This story was written by Steven Williamson, Daily Targum
To the skeptical American, politics have always been deemed a dirty business, so it was almost fitting that Thursday night's debate between democratic presidential candidates was held in Las Vegas -- Sin City.
Sen. Barack Obama, Sen. Hillary Clinton and Sen. John Edwards, top contenders for the democratic nomination, squared off over a myriad of issues, including social security, health care and the War in Iraq.
Gov. Bill Richardson, Rep. Dennis Kucinich, Sen. Chris Dodd and Sen. Joe Biden, all of who spoke to a more limited extent, joined the three candidates.
The tone was more critical than that of previous debates, as the sparring between the politicians intensified.
Most of the heat was centered on Clinton, who was grilled by both Edwards and Obama over her policy regarding the Iraq War and Social Security.
"[Clinton] said, standing beside me on the stage, that she would not do anything about the cap on Social Security taxes," Edwards said. "[But] she has said privately to people, because it's been reported in the press, that in fact she would consider raising that cap."
Clinton decried Edwards for what she called personal attacks and told the audience that such accusations missed thee central point of the debates.
"For [Edwards] to be throwing this mud and making these charges I think really detracts from what we're trying to do here tonight," Clinton said. "We need to put forth a positive agenda for America [and tell] people what [democrats are] going to do when we get the chance to go back to the White House."
The debate was broadcast nationally on CNN and caught the attention of several students at the University.
Rutgers University Democrats President Brett Tinder, a Livingston College junior, said while he felt it difficult to pick out the strongest candidate from Thursday night, Edwards, Clinton and Obama certainly impressed.
© 2007 Daily Targum via U-WIRE