The next presidential debate, if there is one, could look very different from Tuesday’s match between President Donald Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden.
And, if you look at the response by many to that first debate, that may not be a bad thing.
The Commission on Presidential Debates said Wednesday it will be making changes to the format of the remaining two debates after the first meeting between the two candidates devolved into a 90-minute yelling match complete with constant interruptions and one candidate telling the other to “shut up.”
The commission is considering cutting off the candidates' microphones if they break the rules, according to a source familiar with the commission’s deliberations, CBS reported. The story went on to say that the plans for the next debate have not been finalized and the commission may consider other measures.
“The CPD will be carefully considering the changes that it will adopt and will announce those measures shortly,” the organization said. “The Commission is grateful to Chris Wallace for the professionalism and skill he brought to last night’s debate and intends to ensure that additional tools to maintain order are in place for the remaining debates.”
Tim Murtaugh, communications director for the Trump campaign, said the commission’s decision to make changes to subsequent debates was tantamount to “moving the goalposts.”
“They’re only doing this because their guy got pummeled last night,” he said in a statement. “President Trump was the dominant force and now Joe Biden is trying to work the refs. They shouldn’t be moving the goalposts and changing the rules in the middle of the game.”
Biden’s deputy campaign manager, Kate Bedingfield, said the former vice president will be ready to answer questions from the crowd in the next debate, which is structured as a town hall event where 15-20 participants will be in the audience asking questions.
“He’ll be focused on answering questions from the voters there, under whatever set of rules the Commission develops to try to contain Donald Trump’s behavior,” she said in a statement. “The president will have to choose between responding to voters about questions for which he has offered no answers in this campaign — or repeating last night’s unhinged meltdown.”
Republican National Committee Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel told Fox News that the commission should not make any adjustments without the support of both campaigns. McDaniel said that rule changes should not be made “in the middle of the campaign.”
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