Few weeks to the United States presidential election, the first presidential debate between president Donald Trump and his challenger Joe Biden on Tuesday deteriorated into a bitter showdown as both candidates engaged in a heated and at times ugly exchange of words.
President Trump who is the Republican candidate seeking a second term relentlessly interrupted and attacked his Democratic rival during clashes over healthcare, economy, coronavirus pandemic, the future of the supreme court and climate change.
With just five weeks left until election day, Tuesday’s debate, moderated by Chris Wallace was perhaps Trump’s best opportunity yet to shift the dynamics of the race, which has been remarkable steady throughout an exceptional turbulent summer which sees him trailing in national and battleground state polls. It’s unclear whether the debate will do much to change those dynamics.
Trump accused Biden of being a leftist and promoting socialism. Biden openly called Trump a racist and told him to “shut up” as Trump repeatedly tried to goad Biden with interruptions.
According to a count by CBS News, both candidates talked over each other in the 90-minute debate in Cleveland, Ohio but Trump cut in some 73 times.
Biden accused Trump of being the “worst president America has ever had”, the president shot back that he had done “more in 47 months than you’ve done in 47 years”, an indictment of the former vice-president’s long career in Washington.
But even as Trump attempted to pin Biden, he trampled his own message with a stunning refusal to condemn white nationalism and commit to a peaceful transition of power.
Wallace, who pleaded with both men to stop talking over each other as he struggled at times to keep the debate on track. Biden tried to push back against Trump, sometimes looking right at the camera to directly address viewers rather than the president and snapping, “It’s hard to get a word in with this clown.”
The moderator repeatedly reminded Trump that his campaign had agreed to terms of the debate that gave each candidate time to state their views without interruption.
Describing the debate as ‘awful’, Paul Beck, a political science professor at Ohio State University said “it was awful. It was hardly a debate. What we saw was Trump being Trump which was out of control most of the time.”
UN Envoy Expects “Common Ground” In Syrian Political Process
The visiting united nations special envoy for Syria, Geir Pedersen said on Sunday he hopes that common ground could be found to help push forward the Syrian political process.
Pedersen made the remarks after meeting with Syrian foreign minister, Walid Al-Moallem in the Syrian capital, Damascus. He said his discussions with the minister touched on issues related to un security council resolution 2254, which was endorsed in 2015, and laid forward a roadmap to politically resolve the Syrian war.
Pedersen said he hoped for the “beginning of something new,” as he meets with the opposition, and that parties can try to find more common ground on how to move the process forward.
Early US Vote Total Nears 60m; Exceeds 2016
It’s exactly eight days to the U.S. Elections, but already, nearly sixty million Americans have cast their ballots in early voting across the country. These early ballots have already surpassed by nearly fifty percent those who voted early during all of 2016.
Democrats have been dominating early voting, but republicans are slowly narrowing the gap. That’s because in-person early voting has kicked off in several states, and president Donald Trump has convinced many supporters not to use mail-in ballots with his unfounded warnings about mail-voting fraud.
US “Not To Control The Pandemic” As Death Toll Nears 230,000
The US White House chief of staff, Mark Meadows, has said on Sunday the United States is “not to control the pandemic” despite surging coronavirus cases and death toll.
The center for systems science and engineering at the Johns Hopkins University puts the total number of confirmed cases in the country has surpassed eight and a half million persons, and deaths resulting from the virus have risen to more than two hundred twenty-five thousand on Sunday.
During an interview with CNN’s Jake Tapper on Sunday, meadows said, quote, “we’re not going to control the pandemic. We are going to control the act that we get vaccines, therapeutics and other mitigation areas,” end quote.
When asked why the country is not going to get control of the pandemic, meadows said, quote, “because it is a contagious virus just like the flu.”
Meadows’ statement came one day after chief of staff to vice-president mike pence, and four others tested positive for the coronavirus and were quarantined.
Former head of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, Dr. Scott Gottlieb, tweeted on Sunday that coronavirus hospitalizations, a critical and objective measure o the disease burden in the U.S., are starting to accelerate, reaching nearly forty-two thousand on that day. He said criteria for hospital admission has been tightened over time, making the high numbers more concerning.
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