DNC moves Biden-Sanders debate to Washington, D.C.

Ballotpedia's Daily Presidential News Briefing
March 13, 2020: Joe Biden and Bernie Sanders will debate in Washington, D.C., on Sunday. Joe Biden hires Jen O’Malley Dillon as his campaign manager.

Each Friday, we highlight a presidential candidate’s key campaign staffer.

Katrina Pierson is a Republican staffer with experience in political communications. She previously worked on Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign. Pierson graduated from the University of Texas at Dallas with a bachelor’s degree in biology in 2006.

Previous campaign work:

  • 2016 Donald Trump presidential campaign, national spokeswoman

Other experience:

  • 2013-present: Pierson Consulting Group, president and CEO
  • 2017-2018: America First Policies, spokesperson
  • 2016-2017: Donald Trump Transition Committee, senior advisor
  • 2014-2015: Tea Party Leadership Fund, spokesperson
  • 2014-2015: Texas Tribune, TribTalk columnist
  • 2014-2015: ShePAC, advisory board member
  • 2012-2015: WFAA-TV, opinion commentator
  • 2011-2013: America’s Web Radio, talk show host
  • 2011-2012: ASG Technologies, director of corporate affairs
  • 2009-2011: Baylor Health Care System, practice administrator
  • 2008: InVentiv Health, pharmaceuticals

Notable Quote of the Day

“You could make a strong argument that the only thing that matters to the president’s reelection now is getting the response [to the coronavirus pandemic] correct. No rally is going to save you if you are judged as having failed as the president.”

– Scott Jennings, former political aide to President George W. Bush


  • Joe Biden and Bernie Sanders will participate in the eleventh Democratic presidential primary debate on Sunday. The Democratic National Committee (DNC) announced on Thursday that the debate would take place in Washington, D.C., rather than Phoenix, Arizona, due to concerns about the coronavirus and cross-country travel. The DNC also said that Ilia Calderón would replace Jorge Ramos as a moderator because Ramos had contact with an individual with coronavirus.
  • Both Biden and Sanders have told their campaign staff to work remotely. The campaigns will focus on digital outreach rather than large events or canvassing.
  • The Biden campaign requested Secret Service protection.
  • Reps. Ann Kirkpatrick (Ariz.), Gregorio Sablan (N.M.I.), and David Loebsack (Iowa) endorsed Biden on Thursday.
  • Former Barack Obama aide and Beto O’Rourke campaign manager, Jen O’Malley Dillon, is joining Biden’s operation as campaign manager. She replaces Greg Schultz, who is remaining with the campaign in another role.
  • Biden gave a speech about the coronavirus and his plan to address the outbreak on Thursday. He called for free testing, development of a vaccine, paid sick leave, and aid for affected communities, among other policies.
  • Tulsi Gabbard addressed the coronavirus pandemic in a video on Twitter, where she said free tests should be made available and cruise ships should not be permitted to dock in any state.
  • Gabbard also called for a temporary universal payment of $1,000 to every adult American.
  • Sanders also gave a speech about the coronavirus on Thursday, saying there should be a moratorium on evictions and foreclosures, guaranteed unemployment insurance, and free access to treatment.

What We’re Reading

Flashback: March 13, 2016

Hillary Clinton said she supported capital punishment in limited cases during a CNN town hall.

Click here to learn more.