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President Trump Says no to virtual debate

by The Oregon Herald Staff    Thursday October 8, 2020 - 5:14 AM
POLITICS
* Presidential Debates *
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President Trump Says no to virtual debate
WASHINGTON DC - The Commission on Presidential Debates announced that the second presidential debate will be held virtually.

However, after hearing this news, President Donald Trump just announced that a virtual debate is not acceptable. Trump said he will not attend. He is apparently not concerned about the potential of infecting others with covid-19.

'I'm not going to waste my time': Trump says he won't do virtual debate against Biden. "I'm not going to do a virtual debate," the president told Fox Business. "I'm not going to waste my time on a virtual debate. That's not what debating is all about."

Former Vice President Joe Biden said he would attend such a virtual debate.

The second presidential debate was to be held virtually, the Commission on Presidential Debates announced Thursday morning in the wake of President Donald Trump's positive test for coronavirus.

"The second presidential debate will take the form of a town meeting, in which the candidates would participate from separate remote locations," the commission said in a statement. "The town meeting participants and the moderator, Steve Scully, Senior Executive Producer & Political Editor, C-SPAN Networks, will be located at the Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts of Miami-Dade County in Miami, Florida. The White House Pool will provide coverage of the second presidential debate."

"No i'm not going to waste my time on a virtual debate," he said during an interview on the Fox Business channel.

The debate commission's decision came six days after Trump announced early last Friday that he and first lady Melania Trump had tested positive for coronavirus.

Since Trump's diagnosis, more than a dozen White House officials have tested positive for Covid-19.

"I don't think I'm contagious," Trump told host Maria Bartiromo on Thursday morning. Public health officials say that Covid-19 patients need to be isolated from others for at least 10 days after contracting the virus, and up to 20 days depending on the severity of the infection.

Citing a need to "protect the health and safety of all involved," the commission said in a statement, "The second presidential debate will take the form of a town meeting, in which the candidates would participate from separate remote locations."

The debate's location in Miami, Florida and the moderator, C-SPAN's Steve Scully will remain unchanged, they said.

The announcement came six days after Trump announced early last Friday that he and first lady Melania Trump had tested positive for coronavirus.

Since Trump's diagnosis, more than a dozen White House officials have tested positive for Covid-19.

The president was later transferred to Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, where he spent the next three days receiving an aggressive treatment of therapies under the care of a team of doctors.

Trump was discharged from the hospital Monday into the care of White House physicians who say he is steadily improving.

It is unclear exactly when Trump was first infected with the virus or when he last tested negative for it before his positive tests last Thursday. Both of these factors make it difficult to assess when the president will no longer be contagious to others.

A day after he left Walter Reed hospital, Trump tweeted on Tuesday that he was "looking forward to the debate," despite still being treated for Covid-19. Trump's campaign said the president wanted to participate in the debate "in person."

Earlier this week, Biden said if Trump remains infectious then the debate should be called off, but added that he would follow medical professionals' advice.

The first debate between the two candidates last Tuesday in Cleveland, Ohio quickly devolved into a fiasco after Trump refused to stop talking when his allotted time was finished, and continued to interrupt and insult Biden for the remainder of the debate.

Biden also grew frustrated during the 90 minute debate, at one point calling the president "a clown."

Following the disaster in Cleveland, the commission said it was exploring ways to give the debate moderators more ways to enforce the previously-agreed upon rules if and when candidates refused to obey them.