2020 Election

Beyond the Shouting: These 10 Questions Show Who You Think Won the Nevada Debate

2 minute read

Political debates have no scoreboard but thousands of referees. Who won the Feb. 19 Democratic face-off in Las Vegas? Appropriately in a democracy, the answer depends on who you are and what you care about.

The ninth Democratic debate, the first to include former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, was the most contentious so far, with candidates attacking one another from all angles.

This simple quiz can help you get past the drama to determine which candidate’s message you prefer. For each panel, you’ll see the question the moderator asked and two randomly chosen responses edited for brevity with the names removed. Just choose which answer you prefer.

As you go, the interactive will narrow down the pairings more precisely to candidates you align with the most. You will see a response from each of the six participants at least twice.


All responses are drawn from the final transcript and abridged to capture the argument as concisely as possible. The questions are sometimes amalgams of several highly similar questions posed or reposed during the course of a discussion on one topic. Candidates are paired after the first round of responses using a combination of total approval points and the Elo rating system. Design by Karen Werling.

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Write to Chris Wilson at chris.wilson@time.com