Aug Sept 2016
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Bernie Sanders Stalls a Rachel Maddow-Hosted Democratic Debate

Rachel Maddow with Democratic candidates

No one knows whether there will be another Democratic debate added to the lineup before New Hampshire votes on February 9.

But if it happens, MSNBC's Rachel Maddow is probably partly to blame. The out news anchor is slated to co-host the event with Meet the Press moderator Chuck Todd, if it actually happens on February 4.

Maddow — who earlier this year hosted a Democratic forum in South Carolina attended by Hillary Clinton, Bernie Sanders and Martin O'Malley — has been rabble rousing when she's interviewed the candidates on her show. Maddow recently pressed Sanders, for example, on whether he would follow through on regular complaints that the Democratic National Committee scheduled too few debates and put them in terrible time slots, like the Sunday of a holiday weekend. 

Although it's Sanders who now looks like the one reluctant to join the extra debate, the Vermont senator had assured Maddow that he'd be up for one more meeting. 

“Well, count me in as one person — you know, if Secretary Clinton and Gov. O’Malley want to do it, I’m there," he said back on January 19. "I love debates. I think they are a way to inform the American people of our positions and our differences. So, I think that is a great idea. So, I’m in. If the other candidates are in, you count me in."

Now Clinton and O'Malley have both said they'll attend, but the Sanders campaign says it won't because of a threat by the DNC to bar candidates from future debates if they attend this one. 

Clinton suggests the DNC ought to "sanction" the debate, and then the threat goes away.

“I’m ready for the debate, and I hope Sen. Sanders will change his mind and join us,” she told Chris Matthews on Hardball today. “I think the DNC and the campaigns should be able to work this out.”

Watch Maddow explain the state of things on her show Tuesday:

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