President Trump and Democratic nominee Joe Biden kicked off their first fiery presidential debate Tuesday night, sparring over everything from the Supreme Court nomination, coronavirus, and Biden’s sons, with moderator Chris Wallace warning Trump several times for interrupting.
It became more of a barroom brawl, television shoutfest, and exhausting insult derby. The first three confrontations were turned into attack Hunter Biden, smarts, and schoolyard name-calling. As Trump went on offense, Biden tried to shut him down by calling the president a “clown” and a “liar.”
Wallace rebuked Trump severally for going against the debate rules by interrupting. “Gentlemen, I hate to raise my voice, but why shouldn’t I be different than the two of you?” Wallace said.
Trump came out blazing, but Biden managed to compose himself well and didn’t fall into previous debate pitfalls where he cut his time short or stumbled to get out responses. The two men often talked over each other in a brawl that got unwieldy at times.
The president touted his record in the White House on boosting the economy and how he handled the pandemic, proclaiming: “There has never been an administration or president who has done more than I’ve done in a period of three and a half years, and that’s despite the impeachment hoax.”
However, Biden said under Trump the country has become weaker, sicker, poorer and more violent. “You’re the worst president America has ever had,” Biden said at one point.
Biden went on to describe himself as a steady leader of the Democratic Party and distanced himself from Bernie Sanders’ health care plan and Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s Green New Deal. ”
You just lost the left,” Trump told Biden. Trump accused Biden of failing to admonish violent rioters and stand up for law enforcement in Democratic-led cities that have been unraveling with racial unrest.
“The people of this country want and demand law and order and you’re afraid to even say it,” Trump said.
The former vice president also declined to tell debate moderator Chris Wallace of Fox News whether he would support adding justices to the court if Trump’s conservative pick Amy Coney Barrett is confirmed to replace liberal icon Ruth Bader Ginsburg.
“Whatever position I take on that, that’ll become the issue. The issue is the American people should speak. You should go out and vote. You’re in voting, now vote and let your senators know how strongly you feel. But vote now,” Biden said.
Trump interjected: “Are you going to pack the court? Are you going to pack the court? He doesn’t want to answer.”
“I’m not going to answer the question, because the question is, the question is, the question is —” Biden said, as Trump continued to press him to answer.
“Will you shut up, man?” the former vice president said.
Trump persisted: “Who is on your list, Joe? Who is on your list? He’s going to pack the court.”
After telling the president to shut up, Biden scoffed, “This is so unpresidential.”
“Keep yapping man!” Biden said in a departing shot.
“The people understand, Joe. In 47 years, you’ve done nothing. They understand,” Trump said.