Local Democrats look ahead to Democratic Debate in Charleston

VIDEO: Local Democrats look ahead to Democratic Debate in Charleston

CHARLESTON COUNTY, SC (WCSC) - Charleston will soon be in the national spotlight again, for the Democratic Debate on Sunday. Democratic presidential candidates, Hillary Clinton, Bernie Sanders and Martin O' Malley will face off at the Gaillard Center in downtown Charleston.

"This is a great weekend for Democrats we're really excited about the energy that's here, and we're really proud that it's here in Charleston," says Chairman of the Charleston County Democratic Party, Brady Quirk-Garvan.

He says nearly 2,000 people will attend the Democratic debate at the Gaillard Center. Tickets were reserved for NBC who's hosting this debate, the state party and there was also a raffle for the general public.

"All of the campaigns are hosting debate watch parties, so their is overflow seating for people to be able to watch," says Quirk-Garvan.

Sanders and Clinton are leading the polls very closely. To qualify for the debate candidates needed to have at least five percent support in recent national polls or in Iowa, New Hampshire, or South Carolina. O' Malley just hit the mark with five percent approval in Iowa.

Thursday night the Republicans were in the spotlight, but now millions will be watching as the Democrats get their turn to make some of their final pitches before the first primaries just weeks away.

"With the Republicans you get a lot of bluster and hot air, but these Democrats that will be debating Sunday we really think they're going to offer some great solutions and we're looking forward to hearing them," he said.

In the debate we can expect to hear the candidates talk about income inequality, policing issues and gun control among other things.

"We're excited to show off all the excited Democrats here in Charleston," says Quirk-Garvan.

The debate will be airing Sunday at 9 p.m. on NBC and on YouTube. Many local campaigns will be hosting events leading up to their watch parties. 

Hillary Clinton supporters will be at the Embassy Suites on Meeting street.
Bernie Sanders supporters will be at the Charleston Music Hall.
Martin O' Malley supporters will host a post debate party at Craftsmen's Kitchen and Tap House on Cumberland Street.

For more information about these events and times visit: https://www.facebook.com/CharlestonCountyDemocrats/?fref=ts