Democratic Debate #1: Television Coverage

The GDELT Project and the Internet Archive are partnering together to help better understand which soundbites and speakers are dominating the political discourse on television. In particular, we are working to translate the social media concepts of "memes" and "going viral" to the television world. Using the Internet Archive's Television News Archive, which monitors major American and international television stations in realtime, along with an archive of more than 735,000 television shows since 2009, we scan all monitored television programming for audio fingerprints of each soundbite of selected major political speeches and identify all excerpts of those soundbites across television news shows in the following days. The tool we use, audfprint, developed by the Laboratory for the Recognition and Organization of Speech and Audio at Columbia University, scans the audio track of each show, so it is not dependent on closed captioning, which is extremely noisy and entirely absent from many foreign language broadcasts. The tool is extremely sensitive, able to detect brief excerpts even when they are overdubbed by a commentator and/or other sound effects.

Today we are excited to unveil our latest application: the Democratic Presidential Prime Debate, held at 8:30PM EST on October 13, 2015 at the Wynn Las Vegas hotel in Las Vegas, Nevada. The entire transcript of the debate was hand-segmented into soundbites and all television news programming monitored by the Internet Archive for 24 hours following the debate were scanned for any excerpt of those soundbites, which are displayed below. Browse the entire transcript below and click on any passage to see how many times and where it was excerpted, and click on the video icon to the left of each passage or the list of shows mentioning the excerpt in the bottom right to view a brief video clip of the soundbite. These numbers only reflect those television shows monitored by the Internet Archive, representing only a small set of television stations in the United States. Thus, these numbers are far from exhaustive in terms of measuring the total reach of the debate, but offers a powerful glimpse into which pieces of the speech resonated and where.

What you are seeing here is a first glimpse of a whole new way of exploring television, using enormously powerful computer algorithms as a new lens through which to explore the Internet Archive's massive archive of television news to create for the first time a way of tracking what's "going viral" on television. Quite literally this project took an hour-long political speech, broke it into soundbites, and scanned two weeks of national television news programming for any excerpt of any of those soundbites. Imagine the future possibilities for tracking how soundbites move between social and mainstream media, and the future ability to apply these techniques to explore soundbites in online video!

Visualizing the Debate

The final results of this analysis are available through the interface below. By default the entire debate transcript is shown, but you can use the search box below to narrow to only soundbites containing a particular keyword or that were aired on a particular station or show. The timeline below shows how many times each soundbite was broadcast. As you scroll through the transcript, the top-most paragraph will automatically highlight in yellow and the corresponding time period will highlight in the timeline below,l while the sidebar to the right of the transcript will display key statistics about that passage, along with a list of links to view previews of every identified mention of that soundbite on a news show. The timeline allows you to zoom into any section to see it more clearly - click anywhere in the middle of the graph on the white background (not the bottom of the graph) and drag with your mouse to highlight a section of the timeline - a "reset zoom" button will appear at the top right of the timeline display to zoom back out to the original view. While zoomed in you can hold down the shift key on your keyboard and click and drag to pan the timeline forward/backwards.

Filter the Debate Transcript

By default the entire debate transcript is displayed below. You can use the options below to filter to only a subset of the debate, such as only those lines appearing on a particular television station or show, or only those lines containing a certain keyword/phrase or spoken by a particular person. Only lines matching all of your criteria below are included.

Television Station

Television Show

Transcript Keyword


(Displays a grid of piecharts, one per television network, that shows the percentage of matching soundbites on that network from each candidate.)

(SANDERS) Today in America, we have more people in jail than any other country on Earth. African-American youth unemployment is 51 percent. Hispanic youth unemployment is 36 percent. It seems to me that instead of building more jails and providing more incarceration, maybe -- just maybe -- we should be putting money into education and jobs for our kids.(APPLAUSE)

(COOPER) Secretary Clinton?

(CLINTON) And I want to do more to help us balance family and work. I believe in equal pay for equal work for women, but I also believe its about time we had paid family leave for American families and join the rest of the world.(APPLAUSE)

(COOPER) Thank you, all. It is time to start the debate.Are you all ready?(APPLAUSE)

(COOPER) You supported his trade deal dozen of times. You even called it the gold standard. Now, suddenly, last week, youre against it.Will you say anything to get elected?

(CLINTON) Well, actually, I have been very consistent. Over the course of my entire life, I have always fought for the same values and principles, but, like most human beings -- including those of us who run for office -- I do absorb new information. I do look at whats happening in the world.

(CLINTON) You know, take the trade deal. I did say, when I was secretary of state, three years ago, that I hoped it would be the gold standard. It was just finally negotiated last week, and in looking at it, it didnt meet my standards. My standards for more new, good jobs for Americans, for raising wages for Americans.

(CLINTON) Im a progressive. But Im a progressive who likes to get things done. And I know...(APPLAUSE) to find common ground, and I know how to stand my ground, and I have proved that in every position that Ive had, even dealing with Republicans who never had a good word to say about me, honestly.

(SANDERS) Well, were gonna win because first, were gonna explain what democratic socialism is.

(CLINTON) But we are not Denmark. I love Denmark. We are the United States of America. And its our job to rein in the excesses of capitalism so that it doesnt run amok and doesnt cause the kind of inequities were seeing in our economic system.

(CLINTON & COOPER ) CLINTON: But we would be making a grave mistake to turn our backs on what built the greatest middle class in the history...COOPER: Senator Sanders?CLINTON: ... of the world.(APPLAUSE)

(COOPER) Governor Chafee, youve been everything but a socialist. When you were senator from Rhode Island, you were a Republican. When you were elected governor, you were an independent. Youve only been a Democrat for little more than two years. Why should Democratic voters trust you wont change again?

(CHAFEE) Did you hear what I said? On the issues. I have not changed on the issues. I was a liberal Republican, then I was an independent, and now Im a proud Democrat. But I have not changed on the issues.

(COOPER) For a decade, you said that holding gun manufacturers legally responsible for mass shootings is a bad idea. Now, you say youre reconsidering that. Which is it: shield the gun companies from lawsuits or not?

(SANDERS) Lets begin, Anderson, by understanding that Bernie Sanders has a D-minus voting rating (ph) from the NRA. Lets also understand that back in 1988 when I first ran for the United States Congress, way back then, I told the gun owners of the state of Vermont and I told the people of the state of Vermont, a state which has virtually no gun control, that I supported a ban on assault weapons.

(COOPER & SANDERS ) COOPER: Do you want to shield gun companies from lawsuits?SANDERS: Of course not.

(SANDERS) This was a large and complicated bill. There were provisions in it that I think made sense. For example, do I think that a gun shop in the state of Vermont that sells legally a gun to somebody, and that somebody goes out and does something crazy, that that gun shop owner should be held responsible? I dont.

(SANDERS) On the other hand, where you have manufacturers and where you have gun shops knowingly giving guns to criminals or aiding and abetting that, of course we should take action.

(COOPER) Secretary Clinton, is Bernie Sanders tough enough on guns?

(CLINTON) No, not at all. I think that we have to look at the fact that we lose 90 people a day from gun violence. This has gone on too long and its time the entire country stood up against the NRA. The majority of our country...(APPLAUSE)... supports background checks, and even the majority of gun owners do.

(CLINTON) Senator Sanders did vote five times against the Brady bill. Since it was passed, more than 2 million prohibited purchases have been prevented. He also did vote, as he said, for this immunity provision. I voted against it. I was in the Senate at the same time.

(CLINTON) It wasnt that complicated to me. It was pretty straightforward to me that he was going to give immunity to the only industry in America. Everybody else has to be accountable, but not the gun manufacturers. And we need to stand up and say: Enough of that. Were not going to let it continue.(APPLAUSE)

(SANDERS) As a senator from a rural state, what I can tell Secretary Clinton, that all the shouting in the world is not going to do what I would hope all of us want, and that is keep guns out of the hands of people who should not have those guns and end this horrible violence that we are seeing.

(OMALLEY) Now, to try to transform their grief, they went to court, where sometimes progress does happen when you file in court, but in this case, you want to talk about a -- a rigged game, Senator? The game was rigged. A man had sold 4,000 rounds of military ammunition to this -- this person that killed their daughter, riddled her body with five bullets, and he didnt even ask where it was going.

(OMALLEY) And not only did their case get thrown out of court, they were slapped with $200,000 in court fees because of the way that the NRA gets its way in our Congress and we take a backseat. Its time to stand up and pass comprehensive gun safety legislation as a nation.(APPLAUSE)

(WEBB) So we do need background checks. We need to keep the people who should not have guns away from them. But we have to respect the tradition in this country of people who want to defend themselves and their family from violence.

(CLINTON) Well, I recall very well being on a debate stage, I think, about 25 times with then Senator Obama, debating this very issue. After the election, he asked me to become Secretary of State.

(CLINTON) He valued my judgment, and I spent a lot of time with him...(APPLAUSE) the Situation Room, going over some very difficult issues.

(SANDERS) Let me just respond to something the secretary said. First of all, she is talking about, as I understand it, a no-fly zone in Syria, which I think is a very dangerous situation. Could lead to real problems.

(OMALLEY) I believe that, as president, I would not be so quick to pull for a military tool. I believe that a no-fly zone in Syria, at this time, actually, Secretary, would be a mistake.

(OMALLEY) You have to enforce no-fly zones, and I believe, especially with the Russian air force in the air, it could lead to an escalation because of an accident that we would deeply regret.

(OMALLEY) I support President Obama. I think we have to play a long game, and I think, ultimately -- you want to talk about blunders? I think Assads invasion of Syria will be seen as a blunder.

(CLINTON) Let me say -- because theres a lot of loose talk going on here -- we are already flying in Syria just as we are flying in Iraq.

(CLINTON) The president has made a very tough decision. What I believe and why I have advocated that the no-fly zone -- which of course would be in a coalition -- be put on the table is because Im trying to figure out what leverage we have to get Russia to the table.

(COOPER & CLINTON) CLINTON: You know, diplomacy is not about getting to the perfect solution. Its about how you balance the risks.COOPER: Thank you.

(COOPER & CLINTON) CLINTON: And I think we have an opportunity here -- and I know that inside the administration this is being hotly debated -- to get that leverage to try to get the Russians to have to deal with everybody in the region and begin to move toward a political, diplomatic solution in Syria.COOPER: Thank you, Secretary.

(WEBB) Look, lets start -- Ive been trying to get in this conversation for about 10 minutes -- lets start with why Russia is in Syria right now. There are three strategic failings that have allowed this to occur. The first was the invasion of Iraq, which destabilized ethnic elements in Iraq and empowered Iran.

(WEBB) I will say this, coming from the position that Ive come from, from a military family, with my brother a marine, my son was a marine in Iraq, I served as a marine, spending five years in the Pentagon, I am comfortable that I am the most qualified person standing up here today to be your commander-in-chief.

(CHAFEE & COOPER) CHAFEE: Its certainly the chaos in the Middle East. Theres no doubt about it.COOPER: OK.CHAFEE: And it all started with the Iraq invasion.

(COOPER & OMALLEY) COOPER: Governor OMALLEY?OMALLEY: I believe that nuclear Iran remains the biggest threat, along with the threat of ISIL; climate change, of course, makes cascading threats even worse.

(COOPER) Secretary Clinton, the greatest national security threat?

(CLINTON) I -- I think it has to be continued threat from the spread of nuclear weapons, nuclear material that can fall into the wrong hands. I know the terrorists are constantly seeking it, and thats why we have to stay vigilant, but also united around the world to prevent that.

(COOPER) Senator Sanders, greatest national security threat?

(SANDERS) The scientific community is telling us that if we do not address the global crisis of climate change, transform our energy system away from fossil fuel to sustainable energy, the planet that were going to be leaving our kids and our grandchildren may well not be habitable. That is a major crisis.

(COOPER & WEBB) COOPER: Senator Webb?WEBB: Our greatest long-term strategic challenge is our relation with China. Our greatest day-to-day threat is cyber warfare against this country. Our greatest military-operational threat is resolving the situations in the Middle East.

(CLINTON) Well, Ive taken responsibility for it. I did say it was a mistake. What I did was allowed by the State Department, but it wasnt the best choice.

(CLINTON) And I have been as transparent as I know to be, turning over 55,000 pages of my e-mails, asking that they be made public. And youre right. I am going to be testifying. Ive been asking to testify for some time and to do it in public, which was not originally agreed to.

(COOPER) Secretary Clinton, Secretary Clinton, with all due respect, its a little hard -- I mean, isnt it a little bit hard to call this just a partisan issue? Theres an FBI investigation, and President Obama himself just two days ago said this is a legitimate issue.

(CLINTON) Well, I never said it wasnt legitimate. I said that I have answered all the questions and I will certainly be doing so again before this committee. But I think it would be really unfair not to look at the entire picture.

(COOPER& CLINTON & SANDERS) COOPER: Thank you.CLINTON: But Ill be there. Ill answer their questions. But tonight, I want to talk not about my e-mails, but about what the American people want from the next president of the United States.(APPLAUSE)COOPER: Senator Sanders?SANDERS: Let me say this.(APPLAUSE)

(SANDERS) Let me say -- let me say something that may not be great politics. But I think the secretary is right, and that is that the American people are sick and tired of hearing about your damn e-mails.(APPLAUSE)

(CLINTON) Thank you. Me, too. Me, too.

(SANDERS) You know? The middle class -- Anderson, and let me say something about the media, as well. I go around the country, talk to a whole lot of people. Middle class in this country is collapsing.

(SANDERS) We have 27 million people living in poverty. We have massive wealth and income inequality. Our trade policies have cost us millions of decent jobs. The American people want to know whether were going to have a democracy or an oligarchy as a result of Citizens Union. Enough of the e-mails. Lets talk about the real issues facing America.(APPLAUSE)

(CLINTON) Thank you, Bernie. Thank you.(APPLAUSE)

(COOPER) I know that plays well in this room. But I got to be honest, Governor Chafee, for the record, on the campaign trail, youve said a different thing. You said this is a huge issue. Standing here in front of Secretary Clinton, are you willing to say that to her face?

(CHAFEE) Absolutely. We have to repair American credibility after we told the world that Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction, which he didnt. So theres an issue of American credibility out there.

(CHAFEE) So any time someone is running to be our leader, and a world leader, which the American president is, credibility is an issue out there with the world. And we have repair work to be done. I think we need someone that has the best in ethical standards as our next president. Thats how I feel.

(COOPER & CLINTON) COOPER: Secretary Clinton, do you want to respond?CLINTON: No.

(COOPER) Governor -- Governor...(APPLAUSE)Governor OMALLEY...(APPLAUSE)Governor, its popular in the room, but a lot of people do want to know these answers.Governor OMALLEY, you expressed concern on the campaign trail that the Democratic Party is, and I quote, being defined by Hillary Clintons email scandal.You heard her answer, do you still feel that way tonight?

(SANDERS) Black lives matter.(CHEERING)

(SANDERS) And the reason -- the reason those words matter is the African American community knows that on any given day some innocent person like Sandra Bland can get into a car, and then three days later shes going to end up dead in jail, (APPLAUSE)

(SANDERS) or their kids are going to get shot. We need to combat institutional racism from top to bottom, and we need major, major reforms in a broken criminal justice system...(APPLAUSE)

(SANDERS) And in my view what we need to do is create millions of jobs by rebuilding our crumbling infrastructure; raise the minimum wage to $15 an hour; pay equity for women workers; and our disastrous trade policies, which have cost us millions of jobs; and make every public college and university in this country tuition free.(APPLAUSE)

(CLINTON) Well, my plan is more comprehensive. And frankly, its tougher because of course we have to deal with the problem that the banks are still too big to fail. We can never let the American taxpayer and middle class families ever have to bail out the kind of speculative behavior that we saw.

(CLINTON) So Im with both Senator Sanders and Governor OMALLEY in putting a lot of attention onto the banks. And the plan that I have put forward would actually empower regulators to break up big banks if we thought they posed a risk. But I want to make sure were going to cover everybody, not what caused the problem last time, but what could cause it next time.

(COOPER & SANDERS) COOPER: Senator Sanders, Secretary Clinton just said that her policy is tougher than yours.SANDERS: Well, thats not true.(LAUGHTER)COOPER: Why?

(SANDERS) Let us be clear that the greed and recklessness and illegal behavior of Wall Street, where fraud is a business model, helped to destroy this economy and the lives of millions of people.(APPLAUSE)

(SANDERS) Ill tell him.In my view, Secretary Clinton, you do not -- Congress does not regulate Wall Street. Wall Street regulates Congress.(APPLAUSE)And we have gotta break off these banks. Going to them...

(CLINTON& SANDERS & WEBB ) CLINTON: So...SANDERS: ...and saying, please, do the right thing...CLINTON:, thats not what...SANDERS: kind of naive.CLINTON: ...that -- I think Dodd-Frank was a very...WEBB: Anderson, I need to jump in (inaudible).

(OMALLEY) Anderson, look, this is -- the big banks -- I mean, once we repealed Glass-Steagall back in the late 1999s (ph), the big banks, the six of them, went from controlling, what, the equivalent of 15 percent of our GDP to now 65 percent of our GDP.

(OMALLEY) And -- (inaudible) right before this debate, Secretary Clintons campaign put out a lot of reversals on positions on Keystone and many other things. But one of them that we still have a great difference on, Madam Secretary, is that you are not for Glass-Steagall.

(OMALLEY) You are not for putting a firewall between this speculative, risky shadow banking behavior. I am, and the people of our country need a president whos on their side, willing to protect the Main Street economy from recklessness on Wall Street.We have to fulfill...

(CLINTON) Well, you know, everybody on this stage has changed a position or two. Weve been around a cumulative quite some period of time.(LAUGHTER)

(CLINTON) You know, we know that if you are learning, youre gonna change your position. I never took a position on Keystone until I took a position on Keystone.

(WEBB) But if you want to look at what has happened, if we look at the facts in terms of how were going to deal with this, since that crash, in the last 10 years, the amount of the worlds capital economy that Wall Street manages has gone from 44 percent to 55 percent.

(WEBB) That means the Wall Street money managers are not risking themselves as the same way the American people are when theyre going to get their compensation. Theyre managing money from all over the world.We have to take that into consideration when were looking at ways to regulate it.

(CHAFEE) The Glass-Steagall was my very first vote, Id just arrived, my dad had died in office, I was appointed to the office, it was my very first vote.

(COOPER) Are you saying you didnt know what you were voting for?

(CHAFEE) Id just arrived at the Senate. I think wed get some takeovers, and that was one. It was my very first vote, and it was 92-5. It was the...

(CHAFEE) Certainly, ending the wars. Weve got to stop these wars. You have to have a new dynamic, a new paradigm. We just spent a half-billion dollars arming and training soldiers, the rebel soldiers in Syria. They quickly join the other side. We bombed the...(CROSSTALK)

(CHAFEE) Id like to finish my question -- my answer.And also we just bombed a hospital. Weve had drone strikes that hit civilian weddings. So I would change how we -- our approach to the Middle East. We need a new paradigm in the Middle East.

(OMALLEY) I would follow through on the promise that the American people thought we made as Democratic Party, to protect the Main Street economy from recklessness on Wall Street.

(CLINTON) Well, I think thats pretty obvious. I think being the first woman president would be quite a change from the presidents weve had up until this point, including President Obama.

(OMALLEY) I respect what Secretary Clinton and her husband have done for our country. But our country needs new leadership to move forward.

(COOPER & BASH) COOPER: Dana Bash?BASH: Secretary Clinton, you now support mandated paid family leave.

(CLINTON & BASH) CLINTON: Mm-hmm.BASH: Carly Fiorina, the first female CEO of a Fortune 50 company, argues, if the government requires paid leave, it will force small businesses to, quote, hire fewer people and create fewer jobs.

(CLINTON & BASH) CLINTON: Well, Im surprised she says that, because California has had a paid leave program for a number of years. And its...BASH: Its on the federal level.

(CLINTON) Well, but all -- well, on a state level, a state as big as many countries in the world. And it has not had the ill effects that the Republicans are always saying it will have. And I think this is -- this is typical Republican scare tactics. We can design a system and pay for it that does not put the burden on small businesses.

(CLINTON) I remember as a young mother, you know, having a baby wake up who was sick and Im supposed to be in court, because I was practicing law. I know what its like. And I think we need to recognize the incredible challenges that so many parents face, particularly working moms.

(CLINTON) Well, look, you know, when people say that -- its always the Republicans or their sympathizers who say, You cant have paid leave, you cant provide health care.

(CLINTON) They dont mind having big government to interfere with a womans right to choose and to try to take down Planned Parenthood. Theyre fine with big government when it comes to that. Im sick of it.(APPLAUSE)You know, we can do these things.(APPLAUSE)

(SANDERS) Yeah, Dana, heres the point: Every other major country on Earth, every one, including some small countries, say that when a mother has a baby, she should stay home with that baby. We are the only major country. That is an international embarrassment that we do not provide family -- paid family and medical leave.(APPLAUSE)

(COOPER & OMALLEY) COOPER: Governor OMALLEY?OMALLEY: Anderson, in our state, we actually expanded family leave. And I have to agree with Secretary Clinton and Senator Sanders.

(OMALLEY) My wife, Katie, is here with our four kids. And, man, that was a juggle when we had little kids and -- and keeping jobs and moving forwards. We would be a stronger nation economically if we had paid family leave.

(OMALLEY) That tells me we are moving to a more connected, generous, and compassionate place, and we need to speak to the goodness within our country.(APPLAUSE)

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