- Trump has announced that he will use that time to engage in an event with his followers, which he deems as something more useful.
- The Commission explained its decision was to “protect the health and safety of all those involved.”
- Biden, on his part, has maintained that he would avail himself for the debate, albeit without an opponent.
US President Donald Trump announced on Thursday that he considers it a “waste of time” to engage in a virtual debate with his rival for the US presidency, former Vice President Joe Biden. Therefore, Trump announced he won’t participate in what would have been the second debate between the two fierce contenders, initially scheduled for October 15.
Following his rejection of the debate, Trump has announced that he will use that time to engage in an event with his followers, which he deems as something more useful.
By rejecting the virtual debate, Trump has defied the Commission on Presidential Debates, which is the body that has decided that the second debate be virtual.
Not only does Trump believe that such a debate is not up to him, but Trump went further, and sees foul play. In his opinion, what the Commission is trying to do is “protect” the Democratic candidate, Biden.
“I’m not going to waste my time on a virtual debate. That’s not what debating is all about,” Trump said in a morning phone interview with the Fox Business Network. “You sit behind a computer and do a debate – it’s ridiculous, and then they cut you off whenever they want.”
The Commission explained its decision was to “protect the health and safety of all those involved,” in a country badly hit by the COVID-19 pandemic. The new coronavirus has left more than 210,000 dead. Both candidates also have a high-risk age, Trump 74 years old, and Biden 77 years old.
In the interview with FBN, Trump assured viewers that he is in perfect health and even ready to resume his rallies. “I don’t think I am contagious at all,” the President insisted. “I’m back because I’m a perfect physical specimen,” Trump concluded.
The campaign of the Democratic former Vice President had already been concerned about the safety (in health terms) of the debate because it would take place less than two weeks after Trump tested positive for coronavirus and was admitted to the Walter Reed Military Hospital.
The debate was to be a town hall format. It is a stage to engage the general public’s questions, albeit virtually.
Biden, on his part, has maintained that he would avail himself for the debate, albeit without an opponent, and that he will dedicate himself to answering the questions that are asked.
US Presidential Debates in Perspective
Frank Fahrenkopf, the co-founder of the Debate Commission and representative of the Republican Party on that committee, interviewed by NBC News, endeavored to put the whole issue into perspective. He explained that it is not a mandatory requirement that a candidate must participate in a presidential debate.
Fahrenkopf cites President Jimmy Carter and his refusal to be part of what would have been a first debate forum in the 1980 elections if they included independent candidate John Anderson.
For now, everything indicates that Trump will once again make history for his extravagances, and will volatilize everything written so far about presidential debates.