The Democratic debate scheduled for Sunday will be moved from Arizona to Washington, DC, the Democratic National Committee announced Thursday.
“Out of an abundance of caution and in order to reduce cross-country travel, all parties have decided that the best path forward is to hold Sunday’s debate at CNN’s studio in Washington, D.C., with no live audience,” DNC communications director Xochitl Hinojosa said in a statement.
Additionally, Univision’s Jorge Ramos was possibly exposed to coronavirus. While he is not exhibiting any symptoms, he has has stepped down from his role as one of the moderators for the debate, the DNC said. The network’s Ilia Calderón will take his place, alongside CNN’s Dana Bash and Jake Tapper. The debate is still set to take place 8 to 10 p.m. ET Sunday.
“Both Mr. Ramos and the person he was in contact with are in good health and symptom free,” Hinojosa said. “Despite being cleared by medical professionals and out of an abundance of caution, Jorge has decided to step aside from participating in the upcoming March 15 Democratic debate.”
“Our number one priority has and will continue to be the safety of our staff, campaigns, and all those involved in the debate.”
The news comes as the coronavirus pandemic grows and disrupts major events across the US.
The debate partners had previously announced that there would be no live audience, press filing center or spin room at the event.
The debate will air exclusively live on CNN, CNN en Español, CNN International, and Univision at 8 p.m. ET. The debate will stream live in its entirety, without requiring log-in to a cable provider, on CNN.com’s homepage, across mobile devices via CNN’s apps for iOS and Android, and via CNNgo apps for Apple TV, Roku, Amazon Fire, Chromecast and Android TV, as well as Univision’s digital properties. The full debate will be available exclusively the day following the airing on demand via cable/satellite systems, on CNNgo (at CNN.com/go on your desktop, smartphone, and tablets, and via CNNgo OTT apps), and CNN mobile apps on iOS and Android.