President Trump and Joe Biden took part in their first of three Presidential debates of the 2020 general election on Tuesday night in Cleveland.
There was so much buzz and the debate trended on social media and mainstream news channels. It was contentious and full of interruptions and has continued to draw different reactions all over the world.
The two candidates squared off about the coronavirus response, health care, the economy, among other topics while weaving in references to their opponent’s job performance and even dragging their families into the fight.
Here are the key takeaway from the debate
Racism was the Major Talking Point from the Debate
Trump was asked whether he would condemn white supremacists and militia groups and instead of directly answering the question, Trump instead blamed the months of violence in US cities on “left-wing groups.”
“Sure, I’m willing to do that,” Trump first replied, with Wallace asking him to do it, before Trump turned the discussion away from white supremacists and shifted blame. “But I would say almost everything I see is from the left wing, not from the right wing.”
Trump then spoke directly to a noted hate organization: “Proud Boys, stand back and stand by. But I’ll tell you what, somebody has to do something about antifa and the Left.”
Trump May Not Concede if He Loses
Both candidates were asked if they would urge their supporters to remain calm and not take to the streets if the election is close and counting continues. Trump said he was urging his supporters to be vigilant about the actual voting on election day. “I am urging my supporters to go into the polls and watch very carefully,” Trump said. Biden said Trump “has no idea what he’s talking about”. “Once the winner is declared after all the ballots are counted, that will be the end of it,” Biden said.
Trump, Biden Bring Their Families Into it
Unsurprisingly, Trump brought up Biden’s son Hunter, whose business dealings in China and Ukraine have been the focus of Republican criticism. Trump mentioned a finding from a recent Senate Republican investigation saying that the mayor of Moscow gave Hunter Biden $3.5m.
“What did he do to deserve it?” Trump asked Biden.
“Totally discredited,” Biden said. “My son did nothing wrong.”
Biden then shot back saying if Trump wanted to drag family into this debate, they could talk about the Trumps “all night.”