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Debate Watch 2020: A beginning to the end

Trump and Biden debate in Nashville.
Trump and Biden debate in Nashville.

Thursday’s debate between President Donald Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden signaled the winding down of arguably the most important presidential election of our lifetimes. 

Last night was just the second debate between the presidential candidates due to complications by Trump’s positive COVID-19 diagnosis, which he announced October 2. The Republican candidate refused to partake in a virtual debate on October 15, out of COVID-19 precaution, so each instead held a town hall. 

A milder performance

The final debate took place at Belmont University in Nashville, Tennessee. Kristen Welker moderated the event, doubling down on expectations to answer questions and respect the opposing candidate’s time to speak. Before Welker began asking questions, she noted microphones would be turned off if necessary, in reference to the interruption-plagued first debate. 

Topics included fighting COVID-19, national security, American families, immigration, race in America, climate change and leadership. Trump often brought up Hunter Biden’s Ukraine dealings, while Biden hit home on Trump’s failure to effectively respond to the COVID-19 pandemic. 

These discussions didn’t really reveal anything new, given the subjects were similar to the first debate. As best-selling author Brit Bennett pointed out on Twitter, discussions around concerns of Black voters typically correlated with crime. While talking about race in America, Trump noted Biden’s support of the 1994 crime bill, which resulted in the mass incarceration of Black and brown Americans. Biden’s response was that it was a “mistake.”  Trump also said, “Nobody has done more for the Black community than Donald Trump” since Abraham Lincoln and that he was “the least racist person in the room.” 

The election is 11 days away and over 52 million people have already voted. If you plan on voting by mail, it is recommended to drop your ballot in an official drop box or to send through USPS as soon as possible. If you still need to register, check if your state’s deadline has passed here. For a full fact check of the debate, visit Factcheck.org. 

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Haley Bosselman
Haley Bosselman is the editor-in-chief of Culturas. She grew up in Orange County and moved to Los Angeles after earning her bachelor's degree in journalism from Arizona State University. In May 2020, Haley completed the Master of Science in journalism program at the University of Southern California. She's written a lot about music, but is geared toward any culture-related storytelling.
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