2020 Democratic Debate

Rachel Maddow… Melissa Villaseñor

Elizabeth Warren… Kate McKinnon

Kamala Harris… Maya Rudolph

Pete Buttigieg… Colin Jost

Bernie Sanders… Larry David

Amy Klobuchar… Rachel Dratch

Joe Biden… Woody Harrelson

Cory Booker… Chris Redd

Andrew Yang… Bowen Yang

Tom Steyer… Will Ferrell

Michael Bloomberg… Fred Armisen

Tulsi Gabbard… Cecily Strong

[Starts with MSNBC intro]

Announcer: And now MSNBC’s special coverage of the democratic debate.

[Cut to the MSNBC debate set] [Cheers and applause] [Cut to Rache Maddow]

Rachel Maddow: Hello. I am Rachel Maddow and we are live from Tyler Perry studios in Atlanta. So, hello and good afternoon. I want to start the debate with the question on everyone’s mind—who can beat Donald Trump?

[Cut to the people competing]

Elizabeth Warren: Me, me, me. My hand—my hand went up first.

[Cut to Rachel Maddow]

Rachel Maddow: That’s not how it works, but go ahead.

[Cut to Elizabeth Warren]

Elizabeth Warren: Right, right, right. Look, I know in past debates, I’ve been accused of being overambitious, right? I’ve got mom hosting thanksgiving energy. I’m a little overwhelmed ‘cause I thought ten people were coming and now there’s 30 million. But I promise dinner will be ready if you just get out of the kitchen and stop asking questions. And of course, this thanksgiving I will be cooking my specialty. Maybe don’t say it. The food of my ancestors. Should I say it? I’m going to say it—Maize.

[Cut to Kamala Harris]

Kamala Harris: Oh, that’s a good one, Liz.

[Cut to Rache Maddow]

Rachel Maddow: Sounds like you’re in a good mood tonight, senator Harris.

[Cut to Kamala Harris]

Kamala Harris: Oh, I am. I am. The fun is back, baby. America’s fun aunt. I’m also America’s cool aunt. The C—you know what? Let’s not do that. Tonight, I’m not going to worry about the polling numbers. I’m just going to have fun and see if I can get some viral moments. Mama needs a ‘gif’. Gonna tell my kids this is Michelle Obama. [Cut to a twitter meme] [Cut to Rache Maddow]

Rachel Maddow: Mayor Pete, you’re looking adorable tonight in your little suit.

[Cut to Pete Buttigieg]

Pete Buttigieg: Thank you. Thank you. It’s from my first communion.

[Cut to Rache Maddow]

Rachel Maddow: You’re polling at zero with black voters. Any idea why?

[Cut to Pete Buttigieg]

Pete Buttigieg: Maybe just because of like this.

[Cut to Rache Maddow]

Rachel Maddow: Senator Sanders, you’re looking—

[Cut to Bernie Sanders]

Bernie Sanders: Yeah, yeah, yeah. [Cheers and applause] I want to begin by thanking you all for the well wishes. I did have a heart attack-ack-ack-ack. So, you ought to know by now, I’m doing better than ever. Doctors were surprised I made it. And I’m very proud of the fact that I was the first heart attack patient to show up in the emergency room in a city bus.

[Cut to Rache Maddow]

Rachel Maddow: Let’s go now to senator Klobuchar.

[Cut to Amy Klobuchar] [Cheers and applause]

Amy Klobuchar: Thank you Rachel. I know some of you think I’m shaking because I’m nervous, but that’s just my signature quivering bang. It’s my spidey sense that tingles whenever we need a moderate to say, “Girl, we can’t pay for that.”

[Cut to Rache Maddow]

Rachel Maddow: Vice president Biden, you’re flashing your teeth at me?

[Cut to Joe Biden] [Cheers and applause]

Joe Biden: I just want everyone to know America, I see you. And I see the faces you all make when I talk. You’re scared. Scared I’ll say something off-color or even worse—on color. What I want you to know is you should be scared because I’m always one second away from calling Cory Booker ‘Barack’.

[Cut to Cory Booker]

Cory Booker: Okay, I’d like to respond, but first because this is the only time I’ll be talking I just want to say black church, barber shops, greens, beans, tomatoes, potatoes. Now to vice president Biden, I was stunned to hear you don’t support the legalization of marijuana. In fact, rehearsed joke, I thought you were high when you said it.

[Cut to Joe Biden]

Joe Biden: Let me tell you a story from my youth, or maybe from a movie or a cartoon. It was with a buddy of mine who got so whacked on the sticky-icky kush, he says, “I’ve a great idea. We ought to go to white castle.” Next thing you know, Kumar and I are driving around high as kites with Neil Patrick Harris and that’s before he was gay. That’s why I never puffed the stuff.

[Cut to Rache Maddow]

Rachel Maddow: We also want to welcome Andrew Yang who I can tell is already mad he hasn’t talked yet.

[Cut to Andrew Yang]

Andrew Yang: No, not at all. It’s me Andrew Yang. I want to say what up to my yang gang? Hey, what do you say we get a yang gang bang going, huh? I want to take this opportunity to announce my VP, the new Tesla cyber truck.

[Cut to Rache Maddow]

Rachel Maddow: We also want to welcome Tom Steyer.

[Cut to Tom Steyer]

Tom Steyer: Hi, guys. I’m billionaire Tom Steyer. And I’m running for president for a simple reason—it’s fun. And it gets me out of the house.

[Cut to Rache Maddow]

Rachel Maddow: I’m sorry, Mr. Steyer. My producers are telling me you have to blink.

[Cut to Tom Steyer]

Tom Steyer: I have to do what?

[Cut to Rache Maddow]

Rachel Maddow: Blink. You have to blink at some point.

[Cut to Tom Steyer]

Tom Steyer: Oh, no, I do not. And I will not.

[Cut to Michael Bloomberg]

Michael Bloomberg: Did somebody say billionaire?

[Cut to Rache Maddow]

Rachel Maddow: No. Mayor Bloomberg, how did you get in here?

[Cut to Michael Bloomberg]

Michael Bloomberg: Well, I tipped the doorman $30 million.

[Cut to Rache Maddow]

Rachel Maddow: Does this mean you are officially running for president?

[Cut to Michael Bloomberg]

Michael Bloomberg: I don’t know. Maybe. Maybe not. I’d be heard to beat. I’d love to see Trump supporters come up with a conspiracy theory  about a Jewish billionaire with his own media company. Good luck making that stick.

[Cut to Rache Maddow]

Rachel Maddow: And let’s introduce underdog candidate and tonight’s villain, Tulsi Gabbard.

[Cut to Tulsi Gabbard]

Tulsi Gabbard: Thank you, Rachel. What an honor it is to be on this stage with my fellow candidates. I want you to know that I smell your fear and it makes me stronger. I’m wearing the white suit of your fallen hero Hillary Clinton. Now fight me, cowards.

[Cut to Rache Maddow]

Rachel Maddow: Senator Harris, would you like to respond?

[Cut to Kamala Harris]

Kamala Harris: Tulsi, I’m going to be real with you. You scare the hell our of me. You just gave me Ermahgerd, Gersbermps. [Posing for a meme] [Cut to Rache Maddow]

Rachel Maddow: Our next question is for senator Klobuchar. Do you think you can get the funding to stay in this race?

[Cut to Amy Klobuchar]

Amy Klobuchar: I know I can. I’ve got $17,000 from ex-boyfriends. All I had to do was threaten to come back in their lives.

[Cut to Rache Maddow]

Rachel Maddow: Okay. That brings us to tonight’s next topic which is health care.

[Cut to Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders. Bernie Sanders presses the buzzer first. Elizabeth Warren is trying the buzzer more than one time.] [Cut to Rache Maddow]

Rachel Maddow: Okay. I don’t know how you got buzzers, but Bernie rang in first.

[Cut to Bernie Sanders]

Bernie Sanders: Here’s my plan for health care. No co-pay. No out of pocket. The only thing that comes out of my pockets are tissues, receipts, loose cough drops, a movie stub for ‘Florence Foster Jenkins’ which is so-so. And of course, the little button in the baggie that comes with the pants. Most people throw it out. Do yourself a favor. Hold onto it. You never know.

[Cut to Rache Maddow]

Rachel Maddow: Mr. Steyer, you look like you have something to say.

[Cut to Tom Steyer]

Tom Steyer: I want to speak directly to you, America. [Tom Steyer starts walking towards the camera] Health care is important, but housing affects everything.—where you sleep, where you shop, where you get your shoes shined, where you buy jewels, where you raise peacocks. Am I relatable?

[Cut to Rache Maddow]

Rachel Maddow: Mr. Steyer, I’m gonna need you to take a step back.

[Cut to Tom Steyer]

Tom Steyer: Sorry. Am I too close?

[Cut to Joe Biden]

Joe Biden: Did somebody say too close? Brother, like your style. Look, I’m supported by that same coalition that elected Obama. Blafrican Americans. Even the Mexitinos and the Chorientals. Heck, the only black woman ever elected to the senate endorsed me.

[Cut to Kamala Harris]

Kamala Harris: Excuse me? No, no, Joe. There have been two black women elected to the senate and that second black woman— it me.

[Cut to a tiktok video where Kamala Harris is doing her dance] [Cut to Michael Bloomberg]

Michael Bloomberg: Is there still time for me to come in late and ruin everything?

[Cut to Rache Maddow]

Rachel Maddow: No. We have to move on to closing statements.

[Cut to Michael Bloomberg]

Michael Bloomberg: Wait, I need to quickly throw in some Spanish, because Miguel Bloomberg is En Guego.

[Cut to Rache Maddow]

Rachel Maddow: Okay. That counts as good-bye for you. We’ll now move on to Mayor Buttigieg.

[Cut to Pete Buttigieg]

Pete Buttigieg: America, I know I can do this because my supporters are a diverse coalition from young to old, gay to straight, white to eggshell. Thank you.

[Cut to Rache Maddow]

Rachel Maddow: Tulsi Gabbard, time for your closing statement.

[Cut to Tulsi Gabbard]

Tulsi Gabbard: I have no interest in those Dalmatian puppies. [laughing evilly] I yield my time.

[Cut to Rache Maddow]

Rachel Maddow: Senator Klobuchar?

[Cut to Amy Klobuchar]

Amy Klobuchar: Look, I could say a lot about the issues we have talked about tonight, but the sad thing is you’re not listening to a word I’m saying because you’re just watching my hair dance on my forehead. Excuse me, my eyes are down here, not up here.

[Cut to Rache Maddow]

Rachel Maddow: Senator Warren that brings us to you.

[Cut to Elizabeth Warren]

Elizabeth Warren: Hey, hey, here’s the thing, guys. It’s November and it’s cussing season. You’re single in your late 30s and I’m a solid option. If it’s Marry, “F”, kill I’m aware I’m not the “F”, but I’m definitely not the kill. So come on, America, put a ring on it.

[Cut to Rache Maddow]

Rachel Maddow: Senator Sanders?

[Cut to Bernie Sanders]

Bernie Sanders: As many of you know, a lot of my opponents like to throw the word “Socialist” around for me. But let me ask you, is it fair that only the top 2% often get a free Biscotti with their coffee? We would all love a free Biscotti. You dip it. You dunk it and it’s delicious. So, if it’s socialism, sign me up. Tell me this. Is it fair that when the top 2% want to turn off the lights in their bedroom all they have to do is clap? They’ve got the clappers. Shouldn’t we all have clappers? Either everybody has a clapper or nobody has a clapper, and that’s the America I want to live in.

[Cheers and applause] [Cut to Rache Maddow]

Rachel Maddow: Vice president Joe Biden?

[Cut to Joe Biden]

Joe Biden: The hearings have made it clear. That Donald Trump doesn’t want me to be the nominee. Vladimir Putin doesn’t want me to be the nominee. Nobody in America wants me to be the nominee. But I am confident I can win the election in 2016.

[Cut to Rache Maddow]

Rachel Maddow: And senator Harris, your closing statement?

[Cut to Kamala Harris]

Kamala Harris: The democratic party needs to stop taking black women for granted, specifically one black woman—me. I mean ,come on. You said you would vote for me. [Poses for a meme] [Cut to Rache Maddow]

Rachel Maddow: Well, that’s all the time we have. Tom, take us out.

[Cut to the speakers]

Tom Steyer: [High-fiving everyone] Good game, good game. Good game, good game.

CNN Equality Town Hall Cold Open

Anderson Cooper… Alex Moffat

Billy Porter

Cory Booker… Chris Redd

Aidy Bryant

Pete Buttigieg… Colin Jost

Daniel… Kyle Mooney

Elizabeth Warren… Kate McKinnon

Beck Bennett

Julian Castro… Lin-Manuel Miranda

Joe Biden… Woody Harrelson

Bowen Yang

[Starts with CNN Town Hall Equality America intro]

Announcer: One stage, no room. Last one standing gets the oh, so, illusive – a CNN Town Hall Equality America with Anderson Cooper.

[Cut to the stage of CNN Town Hall Equality America intro] [Cheers and applause] [Cut to Anderson Cooper]

Anderson Cooper: Good evening. I’m Anderson Cooper. This Town Hall will discuss issues affecting our community. LGBTQ and girls to make pride about them. And since we’ll never do this again, we’re going to go all-out. So, to help us announce the candidates, it’s Billy Porter from “Pose”.

[Cut to Billy Porter] [Cheers and applause]

Billy Porter: Hello! Hello. Yes. Hello, Anderson. Category is Vanderbilt Dynasty, news realness.

[Cut to Anderson Cooper and Billy Porter]

Anderson Cooper: Yes, god. Now Billy, please introduce our first candidate.

[Cut to Billy Porter]

Billy Porter: Okay. Yes, he may live in the projects, but ladies, he ain’t no project. It’s Cory Booker.

[Cory Booker walks in and stands next to Anderson Cooper] [Cheers and applause]

Anderson Cooper: Thank you for being here senator Booker.

Cory Booker: My girlfriend was in ‘rent’ so yeah, I get it.

Anderson Cooper: First question.

[Cut to Aidy Bryant]

Aidy Bryant: Hi senator. My question is, have you always been supportive of the gay community?

[Cut to split screen. Cory Booker on left and Aidy Bryant on right]

Cory Booker: Absolutely, yes. I have nothing but respect since day one.

Aidy Bryant: But in 1992–

Cory Booker: Uh-oh.

Aidy Bryant: –you published an op-ed where you said some very derogatory things about the gay community.

Cory Booker: Now, I don’t want to think– I don’t want you to think I’m dodging the question. So I’m going to go now.

[Cut to Anderson Cooper]

Anderson Cooper: Our next candidate is playing with a home field advantage.

[Cut to Billy Porter]

Billy Porter: Yes! Representing the house of Booty-gig, it’s mayor Pete!

[Cut to Pete Buttigieg walks in and stands next to Anderson Cooper] [Cheers and applause]

Pete Buttigieg: Thank you, thank you very much. I went to Harvard, but they don’t teach you where to put your arms.

Anderson Cooper: Our next question comes from Daniel.

Daniel: Yeah. How do you respond to those who say you’re not gay in the right way?

[Cut to split screen. Pete Buttigieg at left and Daniel at right.]

Pete Buttigieg: You know, I’ve heard that. But there’s no wrong way to be gay. Unless you’re Ellen this week.

[Cut to Pete Buttigieg and Anderson Cooper]

Anderson Cooper: Any other questions?

Pete Buttigieg: And actually, Anderson, I have one . [Cut to Pete Buttigieg] Why am I not winning this? I’m a veteran, under the legal retirement age and when I talk it makes sense. Is something wrong with me.

[Cut to Pete Buttigieg and Anderson Cooper]

Anderson Cooper: No- no. You’re great guy, just like, as a friend, not for president.

Pete Buttigieg: Oh, yeah. That makes sense. \
Anderson Cooper: Can I call you an Uber?

Pete Buttigieg: Oh no. I drove.

[Buttigieg leaves]

Anderson Cooper: Well, I hope you didn’t fill up on snacks, because now it’s time for the meat and potatoes.

[Cut to Billy Porter]

Billy Porter: Warrening – warrening— the sentator is here! She’s got a plan for the future! It’s Elizabeth Warren!

[Cut to Elizabeth Warren getting in to the stage]

Elizabeth Warren: Thank you, Billy. Thank you, Anderson. I am so excited to be here. I had some apples slices backstage and they’re hitting me like cocaine! You know, I am not a lesbian, but all the ingredients are there. Let’s go.

[Cut to Elizabeth Warren and Anderson]

Anderson Cooper: Who would like to ask a question?

[Cut to Beck Bennett]

Beck Bennett: So, senator, let’s say you’ve been on the campaign trial.

[Cut to split screen. Elizabeth Warren at left and Beck Bennett at right]

Elizabeth Warren: Yeah, I have.

Beck Bennett: How would you respond if someone said to you, “I’m old-fashioned and my faith teaches me that marriage is between one man and one woman?”

Elizabeth Warren:  Look, well, I’m going to assume it’s a guy asking.

[Cut to Billy Porter]

Billy Porter: Oh, snap! The library is open, and you about to get read!

[Cut to Elizabeth Warren]

Elizabeth Warren: I would say, sir, tell me your bus stop, because I want to know where you get off. What else? What else? If someone doesn’t want to serve gay people at their small business I bet that’s not the only thing that’s small. And when people say, gay and in France, people shouldn’t be included in civil rights protections. Well, I wish their parents had used protection.

[Music starts palying and Elizabeth Warren starts dancing] [Elizabeth Warren opens her wig while dancing. She is bald.] [Cut to Billy Porter]

Billy Porter: Yea, yea! Work it out, work it out! And now from the house of urban deliciousness, it’s Julian Castro.

[Cut to Julian Castro walks to the stage and stands beside Anderson Cooper] [Cheers and applause]

Julian Castro: So happy to be here, and look, I even got a participation ribbon. Now, come on. Cut to the chase. When do the ‘Queer eyes’ guys come out? I want to go rock climbing with Karamo.

Anderson Cooper: This isn’t “Queer Eye” senator.

Julian Castro: Actually it’s secretary.

Anderson Cooper: I wouldn’t tell people that. Okay, next question.

[Cut to Melissa Villaseñor]

Melissa Villaseñor: My question is if elected what will you do to bring queer voices to your cabinet?

[Cut to Julian Castro]

Julian Castro: Well, first of all, gracias. As a democrat, I want to apologize for not being gay, but I promise to do better in the future. However, I am Latino, which we can all agree is something. Look, I’m young. I’m diverse. I’m Latinobama. Let’s get the hashtag going #latinobama. Please.

[Cut to Julian Castro and Anderson Cooper]

Anderson Cooper: All right. Anything else you’d like to say?

[Cut to Julian Castro]

Julian Castro: You know there was once another man who left his mark on this nation’s history, but he never became president. Hoe how so?

[Cut to Julian Castro and Anderson Cooper]

Anderson Cooper: Really?

Julian Castro: Come on!

Anderson Cooper: Thank you, secretary.

Julian Castro: Remember to vote for me for vice president. I mean president.

[Cut to Billy Porter]

Billy Porter: Yes, yes, yes! And now, the Delaware daddy who’s only vice is the Choo Choo Train! It’s vice president Biden, y’all!

[Cut to Joe Biden walks in and stands beside Anderson] [Cheers and applause]

Joe Biden: Hi, Anderson. Good to see you. I am so excited to be here.

Anderson Cooper: [Pushing Joe Biden slightly away from himself] Too close, Mr. Vice President. Too close. How are you tonight?

[Cut to Joe Biden]

Joe Biden: I’m glad we’re doing this. The vast majority of people in America are not homophobic. They’re just scared of gay people.

[Cut to Joe Biden and Anderson]

Anderson Cooper: That’s what homophobic means, Joe.

Joe Biden: Look, you know me. I believe we’re all equal, whether you’re gay, lesbie, transgender or queer, you’re okay with Joe.

Anderson Cooper: I’m going to give you a second to reset and go to an audience question.

[Cut to split screen. Joe Biden at left and Bowen Yang at right]

Bowen Yang: Hi, Mr. Vice President.

Joe Biden: Oh, look at you. If I told you, you had a beautiful body, would you hold it against me?

Bowen Yang: Sure. Mr. Vice President, how can you defend your past support of don’t ask, don’t tell?

[Cut to Joe Biden]

Joe Biden: I’m glad you asked that question and let me answer by telling you a false memory. Now, the year was 19 [thinking] 26, and I was in Downtown Dover with my father. And we see two very well dressed men, very well dressed men. You know what I mean by well dressed? [Cut to Joe Biden and Anderson] Right? Anyway, who’s nervous about this story? Show of hands.

[Cut to everybody raising their hands] [Cut to Joe Biden and Anderson]

Anderson Cooper: We’re all nervous, Joe.

Joe Biden: Then I’ll keep going, [Cut to Joe Biden] and these men turned the corner and kissed. And I turned to my daddy and said, “What the huh?” And he said, “Baby, they were born this way.” And that was Delaware 19 Clickity Clack.

[Cut to Joe Biden and Anderson]

Anderson Cooper: Okay, Joe. Thank you for being here.

Joe Biden: And thank you for everyone that played tonight but we all know I’m your guy. So in closing, [Joe Biden walks close to Anderson] ever been kissed by a VP before? [Joe Biden kisses Anderson]

Anderson Cooper: I think we’re done here. And –

[Cut to everybody]

Everybody: Live from New York, it’s Saturday Night.