Hillary Clinton emerged unscathed from the first Democratic debate of the 2016 campaign, cutting a calm and confident figure as she sparred with her rivals for the White House. The presidential frontrunner parried jabs by Vermont senator Bernie Sanders and three other party hopefuls, who challenged her on everything from political flip-flops to gun control and military intervention in the Middle East. An independent senator from Vermont who has drawn huge crowds on the campaign trail, Sanders also delivered a spirited performance as he appealed to the party's left-wing, urging action on climate change and attacking Wall Street.
The first Democratic debate of the 2016 US presidential campaign kicked off Tuesday with frontrunner Hillary Clinton trying to draw a line under scandals that have chipped away at her support. CNN moderator Anderson Cooper opened the debate with a tough question for Clinton about policy flip-flops and what she is willing to do to gain power, a topic that has dogged the former first lady, secretary of State and New York senator. "I have always fought for the same values and principles, but like most human beings, including those of us who run for office, I do absorb new information, I do look at what's happening in the world," Clinton shot back, with a steel that would be seen throughout the evening.