Jan 30, 2020

Health care and abortion are the top issues being searched in Iowa

Biden campaigns in Council Bluffs, Iowa on Jan. 29. Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

In Iowa over the past week, "abortion" and "health care" were the top searched issues in relation to all 2020 candidates that have qualified for the next Democratic debate, according to the latest Google Trends data.

Why it matters: Iowa's caucus-goers will set the first real test of candidates' appeal to voters in just five days. Winning a single pledged delegate from the caucuses will also allow any candidate to join the next debate.

Candidate's top-searched issue: "Abortion"

  • Former Vice Presidet Joe Biden
  • Former mayor Pete Buttigieg
  • Former tech executive Andrew Yang
  • Billionaire Tom Steyer

Candidate's top-searched issue: "Health care"

  • Sen. Amy Klobuchar
  • Sen. Elizabeth Warren
  • Sen. Bernie Sanders

Of note: Of these seven candidates, the only ones that Iowans searched for alongside "social security" were front-runners Biden, Sanders and Warren.

  • Yang, Buttigieg, Klobuchar, and Steyer were the only ones among the seven debate qualifiers to be searched alongside "climate change."

Background: Most candidates have suggested alternatives to Sanders' Medicare for All plan — which has no set price tag, but could cost trillions of dollars — to cast themselves as moderate alternatives on health care.

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Seven 2020 candidates took the stage at St. Anselm College in Manchester, N.H., on Friday, to debate issues including race, health care, the economy, Ukraine and electability, as they jockey for voters' support days before the nation's first primary on Feb. 11.

Why it matters: After the turmoil and error-riddled results of the Iowa caucuses, Sen. Bernie Sanders and former Mayor Pete Buttigieg are trying to edge ahead of each other, while other candidates are hoping for breakthrough moments to gain voters' support.

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Photo: Win McNamee/Getty Images

The attacks grew more direct and the fault lines more defined Friday night at the eighth Democratic debate, as candidates looked to either capitalize on their Iowa momentum or stop the bleeding four days before New Hampshire primary.

Why it matters: Pete Buttigieg has the chance to make a huge statement if he can pull off a victory in New Hampshire, a state that his fellow Iowa frontrunner Bernie Sanders won in a landslide in 2016. Joe Biden, meanwhile, seemed ready to concede at the outset of the debate: "I took a hit in Iowa, and I’ll probably take one here."