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Seven Minutes for Six Candidates
By Alexandra Conway, 10, Molly Wienberg, 11, and Ellie Bosies, 10
Scholastic Student Reporters


From left: Scholastic Student Reporters Alexandra Conway, Molly Wienberg, and Ellie Bosies at the debate in Nashua, New Hampshire.
(Photo: Suzanne Freeman)


Sunday, January 25—Six of the seven Democrats who want the chance to be President spoke to an audience in Nashua, New Hampshire, tonight.

"After we get done with this process, it's important for every one of us to work to beat Bush," said former Governor Howard Dean.

Dean and his fellow Democratic presidential candidates were given seven minutes each to tell the state Democratic Party why they would be the best choice for the presidential nomination.

"I can bring people in from across party lines," said Senator Joseph Lieberman. "Give me your confidence and I can give you the White House."

Congressman Dennis Kucinich focused on the war in Iraq—and his opposition to it.

"I'm the only one with a plan to bring our troops home," he said. "I'm the only one who insists on an immediate end to the occupation." Kucinich has laid out a 90-day plan for pulling American troops out of Iraq.

General Wesley Clark used his time to show how strongly he has embraced his new political party. Clark belonged to neither the Democratic nor the Republican parties while he was General in the U.S. Army.

"I am proud to be a Democrat because that's the party that best represents my values," he said.

All agreed that a change in government is needed.

"There are two Americas," said Senator John Edwards of North Carolina. "One America is for the poor, and one is for the rich. I'm going to change that with the help of New Hampshire."

Senator John Kerry of Massachusetts was the last to speak. The new front-runner in the race, Kerry summed it all up.

"It's time for us to get real," he said.

Voters in New Hampshire will go to the polls on Tuesday, January 27. From there they focus on winning primaries in South Carolina, Arizona, and other states with elections on February 2. The next big primary election days are Tuesday, March 2, and Tuesday, March 9. The Scholastic Kids Press Corps will be covering elections throughout the nomination process.