On Wednesday, President Donald Trump said that the first presidential debate date to be moved up because it’s scheduled to be held only 35 days before the election, yet early voting in some states means many voters will cast their ballots before witnessing the President facing Joe Biden face-to-face.
“The one problem I have, the debate’s very late,” Trump told Fox & Freinds. “It’s at the end of September and a lot of ballots will already be cast by that time.”
President Trump wants earlier debate and more debates
“Why are they putting the first debate so late?” the President asked. “The first debate should be before the first – at least before the first ballots go out. And they have it a month later, almost a month later.”
“It’s ridiculous,” Trump added.
In Michigan, a key swing state, residents can submit ballots 45 days before the election. Virginians can vote in-person at their local registrar’s office during the same time period, and early voting begins in the swing state of Minnesota, on Sept. 18.
Trump also said there needs to be more debates.
“I wouldn’t mind more,” Trump said. “What’s more important to me is the first debate be moved up so that when people are putting in their first ballot they’re gonna know.”
Trump Campaign formally asks Debate Commission to schedule one the first week in September so voters in 16 states with early voting can benefit. Current schedule has the first of 3 debates on Sept 29th. Letter to the Commission calls current schedule "an outdated dinosaur."
— Mark Knoller (@markknoller) August 5, 2020
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Prominent Democrats want Biden to skip the debates
Some high profile Democrats including Bill Clinton’s former press secretary, Joe Lockhart, have said Biden should no-show the debates.
“Whatever you do, don’t debate Trump,” Lockhart wrote in a recent CNN op-ed.
“Trump has made more than 20,000 misleading or false statements according to the Washington Post,” Lockhart wrote. “It’s a fool’s errand to enter the ring with someone who can’t follow the rules or the truth.”
“Biden will undoubtedly take heat from Republicans and the media for skipping the debates,” Lockhart advised “But it’s worth the risk as trying to debate someone incapable of telling the truth is an impossible contest to win.”
New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman said in July that Biden should only debate the President if Trump releases his tax returns and agrees to real-time fact-checking during the debates.
Trump campaign is requesting a fourth debate — or rearranging the schedule to have the first debate in early September, before early voting.
They also list potential moderators (moderators are selected not by campaigns but by the nonpartisan Commission on Presidential Debates) pic.twitter.com/0NqDs5Phpv
— Matt Viser (@mviser) August 5, 2020
Jill Biden says her husband will debate
Jill Biden told Fox News on Tuesday that her husband will debate.
Host Dana Perino asked Mrs. Biden in an interview, “Wondering if you can settle this for us: will the former vice president debate President Trump this fall?”
“Oh yes, he will. I think they’ve already — I think there’s three debates they’ve decided on,” Jill Biden said.
“So, yes. He will be there,” she insisted.
— TIGER energy (@POPspinealign) August 5, 2020
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