Washington – Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders have agreed to a Democratic presidential debate next week in New York, ensuring a high-stakes televised showdown ahead of the state’s influential primary.
The two campaigns confirmed Monday the candidates would appear at the debate April 14 in Brooklyn, New York, putting the Democratic rivals onstage together before New York’s April 19 primary.
Clinton, a former New York senator, holds a significant lead over Sanders among delegates, but the Vermont senator is hoping a win in Tuesday’s primary in Wisconsin will build more momentum against Clinton in her adopted home state. Sanders has won five of the past six states to hold contests.
The announcement by CNN that it would host the debate ended days of acrimonious negotiations, with both sides accusing each other of playing games with the proposed forum. Sanders’ campaign said it agreed to move a major New York City rally scheduled for April 14 to the night before so Sanders could attend the debate.
CNN said it will partner with Time Warner Cable’s NY1, a channel focused on New York news.
Both candidates have personal ties to the debate site. Sanders was born and raised in Brooklyn, while Clinton’s campaign’s headquarters is based in Brooklyn, about a mile from the debate site at the Brooklyn Navy Yard’s Duggal Greenhouse.
Democrats have held eight previous debates. This will be the first since March 9 in Miami.