Trump, Biden meet tonight in Cleveland for first debate
President Donald Trump and challenger, Democrat presidential nominee, Joe Biden, will face-off tonight in Cleveland for a highly-anticipated debate between two highly personal men with contrasting styles in a job interview for President of the United States.
“Trump had told advisers that he is preparing an all-out assault on Biden,” says the Associated Press, “claiming that the former senator’s 47 years in Washington have left him out of touch and that his family, namely his son Hunter, has benefited from corruption. The president on Monday also repeated his demand that Biden take some sort of drug test, asserting without evidence that the Democratic nominee was somehow using a performance enhancer.”
Biden, on the other hand, is anxious to cast off rumors that his age has caused his cognitive abilities to decline. Even allies in the press are concerned about a Biden campaign schedule that often ends before 10 a.m. ET and has further reinforced concerns about Biden’s ability to manage the presidency. The debate is, to some extent, the opportunity to put those fears amongst Democrats and undecided voters to rest.
“Since his Aug. 11 selection of California Sen. Kamala Harris as his running mate,” says the Washington Post, “Biden has had 22 days where he either didn’t make public appearances, held only virtual fundraisers or ventured from his Delaware home solely for church, according to an Associated Press analysis of his schedules.”
And Biden has never been a polished performer in debates, even when younger. He lacks the intensity that Trump brings to debating.
“Biden’s performances during the primary debates were uneven, and some Democrats have been nervous as to how he will fare in an unscripted setting. But his team views the night as a moment to illuminate Trump’s failings with the pandemic and economy, with the former vice president acting as a ‘fact checker on the floor’ while bracing himself for the onslaught that is coming,” says the Associated Press.
Local Fox News 8 in Cleveland says that the president has not formally prepared for the debate, while Biden has used stand-in “Bob Bauer, a senior Biden adviser and former White House general counsel, playing the role of Trump.”
“The debate format is six 15-minute segments on the following issues: Trump and Biden records, the Supreme Court, COVID-19, the economy, race and violence in our cities, and the integrity of the election. The list, which was released last week, is subject to change depending on news developments,” says the local Fox station.
The 90-minute debate is being hosted by Case Western University in Cleveland, starting at 9 p.m. ET and will feature moderator Chris Wallace and a small, mask-wearing, socially-distanced audience that likely will keep the audience cheering down to a minimum.
Neither Trump nor Biden will wear masks for the debate.
PHOTO: Win McNamee/Getty Images
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