Commission On Presidential Debates Is ‘Considering Changes’ After Trump Debacle

Democratic presidential candidate and former Vice President Joe Biden and President Donald Trump speak during the first presidential debate at the Case Western Reserve University and Cleveland Clinic in Cleveland, Oh... Democratic presidential candidate and former Vice President Joe Biden and President Donald Trump speak during the first presidential debate at the Case Western Reserve University and Cleveland Clinic in Cleveland, Ohio on September 29, 2020. (JIM WATSON,SAUL LOEB/AFP via Getty Images) MORE LESS
Start your day with TPM.
Sign up for the Morning Memo newsletter

The Commission on Presidential Debates said on Wednesday that it’s considering changes to the structure of the remaining two presidential debates.

The commission’s announcement comes after President Trump went off the rails during the first debate Tuesday, constantly interrupting and interjecting while moderator Chris Wallace struggled to keep things on track.

The first debate “made clear that the additional structure should be added to the format of the remaining debates to ensure a more orderly discussion of the issues,” the commission said.

In a statement issued Wednesday, the CPD said it will be “carefully considering the changes that it will adopt and will announce those measures shortly.”

The CPD added that it’s “grateful” for Wallace’s “professionalism and skill” he brought to the debate and it “intends to ensure that additional tools to maintain order are in place for the remaining debates.”

Shortly after the CPD released its statement, Trump rehashed his ire toward Wallace and Biden in a tweet.

The Trump campaign also hit back at the CPD’s consideration of changes for upcoming debates in a statement issued by communications director Tim Murtaugh on Wednesday afternoon. Murtaugh accused the CPD’s discussion of instituting changes  to debates going forward “because their guy got pummeled last night.”

“President Trump was the dominant force and now Joe Biden is trying to work the refs,” Murtaugh wrote. “They shouldn’t be moving the goalposts and changing the rules in the middle of the game.”

Earlier Wednesday, Biden said that he hopes the CPD can “control the ability of us to answer the question without interruption” when asked whether any changes should be made to the format of upcoming debates against Trump.

“I’m not going to speculate on what happens in the second or third debate,” Biden said. “My hope is that they’re able to literally say: the question gets asked of trump. He has a microphone two minutes to answer the question, and no one else has a microphone, and then I don’t know what the actual rules are going to be, literally, but that’s what seems to me to make sense.”

Biden added that he’s “looking forward to it,” before being pressed on whether he has anything to say to persuadable voters who were turned off by politics after Tuesday night’s debate debacle.

The former VP replied that he can “understand” the sentiment and proceeded to jab Trump for being a “national embarrassment” in light of his chaotic debate performance.

“I kind of thought at one point — maybe I shouldn’t say this, but the President of the United States conducted himself the way he did — I think it was just a national embarrassment,” Biden said. “But, look, I just hope that the American people and those undecided voters try to determine what each of us has as an answer for their concerns and allows us to actually speak.”

Watch Biden’s remarks below:

Latest News

Notable Replies

  1. Thanks Donnie, you’re why we can’t have anything nice.

  2. And this will give Donnie the excuse he needs to pull out - “They are cheaters! They’re tipping the table because I Won so BIGLY!!”

  3. Just set up a partial mute button on their mics - and activate it for the first minute and 45 seconds of the 2 minute answer

  4. They pretty much have to do something. I’m very curious how they’re going to manage while trying to give the appearance of being neutral.

  5. How about a Zoom debate with 2 minutes or 5 minutes for answers, uninterrupted? The screen and audio would be suspended for the candidate not speaking.

    It is either that…or stop the debates. It was a shit show.

Continue the discussion at forums.talkingpointsmemo.com

294 more replies

Participants

Avatar for daled Avatar for trnc Avatar for teenlaqueefa Avatar for inversion Avatar for sniffit Avatar for yskov Avatar for danny Avatar for 26degreesrising Avatar for esva Avatar for careysub Avatar for thunderclapnewman Avatar for jonney_5 Avatar for dommyluc Avatar for castor_troy Avatar for katscherger Avatar for cub_calloway Avatar for bwillator Avatar for seamus42 Avatar for txlawyer Avatar for zenicetus Avatar for randome Avatar for Thane Avatar for LeeHarveyGriswold Avatar for JorgeP

Continue Discussion
Masthead Masthead
Founder & Editor-in-Chief:
Executive Editor:
Managing Editor:
Associate Editor:
Editor at Large:
General Counsel:
Publisher:
Head of Product:
Director of Technology:
Associate Publisher:
Front End Developer:
Senior Designer: