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Opinion Trump-Biden debate: a crash you won't be able to look away from

16:30  29 september  2020
16:30  29 september  2020 Source:   usatoday.com

Interruptions and Insults: All About the Very Uncivil Tone of the First Presidential Debate

  Interruptions and Insults: All About the Very Uncivil Tone of the First Presidential Debate Trump repeatedly interrupted and heckled Biden, who responded by calling the President a "clown" and telling him to "shut up"The candidates regularly attacked each other’s character, as Trump repeatedly interrupted and heckled Biden, who responded by calling the President a “clown” and telling him to “shut up.” Moderator Chris Wallace often failed to get the discussion back on track.

"Joe Biden is a master debater who knows what he's doing," Trump campaign spokesman Tim Murtaugh told CNBC in a statement last week. While the Trump campaign may not be able to reverse its monthslong effort to undermine Biden , the Democrat's campaign is not without its

I worry about Joe Biden debating Donald Trump . He should do it only under two conditions. Otherwise, he’s giving Trump unfair advantages. And with the coronavirus now spreading further, and Biden being a responsible individual and role model, it’s likely that he won ’ t be able to engage

When Chris Wallace moderated the final presidential debate in 2016, the state of the nation and its politics could not have been more different than today. Yet, when Donald Trump faces Joe Biden on Tuesday night, Wallace is likely to begin almost exactly as he did four years ago: “The first topic is the Supreme Court. … I want to drill down on this because … you will in effect determine the balance of the court for what could be the next quarter century.”

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Donald Trump has long called Joe Biden "sleepy," but in recent months he's gone further, accusing the "Vice-President Biden intends to deliver his debate answers in words. "It's an uncomfortable conversation to have, but voters deserve to be able to assess Joe Biden 's capabilities by seeing him

a man wearing a suit and tie smiling at the camera: Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden and President Donald Trump. © AFP via Getty Images Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden and President Donald Trump.

Were it not for the death of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, what might have been a debate filled with predictable lines we’ve heard before will now start with fireworks. Trump will insist it’s his fiduciary responsibility to fill Ginsburg’s seat immediately. Biden will blast back at the hypocrisy of GOP leaders, who refused to even consider President Barack Obama’s nominee, Judge Merrick Garland, for eight months before the 2016 presidential election.

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Media captionHow will Trump or Biden win the debate ? Two pugilists with a combined age of 151, lacing up their gloves, each looking for a knockout blow - though probably neither quite able to float TV debates rarely change the course of a US election - more often they act as a catalyst for trends

Biden has officially committed to participating in the three scheduled presidential debates -- and Biden himself has said in multiple appearances and interviews that he is eager to debate Trump Biden said at an April fundraiser, according to a pool report. He added, " Look , I'm ready to debate him.

A crash you can't look away from

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I expect the 90-minute prime-time event to draw one of the largest audiences in the 60-year history of televised presidential debates (2016’s first debate had 84 million viewers). But even with the Supreme Court drama — and the bombshell revelation about Trump’s taxes — the focus will be form, not substance. The main attraction this time will not be policies and promises. As with auto races, many onlookers will be hoping to witness a crash.

Biden’s supporters want to see Trump cross the line with outrageous attacks. They’ll be waiting for Trump’s exaggerations and outright lies — and hoping that Wallace interrupts to call out the president.

Trump’s fans have a different focus. They don’t really care what Biden says; they just hope he fumbles and gaffes his way through it. They’ll drink a shot whenever the former vice president loses his place.

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Joe Biden is now the presumptive Democratic nominee in an election that will be complicated by the The debates may look very different from the norm. The final Democratic primary debate , which This content is imported from Twitter. You may be able to find the same content in another format, or you

Trump ‘pissed away the chance to protect the lives of 200,000 Americans when he didn’ t make a But the Biden campaign unloaded on Trump , saying the president apparently believed the best “Vice-President Biden intends to deliver his debate answers in words,” a Biden spokesperson told Politico .

My own scorecard will track a subtle Wallace “tell.” Whenever the veteran Fox News host senses an opening to challenge a male speaker, he invokes the word “sir.” In a one-on-one with Trump this past July, Wallace said “sir” 14 times.

For example, when Trump patted himself on the back for curbing coronavirus deaths, Wallace interrupted with: “But, sir, we have the seventh highest mortality rate in the world.”

Later Trump said, “Biden wants to defund the police.” Wallace shot back: “No he, sir, he does not.”

Trump and the election: Ignore the strongman fantasies. If Trump loses the election, he'll lose his job. Period.

At another tense moment, Wallace said, “But I've got to tell you, if I may, sir, respectfully, in the Fox poll, they asked people, who is more competent? Who's got — whose mind is sounder? Biden beats you in that.”

In the last 2016 presidential debate, Wallace challenged Trump with “sir” eight times.

Responsibility of moderator

Selecting a moderator has become as contentious as everything else in modern politics. Trump’s campaign suggested 24 journalists — all of whom were rejected by the nonpartisan Commission on Presidential Debates.

The moderator is solely responsible for determining the questions, placing an enormous burden on Wallace and moderators in future rounds — Steve Scully of C-SPAN, Oct. 15; Kristen Welker of NBC News, Oct. 22. USA TODAY’s Susan Page will moderate the vice presidential debate Oct. 7.

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The first Trump - Biden debate is likely to attract a great deal of attention, given a rumour that the Democratic presidential nominee may not show, suggest US political observers giving prognoses on what offensive and defensive strategies the contenders are likely to choose and how the debates will

President Donald Trump and Democrat Joe Biden square off for 90 minutes in their first debate Tuesday and political pros on both sides are fretting the President George H.W. Bush looked at his watch during a debate with Bill Clinton and independent Ross Perot in 1992, which made him look

Tuesday night’s debate will continue to use a structure established in 2012, with six segments lasting roughly 15 minutes each. The objective is to provide greater depth on the most critical subjects.

Wallace announced the topics but has not indicated their order: Trump and Biden records; Supreme Court; COVID-19; economy, race and violence in our cities; the integrity of the election.

With Sunday night's revelation by The New York Times that Trump paid virtually no federal income tax in in 10 of the past 15 years, Wallace will have to retool his topics to fit that in.

If he doesn’t, Biden is sure to bring it up, just as Hillary Clinton did in 2016: "He's the first candidate ever to run for president in the last 40-plus years who has not released his tax returns. … What is really troubling is that we learned in the last debate he has not paid a penny in federal income tax.”

Trump responded by claiming he was “entitled” to massive deductions, adding, "I know (Warren) Buffett took hundreds of millions of dollars. Soros, George Soros took hundreds of millions of dollars.”

Trump, who prides himself on being able to ad-lib on live TV, hasn’t been on a debate stage in four years. He could be rusty and is likely to fall back on the pat (often false) assertions he delivers regularly at campaign rallies. It will be up to Biden and Wallace to politely, but pointedly, issue corrections.

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Biden participated in all 11 Democratic primary debates between June 2019 and March of this year. He didn’t commit any significant gaffes, but he didn’t dominate either. When he goes one-on-one with Trump, he’ll have to resist being arrogant, particularly in the face of nasty attacks. But he’ll need to be forceful. He can’t use his favorite rhetorical crutch when stuck: I apologize, I’ve spoken too long, etc.

'We continue to pray': Joe Biden offers thoughts, prayers to President Trump for speedy recovery after coronavirus test

  'We continue to pray': Joe Biden offers thoughts, prayers to President Trump for speedy recovery after coronavirus test Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden offered his thoughts and prayers Friday after President Donald Trump tested positive for the coronavirus. Your browser does not support this video "Jill and I send our thoughts to President Trump and First Lady Melania Trump for a swift recovery," Biden, a former vice president, said in a tweet. "We will continue to pray for the health and safety of the president and his family." © Andrew Harnik, AP Democratic presidential candidate former Vice President Joe Biden stops to speak to members of the media as he walks out of the Queen Theater in Wilmington, Del.

When it’s over, each side will claim victory. Unless there’s an epic failure by one nominee, cable pundits will undoubtedly declare: “It played well for each man’s base, but it didn’t move the needle for undecided voters.”

And who will Chris Wallace conclude is the winner? He’ll never tell. But count up the number of times “sir” is said to each candidate. The man with the fewest wins.

Peter Funt is a writer and host of "Candid Camera."

You can read diverse opinions from our Board of Contributors and other writers on the Opinion front page, on Twitter @usatodayopinion and in our daily Opinion newsletter. To respond to a column, submit a comment to letters@usatoday.com.

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Trump-Biden debate: a crash you won't be able to look away from

'Will you shut up, man?': Testy exchanges on health care, Supreme Court among debate top moments .
They bickered on who should appoint the next Supreme Court justice, their stances on health care and even brought each other’s families into the fray. Moderator Chris Wallace of Fox News struggled to rein in the candidates and at times admonished Trump as interrupting more frequently than Biden. © Mario Tama, Getty Images A server wears a face shield and face-covering as people sit to watch a broadcast of the first debate between President Donald Trump and Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden. Start the day smarter. Get all the news you need in your inbox each morning.

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