Jorge Ramos on Dropping Out of Debate Over Coronavirus Fear: "Too Much Is at Stake"

Jorge Ramos-Getty-H 2019
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The Univision anchor, who was scheduled to co-moderate Sunday's Democratic primary debate, "was in proximity with someone who was in direct contact with a person that tested positive for coronavirus."

Univision anchor Jorge Ramos is confident that he made the right decision in choosing to withdraw from Sunday's Democratic primary debate, which he was scheduled to co-moderate with CNN's Jake Tapper and Dana Bash.

On Thursday afternoon, the Democratic National Committee announced that Ramos will be replaced by his Univision colleague, Ilia Calderón, at the debate, which has been moved from Arizona to Washington, D.C., and will not have a studio audience.

"The DNC, CNN and Univision recently learned that Univision anchor and moderator Jorge Ramos was in proximity with someone who was in direct contact with a person that tested positive for coronavirus," a DNC spokesperson said. "Both Mr. Ramos and the person he was in contact with are in good health and symptom free. Despite being cleared by medical professionals and out of an abundance of caution, Jorge has decided to step aside from participating in the upcoming March 15 democratic debate."

Ramos discussed his decision to step aside in an email to The Hollywood Reporter.

"It was a very difficult decision but it was the right one," he said. "Especially in times like these. Too much is at stake."

Ramos confirmed that he's asymptomatic. "I am feeling perfectly fine and the doctors are confident I will be OK," he said.

Sunday's debate will be a two-person showdown between presumptive Democratic frontrunner Joe Biden and Sen. Bernie Sanders. The coronavirus outbreak, and the government's response to it, is set to be a major topic of discussion.

The debate, which was scheduled to be held at the Arizona Federal Theatre in Phoenix, will now take place at CNN's studio in Washington, D.C.