On Thursday evening, CNN announced that it will hold a health care debate Monday night with Senators Bernie Sanders (I/D-VT), Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), Lindsey Graham (R-SC), and Bill Cassidy (R-LA).
The network is advertising the debate as one on “the fight over Obamacare.” However, CNN executive director of political programming Mark Preston said on Twitter that the debate would focus on the Graham-Cassidy health care bill. The reason this distinction comes into play is Senators Graham and Cassidy are both in favor of repealing the Affordable Care Act, more commonly known as Obamacare, while Senator Klobuchar is largely in favor of Obamacare, with some fixes, and Senator Sanders has advocated for single-payer health care.
However while Klobuchar and Sanders disagree on how to improve the ACA, both are unified in opposition to the Graham-Cassidy bill with Sanders calling it “disastrous.” CNN’s press release on the event says that the four will debate “the merits of the [Graham-Cassidy] plan,” so while the debate stays on that topic the sides will be numerically even.
The debate will be a town hall format; one that CNN has frequently utilized for its special political programming. This town hall will air from Washington, D.C., be moderated by chief Washington correspondent and anchor Jake Tapper and chief political correspondent Dana Bash, and air for 90 minutes.