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Confusion, Criticism at Presidential Campaign Events


Dr. Ben Carson as he was being introduced at the Republican candidate debate on February 6, 2016.

Dr. Ben Carson as he was being introduced at the Republican candidate debate on February 6, 2016.

This is What’s Trending Today.

The Republican debate Saturday night in New Hampshire was one last chance for presidential candidates to appeal to voters ahead of the state’s primary vote on February 9.

But before the debate even began, something funny happened. And people are still talking about it today.​

ABC News showed the debate live on television. At the beginning of the broadcast, the debate announcers called each candidate's name. The candidates were to walk out on stage one-by-one.

First they announced New Jersey Governor Chris Christie. He walked out onto the debate stage.

Next, they announced Ben Carson. Dr. Carson took a few steps, and then he stopped. He did not come out on stage when his name was called.

A worker for ABC News backstage told Carson “go, go, go.” But Carson continued to wait in the hallway that led to the stage.

Next, the announcers introduced Texas Senator Ted Cruz. Cruz had a funny look on his face, and walked right past Dr. Carson onto the stage.

Then they introduced businessman Donald Trump. But, he did not come out onto the stage, either. So for a few minutes, the camera showed Carson and Trump standing together in the hallway. The rest of the candidates looked confused as they walked past them onto the stage.

The announcers did not know what to do either.

The TV comedy show Saturday Night Live made a joke about the incident just a few hours later. One of the show's comedian joked: “Here is actual footage of Ben Carson’s entrance, where the one thing he forgot to do was enter.”

On social media, people posted about the debate's confusing beginning. Many people wondered what happened.

One Twitter user posted: “I never thought watching 7 people walk onto a stage would be so funny..."

Another trending campaign incident this weekend happened during Hillary Clinton’s rally in New Hampshire. Clinton is in a close race with Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders for the Democratic nomination.

At the rally on Saturday, former Secretary of State Madeline Albright introduced Hillary Clinton to the crowd. Albright was the first woman to serve as Secretary of State, a position Hillary Clinton also held.

Clinton would be America’s first woman president if she is elected in November.

During the introduction, Madeleine Albright asked women to be more supportive of Clinton. Albright said that while Bernie Sanders talks about a political “revolution,” a true revolution for America would be electing a woman president.

She also said, “There is a special place in hell for women who don’t help each other.” Albright has said that line before at events in the past.

On social media, people reacted to Albright’s words. Some felt the statement was offensive.

Also this weekend, women's rights advocate Gloria Steinem also spoke about the importance of women supporting Clinton.

On a television show Friday night, Steinem suggested that young women support Bernie Sanders because he has a lot of young men working on his campaign. Young women, she said, are working to elect Sanders because they have a better chance of finding romance along the way.

The comments made some people angry. And they voiced their concern on social media.

And that’s What’s Trending Today.

I’m Ashley Thompson.

Dan Friedell wrote this story for Learning English. Ashley Thompson was the editor.

Who do you think will become the Republican and Democratic presidential nominees? We want to hear from you. Write to us in the Comments Section or on our Facebook page.

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Words in This Story

impress – v. to cause (someone) to feel admiration or interest

romance – n. an exciting and usually short relationship between lovers

stage manager – n. a person who is in charge of the stage, scenery, lighting, etc., for a performance in a theater

confuse – adj. unable to understand or think clearly

rally – n. a public meeting to support or oppose someone or something

primary – n. an election in which members of the same political party run against each other for the chance to be in a larger and more important election

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