How to watch the Democratic debate free on CNN live without cable

The 2020 Democratic debate is back and bigger than ever. Still paying attention? Here’s how to stream it live.

How to watch the Democratic debate free on CNN live without cable
[Photo: Saul Loeb/AFP via Getty Images]

The latest Democratic debate of the 2020 primaries is taking place this evening, and this time it’s bigger than ever. No fewer than 12 presidential hopefuls will cram themselves onto the debate stage at Otterbein University in Westerville, Ohio, where they will face questions from Erin Burnett and Anderson Cooper of CNN and Marc Lacey of the New York Times.


Here’s the full lineup:

  • Joe Biden
  • Cory Booker
  • Pete Buttigieg
  • Julián Castro
  • Tulsi Gabbard
  • Kamala Harris
  • Amy Klobuchar
  • Beto O’Rourke
  • Bernie Sanders
  • Tom Steyer
  • Elizabeth Warren
  • Andrew Yang

The CNN/New York Times Democratic debate is set to begin tonight (Tuesday, October 15) at 8 p.m. ET. If you’re a cord cutter who wants to stream it live on your computer or mobile device, we have some good news: CNN, as it has in the past, will lift its pay-TV authentication for the event, meaning you can stream it for free without signing up for a streaming service or logging into any pesky cable providers.

A few other streaming services are also offering free access, so it’s easier than ever to watch the Democrats face off for their fourth debate of the election season. (Of course, if you’d rather tune out until they’ve narrowed the field, we wouldn’t blame you.) I’ve rounded up some viewing options below. Happy streaming!

  • CNN digital: The easiest way to stream it live is just to visit CNN’s website or mobile apps on iOS or Android. No login is required.
  • Facebook: Some of CNN’s Facebook pages, including the main page and CNN International, will also stream the debate.
  • Hulu: In partnership with CNN, Hulu says it will stream the debate free of charge for its SVOD subscribers. It will show up in the “Hulu Picks” section beginning at 7 p.m. ET.
  • Sling TV: Yes, even Sling wants in on the action. The service says it will stream the debate for free as part of its “free experience” program. More info on that here.
  • New York Times: The paper will stream the debate on its homepage at

About the author

Christopher Zara is a senior staff news editor for Fast Company and obsessed with media, technology, business, culture, and theater. Before coming to FastCo News, he was a deputy editor at International Business Times, a theater critic for Newsweek, and managing editor of Show Business magazine