Tulsi Gabbard’s sister accuses MSNBC of favoring Elizabeth Warren during debate

However, the candidates' speaking time ended up being a lot more even than she suggested.

Democratic presidential candidate Rep. Tulsi Gabbard, D-Hawaii, answers a question during a Democratic primary debate hosted by NBC News at the Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Art, Wednesday, June 26, 2019, in Miami. (AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee)
Rep. Tulsi Gabbard answers a question during a Democratic primary debate Wednesday hosted by NBC News in Miami. –Wilfredo Lee / AP

The nine people on stage with Sen. Elizabeth Warren during the first Democratic presidential primary debate mostly deferred from taking on the Massachusetts senator Wednesday night (despite being given several early chances by moderators).

One person who was unafraid to namecheck Warren: Rep. Tulsi Gabbard’s sister.

While the Hawaii congresswoman was on stage, her younger sister, Vrindavan, sent a tweet from Gabbard’s campaign account accusing MSNBC, one of the debate’s hosts, of supposedly favoring Warren through roughly the first 40 minutes of the two-hour event.

“It’s clear who MSNBC wants to be president: Elizabeth Warren,” the tweet said. “They’re giving her more time than all the other candidates combined. They aren’t giving any time to Tulsi at all.”


That didn’t exactly turn out to be the case.

Though Warren — who had the highest polling average of the 10 candidates on stage Wednesday — did receive several of the early questions, she ultimately spoke for 9.3 minutes during the debate — the third most behind New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker and former Texas congressman Beto O’Rourke, who spoke for 10.9 and 10.3 minutes, respectively.

Gabbard spoke for a total of 6.6 minutes, which was the seventh most out of the 10 candidates.

She did, however, get one notable highlight during the second half of the debate: a contentious clash with Ohio Rep. Tim Ryan over foreign military intervention.

Gabbard, a critic and veteran of the Iraq War, said Ryan’s calls for the United States to remain “engaged” in the Middle East was “unacceptable.”

“We are no better off in Afghanistan today than we were when this war began,” she said. “This is why it’s so important to have a president and commander-in-chief who knows the cost of war.”


Get the latest breaking news sent directly to your phone. Download our free app.