First Trump v. Biden debate takes place


Photos courtesy of Creative Commons.

Maddie Lawson, Staff Writer

As viewers across the country sat down in front of their televisions on Sep. 29, 2020 at 9 p.m., expectations for the first presidential debate between President Donald Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden were all across the board. While some undecided voters looked forward to an evening focused on each candidates’ perspectives on issues that matter right now, many other viewers tuned in just to watch chaos unfold on the debate stage in Cleveland, Ohio. 

If chaos was the expectation, the evening certainly did not disappoint. The debate, which was hosted by Fox News host Chris Wallace was just over an hour and a half in length. In this time they covered candidates’ views on the recent Supreme Court vacancy, the federal government response to the COVID-19 pandemic, racial justice, climate change, and concerns surrounding election integrity in the upcoming election. 

As each candidate shared their views on the topics however; they were both met by numerous interruptions from the other. At many points, they struggled to get complete sentences out without an interjection from their opponent. 

“He started off with three major interruptions long before I started doing it to him,” Trump claimed in a Fox News interview with Sean Hannity following the debate. Each candidate pushed responsibility for the derailment of the debate process onto the other.

“I think it was embarrassing to see the President hectoring like that,” Joe Biden said to NBC’s Lester Holt. 

Speaking out the morning after the debate in an interview with the New York Times, Wallace said he “never dreamt that it would go off the tracks the way it did.” 

Appearing frustrated with the performance, Wallace spent an unusual amount of time having to remind the candidates of the rules for the evening. 

The debate commission is considering changing the rules for the next debates to “ensure a more orderly discussion of the issues,” according to a statement the bipartisan group released.  Potential changes may include having the candidates’ microphones muted when it is outside of their allotted speaking time. 

The next presidential debate, originally scheduled for Oct. 15, has been cancelled following disputes over the format. The final debate is currently scheduled to be on Oct. 22 at 9 p.m..