Democratic Party presidential candidates will square off in Atlanta tonight for the fifth presidential primary debate.
According to the latest polling data, the top three candidates in the race are former Vice President Joe Biden (26%), Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren (20.8%) and Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders (17.8%).
While most of tonight’s debate will centre on domestic issues, the candidates are also likely to touch on foreign policy concerns, particularly those related to the Middle East. For instance, while each of the three frontrunners generally agree that US military forces should eventually completely withdraw from Afghanistan, each has a different approach to the issue.
Sanders, for example, wants to withdraw as quickly as possible, maintaining only a political presence in the country to assist in developing its economy and strengthening its central government. Warren has also called for a speedy withdrawal but has spoken less to the future of political relations between the two countries. Biden’s approach is most likely to resonate with the traditional, moderate party base—gradually withdrawing combat troops and leaving only a residual presence in the country for counterterrorism operations.
Regardless of which candidate ultimately becomes the nominee, Democrats in the race remain fairly united on a foreign policy approach that pursues diplomacy over military engagement.
Wake up smarter with an assessment of the stories that will make headlines in the next 24 hours. Download The Daily Brief.
Nick is the Director of the Daily Brief and a contributing Senior Analyst to it. An attorney, his areas of expertise include international law, international and domestic criminal law, security affairs in Europe and the Middle East, and human rights.