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USA election 2020: Trump and Biden feud over debate topics

USA election 2020: Trump and Biden feud over debate topics”

No changes have been made to the debate rules, but media reports have indicated the commission has considered whether to cut off candidates' microphones if they break the rules.

The commission ended up canceling the debate that had been scheduled for October 15.

The US Commission on Presidential Debates announced Monday they will mute the microphones of President Donald Trump and his Democratic rival Joe Biden when they are not answering questions during their final showdown, to avoid the interruptions that disrupted their last debate.

The commission said it "had determined that it is appropriate to adopt measures meant to promote adherence to agreed upon rules and inappropriate to make changes to those rules". "Time taken up during any interruptions will be returned to the other candidate". "For the balance of each segment, which by design is meant to be dedicated to open discussion, both candidates' microphones will be open".

"We realize, after discussions with both campaigns, that neither campaign may be totally satisfied with the measures announced today", the commission said in a statement.

The commission noted that "one [campaign] may think they go too far, and one may think they do not go far enough", but that these actions provided the right balance in the interests of the public.

Trump backed out of a second scheduled debate set for last Thursday over a disagreement about the virtual format following his COVID-19 infection.

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The Commission on Presidential Debates, the sponsor of the televised debate in Nashville, said changes were necessary after the bad-tempered first debate.

The manager of the Trump campaign wrote to the CPD on Monday to object to the topics, which were chosen by Ms Welker, claiming that the selection failed to honour a "long-standing custom" of debating foreign policy.

But the Trump camp was holding firm against any changes being made to the rules.

In the last debate, in September, Trump interrupted Biden 71 times, compared to the former vice president's interrupting Trump 22 times, the news site Axios reported.

"The campaigns and the commission agreed months ago that the debate moderator would choose the topics", Biden campaign spokesman TJ Ducklo said in a statement. "The Trump campaign is lying about that now because Donald Trump is afraid to face more questions about his disastrous Covid response".

This story and its headline have been updated with the commission's change to the debate's rules and comments from the Trump and Biden campaigns.

"This was supposed to be the foreign policy debate, so the president still looks forward to forcing Biden to answer the number one relevant question of whether he's been compromised by the Communist Party of China", Mr. Stepien said.



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