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President Donald Trump said Thursday he likes his debates with Joe Biden just the way they are and opposes potential changes to try and prevent repetition of the chaos that marred their first clash.
The US presidential debates organizers announced Wednesday that "additional structure" is needed "to ensure a more orderly discussion" -- a polite reference to the meltdown that occurred the previous day in Cleveland.
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Trump says not so fast.
"Why would I allow the Debate Commission to change the rules for the second and third Debates when I easily won last time?" he tweeted.
Trump has declared himself the winner several times, citing unidentified polls. Surveys conducted by US media organizations have suggested the opposite, giving Biden the upper hand.
Republicans, Democrats and even the night's moderator, Chris Wallace of Fox News, have been nearly unanimous in agreeing that the 90-minute encounter was an ugly and out-of-control occasion.
"I never dreamt that it would go off the tracks the way it did," Wallace told The New York Times.
The second presidential debate is scheduled for October 15 in Miami and the third for October 22 in Nashville.
Among possible changes being discussed to help the moderators is allowing them to turn off a candidate's microphone, in hopes of preventing interruptions and outbursts.
Cleveland's clash saw Trump and Biden repeatedly interrupting and insulting each other, with the president doing the most and certainly the loudest out-of-turn talking.
The Debates Still Matter .
In a fractured media environment, it’s rare when Americans of all persuasions are watching the same thing.During the debate, Donald Trump had relentlessly interrupted and talked over Joe Biden and the moderator, Chris Wallace. In media coverage, a consensus quickly formed. Yesterday’s episode of the podcast The Daily came with the warning “This episode contains strong language.” The host, Michael Barbaro, reported that his own mother—“not someone who curses in text messages”—had texted to say, “This is a shitshow.” A teaser for a BuzzFeed News story read, “DEBATE NIGHT: THE GREAT AMERICAN SHITSHOW.