The Democratic presidential primary debate in Concord, New Hampshire, is taking place after a week of speculation over the fate of Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) and his running mate, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.
The New Hampshire debate, which is being hosted by CNN, is a critical one for Sanders, whose popularity is at its highest level in the state since he announced his candidacy in late February.
It will also serve as a preview of the remaining contests in the Democratic primary, including the New Hampshire primary on March 1.
The first-time Democratic presidential candidate and his supporters say they will not bow to pressure from establishment Democratic leaders and seek to make a spectacle of themselves by playing the victim.
Instead, they have been planning to stage a spontaneous sit-in to protest the state’s closed primary system, the idea that the party should have more participation in the nominating process.
The idea is that, if the Sanders campaign can hold off Clinton, she could have the momentum and power necessary to get more delegates.
The Sanders campaign has faced a barrage of criticism from Clinton and other Democratic officials, who have suggested that his campaign is not credible.
Sanders has made the idea of a spontaneous rally to protest what he called an unfair and unfair system a central part of his campaign.
He has said that he is prepared to fight for the nomination if he has to, and he says that he has a path to victory in New York, Colorado and beyond.
Clinton has been in New England since early February to try to boost support among young people and Sanders supporters.
But as the state becomes more competitive, the Clinton campaign is ramping up its efforts in New Jersey, which holds its primary on February 8.
In New Hampshire last week, she said that Sanders should drop out of the race.
The debate will be held on the grounds of the Statehouse, located on the north side of the city, which has a large number of students, teachers and other workers from the manufacturing industry.
It has long been a major stop for Sanders.
On Feb. 6, Sanders hosted a rally for supporters in the town of Manchester and in nearby Concord.
He then went to a rally in Concord and another in Manchester a day later.
In the last few days, he has taken to the stage at more than 20 rallies in New Bedford and Portsmouth, as well as at least three in New Haven.
The debates will be moderated by CNN’s Dana Bash, a former Obama adviser and the anchor of CNN’s town hall series.
The first debate was hosted by Bash in December.
The second debate is being conducted by CNN Newsroom’s Dan Merica.