Politics

CNN Debate Moderators Ask Zero Questions About National Debt

(BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP/Getty Images)

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Peter Hasson Senior Reporter

CNN debate moderators Jake Tapper, Dana Bash and Don Lemon asked a combined zero questions about the rapidly expanding national debt during the network’s two nights of debates Tuesday and Wednesday.

The moderators covered a range of topics including health care, immigration and climate change, but not the national debt, which currently sits above $22 trillion and is projected to continue growing.

The national debt’s absence from the CNN debates followed a similar pattern from NBC and MSNBC’s hosting of the first two Democratic debate nights in June. The NBC and MSNBC moderators also failed to ask any questions about the nation’s debt.

(Scott Olson/Getty Images)

CNN moderator Don Lemon speaks to the crowd attending the Democratic Presidential Debate at the Fox Theatre July 31, 2019 in Detroit, Michigan. (Scott Olson/Getty Images)

Former Democratic Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper, who took part in Tuesday night’s debate, briefly touched the subject, but only in passing.

Hickenlooper cited the debt as reason to oppose Trump’s trade war with China, saying, “you’re not going to win against China in a trade war when they’ve got 25 percent of our total debt.” (RELATED: 9 Radical Policies 2020 Democrats Are Pushing)

(Scott Olson/Getty Images)

CNN moderator Jake Tapper (Scott Olson/Getty Images)

The federal government is expected to run a $1 trillion deficit in 2019, according to projections the White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB) released earlier this month.

“If current laws generally remained unchanged, growing budget deficits would boost federal debt drastically over the next 30 years,” the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office (CBO) warned in a June report.

Follow Hasson on Twitter @PeterJHasson

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