The Democratic presidential debate was moderated by four women Wednesday night for the third time in U.S. history ― drawing praise from viewers who also noted that women made up the majority of the debate stage.
The debate in Atlanta, co-hosted by MSNBC and The Washington Post, was moderated by four journalists: Rachel Maddow and Andrea Mitchell of MSNBC, Washington Post White House reporter Ashley Parker, and NBC White House correspondent Kristen Welker.
Viewers applauded the historic all-female panel ― which was preceded twice, in 2016, when Gwen Ifill and Judy Woodruff moderated a Democratic debate and Trish Regan and Sandra Smith moderated a Republican presidential debate.
Of the 10 candidates on stage, four were women ― Sens. Kamala Harris (Calif.), Amy Klobuchar (Minn.) and Elizabeth Warren (Mass.), and Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (Hawaii).
Some Twitter users celebrated the questions asked by the moderators during this debate, highlighting how issues previously neglected ― such as paid family leave plans, child care, abortion legislation and housing ― were being brought up by the panel.
The panel was also cheered for its discipline and diplomacy, and for keeping the peace between candidates.
The moderators did, however, draw criticism for some questions, particularly when Maddow asked Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) whether he thought it appropriate that crowds at his rallies chanted “Lock him up” in regards to President Donald Trump.
Others felt that the moderators neglected some candidates and favored others.