Visualizing the Democratic Debate, September 12, 2019

Nick Beauchamp

Plotmap of the overall trajectory of the debate

Visualization from These are the top 15 words not including candidate names or boring words.

The plotmap shows the overall trajectory of the debate, starting with the first quarter (the circle with a 1 in it, slightly obscured) and ending with the fourth (circle with a 4 in it), where the words closest to each segment are the terms most prevalent at that stage of the debate. Note how the debate begins in healthcare, moves into segments on trade, immigration and guns (which also involve more references to Trump, and also Obama), then onto foreign policy and war, and finishes with education. Note also that "pay," one of the few explicitly economic terms and a point of contention between the center and left, recurs in both the healthcare and education segments.

Dynamic visualization of the four major candidates

The following visualization is entirely computer-generated, using similar methods to the Plotmap.