CNN announces string of 2020 town halls

CNN on Tuesday announced a string of town halls in the coming weeks featuring five different Democrats running for president in 2020.

Sen. Kirsten GillibrandKirsten Elizabeth Gillibrand2020 Democrats mark 7th anniversary of DACA 2020 Democrats mark 7th anniversary of DACA Julián Castro defends going on Fox: I'm focused on 'the people out there watching' MORE (D-N.Y.) will appear in the first town hall, which will air on April 9 and be moderated by Erin Burnett. Gov. Jay InsleeJay Robert Inslee2020 Democrats mark 7th anniversary of DACA 2020 Democrats mark 7th anniversary of DACA Democratic presidential hopefuls react to debate placement MORE (D-Wash.) will join CNN for another town hall the next day that Wolf Blitzer will host. Former San Antonio Mayor and Housing and Urban Development Secretary Julian CastroJulian Castro2020 Democrats mark 7th anniversary of DACA Democratic presidential hopefuls react to debate placement The Hill's 12:30 Report — Presented by MAPRx — Biden, Sanders to share stage at first DNC debate MORE will appear at another town hall on April 11 and be interviewed by Don Lemon. 

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CNN will also host back-to-back town halls on April 14 with author Marianne WilliamsonMarianne WilliamsonFive takeaways from first Democratic debate lineup Five takeaways from first Democratic debate lineup Democratic presidential hopefuls react to debate placement MORE and businessman Andrew YangAndrew YangFive takeaways from first Democratic debate lineup Five takeaways from first Democratic debate lineup Democratic presidential hopefuls react to debate placement MORE to be moderated by Dana Bash and Ana Cabrera, respectively.

The network has already hosted several town halls with presidential contenders, giving candidates opportunities to get their names and platforms out to the public.

Sen. Kamala HarrisKamala Devi HarrisThe generational divide of Joe Biden and the Democratic Party 2020 Democrats mark 7th anniversary of DACA 2020 Democrats mark 7th anniversary of DACA MORE (D-Calif.) scored the highest-rated town hall for CNN this year in delivering nearly 1.9 million total viewers on Jan. 28. The event was moderated by "State of the Union" anchor Jake Tapper.

The most recent town hall on the network with Sen. Cory BookerCory Anthony BookerThe generational divide of Joe Biden and the Democratic Party Booker, O'Rourke, Buttigieg rally with striking McDonald's workers in South Carolina Booker, O'Rourke, Buttigieg rally with striking McDonald's workers in South Carolina MORE (D-NJ) last Wednesday delivered 929,000 total viewers. "CNN Tonight" anchor Don Lemon moderated that event. 

But perhaps the biggest beneficiary of CNN’s town hall format thus far is South Bend Mayor Pete ButtigiegPeter (Pete) Paul ButtigiegButtigieg on Biden's Iraq War vote: 'that vote was a mistake' Buttigieg on Biden's Iraq War vote: 'that vote was a mistake' Buttigieg on offers of foreign intel: 'Just call the FBI' MORE, whose presidential campaign is still technically in the exploratory phase. His appearance last month was swiftly followed by an avalanche of media attention and a surge in donations to his campaign, cementing his status as a serious contender after entering the race as a little-known Indiana mayor.

He announced the next day that his campaign received donations from more than 65,000 Americans, reaching the threshold to appear on the Democratic debate stage this summer. 

Other candidates to be featured in CNN town halls this year include Sen. Amy KlobucharAmy Jean KlobucharElection security bills face GOP buzzsaw Election security bills face GOP buzzsaw Julián Castro defends going on Fox: I'm focused on 'the people out there watching' MORE (D-Minn.) and Bernie SandersBernie SandersButtigieg on Biden's Iraq War vote: 'that vote was a mistake' Buttigieg on Biden's Iraq War vote: 'that vote was a mistake' The generational divide of Joe Biden and the Democratic Party MORE (I-Vt.), Rep. Tulsi GabbardTulsi GabbardOvernight Defense: Trump doubles down on claim Iran attacked tankers | Iran calls accusations 'alarming' | Top nuke official quietly left Pentagon | Pelosi vows Congress will block Saudi arms sale Overnight Defense: Trump doubles down on claim Iran attacked tankers | Iran calls accusations 'alarming' | Top nuke official quietly left Pentagon | Pelosi vows Congress will block Saudi arms sale Democratic presidential hopefuls react to debate placement MORE (D-Hawaii), Rep. John DelaneyJohn Kevin DelaneyFive takeaways from first Democratic debate lineup Five takeaways from first Democratic debate lineup Democratic presidential hopefuls react to debate placement MORE (Md.) and Buttigieg, as well as former Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz, who has not declared his candidacy.