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Amanda Northrop/Vox

The best argument for each of the 2020 Democratic frontrunners

The Democratic primary started with the biggest and most diverse field of contenders ever. It’s been winnowed down since then, but voters remain divided on the best choice to face off against President Trump in November.

Vox does not endorse candidates. But Vox writers have made what they see as the best case for each frontrunner, defined in most instances as a candidate who passed 10 percent in the national polling averages.

Here are their arguments.


Bernie Sanders can unite Democrats and beat Trump in 2020

by Matthew Yglesias

Amanda Northrop/Vox

Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders is best known for his calls for a political revolution. But Sanders himself, Vox’s Matthew Yglesias argued in January, is more pragmatic than his critics give him credit for, unorthodox in important ways on foreign and monetary policy, and uniquely capable of unifying the Democratic Party against Trump.

Read or watch the full argument.


Joe Biden is the only candidate with a real shot at getting things done

by Laura McGann

Amanda Northrop/Vox

The next president will need the Senate. Former Vice President Joe Biden is the best person to deliver it to them, Laura McGann argued in January. The 2018 election results showed that swing voters will be key, and Biden offers Democrats their best shot at winning up and down the ballot, while still promising a governing agenda that would make him the most progressive president in recent history.

Read or watch the full argument.


Elizabeth Warren had the best shot at a transformative presidency

by Ezra Klein

Amanda Northrop/Vox

Elizabeth Warren dropped out of the presidential race on March 5. But in January, Ezra Klein wrote about the three best arguments for nominating her: She understands America’s problems better than anyone else in the field. She understands how to wield the powers of the regulatory state. And she had the clearest plan for making ambitious governance possible again.

Read or watch the full argument.


Mike Bloomberg and his billions were what Democrats needed to beat Trump

by Emily Stewart

Amanda Northrop/Vox

Former New York City Mayor Mike Bloomberg dropped out of the presidential race on March 4, the day after Super Tuesday. In February, Emily Stewart argued that Bloomberg was a competent, accomplished alternative to the chaos and bravado of President Trump. There was evidence to suggest he could win a general election — and that his billions would help Democrats hold the House and take back the Senate too.

Read the full argument.


Pete Buttigieg was more electable than Bernie Sanders — and more progressive than you think

by Dylan Matthews

Amanda Northrop/Vox

Pete Buttigieg dropped out of the race on March 1. In February, Dylan Matthews argued the former mayor of South Bend, Indiana, best united the qualities Democrats say they want in a nominee. He advocates a form of liberalism that’s more ambitious than Obama’s, and has a sophistication about political institutions and structures that Obama sometimes lacked.

Read or watch the full argument.


Amy Klobuchar could have won where Democrats need to win in 2020

by Kay Steiger

Amanda Northrop/Vox

Sen. Amy Klobuchar dropped out of the race for the Democratic nomination on March 2. The original case for Klobuchar came down to the Electoral College, Kay Steiger argued in February. Whoever runs against Trump will want to win over rural voters in key Midwest states. Klobuchar, from Minnesota, had a convincing record on this score.

Read the full argument.

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