by Stephen Bloshuk

via Wikipedia

On Saturday, November 14, Democratic presidential candidates Martin O’Malley, Bernie Sanders, and Hillary Rodham Clinton stood in front of the crowd in Des Moines, Iowa, and discussed their views on several controversial topics.

From the outset of the debate, it seemed that Clinton was being targeted by her fellow candidates for several reasons; a great deal of time was devoted to Clinton’s treatment of the Middle East during her tenure as Secretary of State (January 21,2009–February 1, 2013.) A major focal point was the Obama administration did not fully prioritize the targeting of terrorist organizations in that area during this four-year period.

Clinton, when asked about the nation’s response to ISIS, gave the impression that America was taking on the most responsibility in the lofty task of destroying the threat of ISIS once and for all.

O’Malley who spoke directly after, said that he “…respectfully disagreed with Secretary Clinton…It cannot solely be America’s fight. America is best when we work in collaboration with our allies.”

Clinton also came under fire for her “flip-flopping” views on gun control, as well as her closeness to Wall Street (which could be the cause of her reluctance to stand up to corporate interests.)

Sanders, when asked about his views on Wall Street taxation, said that he “…does think that there must be a tax on Wall Street speculation. It’s time to bail out the middle class, and to help our kids to be able to go to college tuition-free.”

Despite the other candidates’ attempts to destroy the positive elements of her political character, Clinton performed excellently during the debate- a post-debate interview of American Democrats and Independents showed that Clinton had been victorious.

Clinton has won more than just this debate, however- she also holds her position as the leading Democratic candidate in the popular vote. According to recent polls made by the American press (including CBS News and Fox News), Clinton holds 54.5 percent of the popular vote. This is a wide margin over Sanders, who holds 33.5 percent, and O’Malley, who holds a scant 2.8 percent.

Clinton’s ability to stand firm, which she showed at every turn of the debate, was a clear-cut cause of her victory this past weekend. Clinton, through her ability to stand up to criticism, shows that she is well-equipped to make the types of changes that many Americans want. If this pattern continues, it will undoubtedly help Clinton to continue excelling as the race for the presidency goes on.