Everything You Need to Know for the Democratic Presidential Debate

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Presidential candidates Bernie Sanders, Hillary Clinton and Martin O'Malley participate in the second official 2016 Democratic debate, in Des Moines, Iowa, on November 14. Jim Young/Reuters

The three Democratic presidential candidates will face off Saturday night in their third debate of the 2016 election cycle, this time in the early primary state of New Hampshire.

The Democratic front-runner, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders and former Maryland Governor Martin O'Malley will take their places onstage during the prime-time debate, which is being held at Saint Anselm College in Manchester.

The Granite State is significant because it holds the first primary of the presidential election, set to take place on February 9. That will happen eight days after the Iowa caucuses, the first major electoral event of the presidential nominating process. The results of both typically indicate how voters are feeling overall about each candidate.

On the eve of the debate, Sanders's campaign came under fire with the Democratic National Committee (DNC). A software flaw in a DNC database allowed the senator's data director to read confidential material from Clinton's campaign. The DNC temporarily has blocked Sanders's campaign from using the party's voter files. The staffer was fired on Friday morning.

The action could affect Sanders's campaign efforts. The DNC maintains statistics gathered by campaigns, including information on voter registration, previous turnout and demographics. The details are then made accessible to local, state and national Democratic campaigns to give party members a strategic advantage to predict voter behavior.

Recent polling in New Hampshire indicates that favorability for Clinton has fallen behind that of Sanders, her closest competitor. But in the national polls, she has a more than 30-point lead over him. She generally has been the party's front-runner since her April announcement that she was seeking the presidency.

ABC News and the Union Leader will co-host the debate. The DNC last week cut WMUR, a popular local TV station, from the sponsor list after a labor dispute erupted between the company's owners and its employees.

Much of the conversation surrounding the election season has been focused on Republican front-runner Donald Trump and his controversial remarks. Most recently, he proposed the idea of temporarily banning all Muslims from entering the U.S., following the December 2 massacre in San Bernardino, California, that left 14 people dead.

ABC's David Muir and Martha Raddatz will moderate on Saturday. The debate will air on ABC and stream for free on the network's website.

Saturday marks the last debate of the year. The Democratic candidates won't see one another onstage again until January 17 in Charleston, South Carolina. After Saturday's event, there will be three remaining debates for the Democrats for this election cycle.

Their last debate was held in Des Moines, Iowa, less than 24 hours after a coordinated series of attacks in Paris on November 13. The candidates during the debate were asked about their views of the Islamic State militant group, better known as ISIS, which French President François Hollande said was responsible for the attack. Meanwhile, this weekend's debate is the first time the three Democrats will meet in the wake of the fatal shooting in San Bernardino. Earlier this week, much of the conversation during the fifth and final 2015 Republican debate was focused on national security and terrorism.

Everything You Need to Know for the Democratic Presidential Debate | U.S.