Trump wants no rule changes after chaotic first debate
WASHINGTON (AFP) – President Donald Trump said on Thursday (Oct 1) 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 organisers announced on 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.
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 organisations 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 Oct 15 in Miami and the third for Oct 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.
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