Heckler-In-Chief: Trump Runs Amok As Biden Tries Direct Appeal To Voters

CLEVELAND, OHIO - SEPTEMBER 29: U.S. President Donald Trump and Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden participate in the first presidential debate at the Health Education Campus of Case Western Reserve Universit... CLEVELAND, OHIO - SEPTEMBER 29: U.S. President Donald Trump and Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden participate in the first presidential debate at the Health Education Campus of Case Western Reserve University on September 29, 2020 in Cleveland, Ohio. This is the first of three planned debates between the two candidates in the lead up to the election on November 3. (Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images) MORE LESS
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September 29, 2020 9:59 p.m.

In the first half hour of the first presidential debate of the 2020 general election, President Donald Trump hardly let former Vice President Joe Biden — or, even, moderator Chris Wallace — get a word in edgewise. 

Frustrated, Biden often simply spoke while facing the camera directly, rather than Trump or Wallace. 

“Do you believe for a moment what he’s telling you?” Biden said at one point, addressing the camera after Trump asserted that he’d spoken “to the scientists in charge, and they’ll have the [COVID-19 vaccine] very soon.” 

Trump’s strategy, as it often is during contentious interviews, appeared to be simply talking over any inconvenient questions or effective attacks. 

Most notably, when Wallace attempted to ask him about his attempt to eliminate Obamacare in federal court without a plan to replace it, Trump tried to smother the question entirely. 

Wallace at times got Trump to follow the debate’s rules and allow Biden time to answer. But Trump appeared frustrated at not being allowed to speak unfettered. 

“I guess I’m debating you, not him,” he said to Wallace, after the moderator managed to get his health care question in. 

Biden was more blunt. 

“Would you shut up, man?” he said at one point, before calling Trump “unpresidential.” 

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