Flock Flies South: Democratic Presidential Candidates Debate in SC

January 30, 2004

The invasion of Iraq was the main focal point in the Democratic presidential debate as all seven candidates took to the stage in South Carolina five days before seven states vote in the 2004 campaign’s biggest day so far.

All seven Democratic Party candidates debated in South Carolina last night, six days before the South’s first primaries. South Carolina votes next Tuesday in the 2004 campaign’s biggest day yet. The same day there are primary elections in Delaware, Missouri, Arizona, North Dakota and Oklahoma, and caucuses in New Mexico.

The debate, which was moderated by NBC’s Tom Brokaw, remained civil with the candidates spending most of their time criticizing the foreign and domestic policies of the Bush administration instead of criticizing each other as they have done in the past.

The Iraq war dominated large parts of the evening, but there were few disagreements among the candidates. Senators John Edwards and John Kerry and Howard Dean all called for an independent commission to investigate the intelligence on which Bush argued that Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction.