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Debate moves from Phoenix to DC over coronavirus concerns

From left, Democratic presidential candidates Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., and former Vice President Joe Biden, participate in a Democratic presidential primary debate at the Gaillard Center, Tuesday, Feb. 25, 2020, in Charleston, S.C., co-hosted by CBS News and the Congressional Black Caucus Institute. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)
March 12, 2020 - 12:32 PM

WASHINGTON - The Democratic National Committee is moving Sunday's presidential debate from Arizona to Washington because of concerns about the coronavirus.

The party had already announced that the debate between Joe Biden and Bernie Sanders would be held without a live audience. Now the location is changing over concerns about cross-country travel.

In addition, Univision anchor Jorge Ramos no longer will moderate the debate because he was in proximity to a person who was in direct contact with another individual who tested positive for the virus. The DNC says Ramos is not symptomatic.

The debate will be the first one-on-one contest between Biden and Sanders.

The coronavirus has already disrupted other aspects of the presidential campaign, with the Democratic contenders and President Donald Trump cancelling rallies on the advice of public health officials who have cautioned against people attending large events.

For most people, the new coronavirus causes only mild or moderate symptoms, such as fever and cough. For some, especially older adults and people with existing health problems, it can cause more severe illness, including pneumonia. The vast majority of people recover from the new virus.

Sanders is 78, while Biden is 77. The president is 73.


Catch up on the 2020 election campaign with AP experts on our weekly politics podcast, “Ground Game.”

News from © The Associated Press, 2020
The Associated Press

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