Biden offers to debate Trump under new terms, bypassing debate commission

Daily News Egypt
4 Min Read

US President Joe Biden has extended an offer to engage in at least two debates with former President Donald Trump ahead of the upcoming election, The New York Times reported on Wednesday. 

However, notably, his campaign has been sidestepping the nonpartisan organisation responsible for managing presidential debates since 1988.

In a letter obtained by The New York Times, the Biden campaign outlines the terms under which the president would be willing to engage in a televised confrontation, something Trump has been vocally pushing for.

This includes a desire for the debates to commence as early as June, much sooner than proposed by the Commission on Presidential Debates.

The aim is to provide voters with an opportunity to witness both candidates side by side well ahead of early voting, set to begin in September.

The proposed format calls for the debates to take place within a TV studio, featuring automatic microphone cut-offs when speakers exceed their time limit. 

Moreover, Biden’s camp is adamant about limiting participation to just the two candidates and the moderator, excluding any independent or third-party candidates, and eschewing the lively in-person audiences that Trump has historically thrived upon.

Responding to Biden’s overture, Trump swiftly agreed to the proposed dates via a post on Truth Social. However, it remains uncertain whether Trump will accede to Biden’s other stipulations.

The Biden campaign’s move hints at a willingness to take calculated risks to overturn his current electoral fortunes, which, according to numerous battleground-state polls, show him trailing behind Trump. Biden’s struggle to convince voters of his effectiveness as a leader and economic steward is apparent in the polling landscape.

Despite trailing in several polls, President Biden appears unfazed, as reported by Axios. He remains confident in his prospects, a sentiment echoed by many of his closest advisers. 

Addressing donors during a West Coast visit, Biden asserted, “While the press doesn’t write about it, the momentum is clearly in our favour, with the polls moving towards us and away from Trump.”

However, Biden has also expressed scepticism regarding the accuracy of polling data, casting doubt on its methodology during a recent CNN interview. He questioned, “The polling data has been wrong all along. How many — you guys do a poll at CNN. How many folks [do] you have to call to get one response?”

The latest polling data from six battleground states critical to the presidential race — Arizona, Georgia, Michigan, Nevada, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin — paints a challenging picture for Biden. A recent New York Times/Siena survey, sampling over 4,000 individuals across swing states, revealed Trump leading in five of them among registered voters. Similarly, a Bloomberg News poll from last month depicted Biden trailing Trump in six out of seven swing states (including North Carolina).

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