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Candidates competing for the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination continue to make health care a central focus of their platforms, with former Vice President Joe Biden releasing a new plan on the issue. Over the weekend, candidates campaigned in critical early states. They're facing harsh criticism from President Trump -- and some are responding. Lisa Desjardins reports.
It was another busy weekend on the campaign trail for the more than 20 candidates vying for the Democratic presidential nomination.
And, as Lisa Desjardins reports, the debate on health care reform took center stage.
The 2020 Democratic candidates are trying to run on their own terms.
Starting over makes no sense to me at all.
For former Vice President Joe Biden, today, that meant releasing his health care plan. It would add a so-called public option, allowing all Americans to buy into a Medicare-like program run by the government.
He previewed the plan this weekend in New Hampshire.
I admire the rest of the field, from Bernie to Elizabeth to Kamala, who want Medicare for all. And I would build on the Affordable Care Act, and I would make sure that anyone — there was a public option.
That drew ire from Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders.
In a tweet today, Sanders knocked the former V.P., pointing to his former boss, President Obama, and how Obama called Sanders' Medicare for all a good idea.
As for the trail, this weekend, a tale of key states; 10 2020 hopefuls addressed a friendly crowd in Iowa Sunday.
Sen. Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn.:
We can do better, America, when it comes to infrastructure.
More than 1,000 caucus-goers turned out in balmy weather for the annual Iowa Progress Corn Feed. With just over six months until the caucuses, candidates strove to appeal to widely.
I want to make sure that, no matter who you are, whether you live in a big city or a small town, no matter what your background is, that you can have those kind of opportunities, too.
In the next state to vote, New Hampshire, no big stage, instead, backyards, as candidates worked retail politics. Former Texas Congressman Beto O'Rourke pitched his universal early education plan at a house in Manchester:
We will ensure that school starts not you're 4 or 5 years old in kindergarten, but when you're 3 or 4 years old in pre-K, universal across the United States of America.
And in swing state Pennsylvania, in Philadelphia, the activist left met for the annual Netroots Conference.
Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren was met with cheers ahead of a wide-ranging panel.
We love you, Liz!
Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass.:
I love you, too!
Also confronting candidates, increased challenges from President Trump, calling Democrats socialists or communists, weak on security.
In Iowa, South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg said Democrats need to stand their own ground.
If we embrace a left-wing agenda, the president is going to say we're socialists and we're for open borders. If we adopt a conservative agenda, the president is going to say we're socialists and we're for open borders.
So we might as well just stand up for what we believe in and take it from there.
For the "PBS NewsHour," I'm Lisa Desjardins.
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Lisa Desjardins is a correspondent for PBS NewsHour, where she covers news from the U.S. Capitol while also traveling across the country to report on how decisions in Washington affect people where they live and work.
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