona, to CNN's studio in Washington, D.C., and feature no live audience due to concerns about the spread of the coronavirus.

Why it matters: The primary season, in which the two main candidates are in their late 70s, must find ways to adapt in the face of a global pandemic.

What they're saying:

"Out of an abundance of caution and in order to reduce cross-country travel, all parties have decided that the best path forward is to hold Sunday’s debate at CNN’s studio in Washington, D.C., with no live audience.
In addition, the DNC, CNN and Univision recently learned that Univision anchor and moderator Jorge Ramos was in proximity with someone who was in direct contact with a person that tested positive for coronavirus. Both Mr. Ramos and the person he was in contact with are in good health and symptom free. Despite being cleared by medical professionals and out of an abundance of caution, Jorge has decided to step aside from participating in the upcoming March 15 democratic debate. Univision’s News Anchor Ilia Calderón will moderate the debate in his place.
Our number one priority has and will continue to be the safety of our staff, campaigns, and all those involved in the debate."
— DNC communications director Xochitl Hinojosa

Go deeper

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