The Democratic Debate of 2015 airs tonight on CNN at 6:30 p.m. and just like the Republican Debate last month, the candidates will be lined up onstage to discuss the issues.  

But what's important this time around? What do you need to know about each candidate and what they stand for and-- honestly-- who's this Chafee dude?

Luckily, we've got the answers, and we're sharing the top 5 things you need to know before heading into the Democratic Debate.


  • Joe Raedle, Getty Images
    Joe Raedle, Getty Images

    The Podium Order Actually Matters

    If you think the candidates are just randomly set up onstage, think again.  Polls dating back to August 1 of this year determine where exactly each candidate is going to stand, and this year Hilary Clinton will be center stage.  Bernie Sanders will be directly to her right, and on his right will be Jim Webb.  To Clinton's left is Martin O'Malley, and Lincoln Chafee stands at Malley's left.

  • Win McNamee, Getty Images
    Win McNamee, Getty Images

    Who's the Haircut?

    Lincoln Chaffee is not just a dude with a bangin' middle part.  He's also a former Republican and mayor of his Rhode Island town.  Chaffee considers himself an 'environmental champion', believes in a woman's right to her own body, is strongly against the Iraq war, and isn't expected to go terribly far in this race.

  • Leigh Vogel, Getty Images
    Leigh Vogel, Getty Images

    Biden is Kind of Acting Like Batman

    Much like the caped crusader, Biden seems to be creating an aura of mystery that's either going to be like adding fuel to an already fiery pre-campaign publicity stunt or it'll turn out to be an anticlimactic dead end.  Some are expecting Biden to show at the debate tonight, and if the vice president does appear, there will be an empty podium set up just for him.

  • Mark Wilson, Getty Images
    Mark Wilson, Getty Images

    Sassy Sanders Doesn't Want the Drama

    Bernie Sanders has said that he's not too keen on starting petty fights during the debate and rather wants to focus on the issues.  In an interview for NBC, Sanders said, "I happen to respect and like Hillary Clinton, so I don’t get into personal attacks.  But are there differences of opinion that should be discussed? Of course, there are. That’s what that election is about."

  • Isaac Brekken, Getty Images
    Isaac Brekken, Getty Images

    Trump Won't Be There, and He Seems Disappointed

    Trump is like that guy at the party that you're desperately hoping you won't run into, but at the same time there's always something entertaining going on around him, whether he holds the record for best score in beer pong or his toupee keeps flying off while he dances.  Jokes aside, Trump will not be present at the Democratic debate tonight, which seems obvious, and yet some are worried that the debate won't pull in the ratings numbers they want.  Actually, that person is just Trump.  He notes that several individuals, including someone at CNN, told him personally that the debate will die without him.  Maybe you can sneak in the back, Trumpy?

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