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Monday, January 30, 2023
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Arguably the most memorable moment of the debate was when a fly landed on Pence’s head and stayed there for two whole minutes, as he was in the middle of denying the existence of systematic racism in our country.

Flies and childlike name-calling — a look into the two debates

This was maybe the worst presidential debate in American history,” NPR stated. The first presidential debate of 2020 between candidates Donald Trump and Joe Biden was a total disaster — and disaster might be an understatement. 

During this 90 minute showdown, Trump railed into Biden, constantly interrupting him — along with the moderator Chris Wallace — at every chance he got. Trump brutally interrupted Biden every time he spoke, while Biden seemingly just stood there looking confused most of the time. 

This debate did not do any candidate any favors, basically doing nothing and keeping the polls stagnant. It was just an embarrassment for both of them.

We all know Trump does not play by the “rules” but last Tuesday, he crossed the line. This debate needed to be serious, focusing on the major downfalls of our country specifically within this past year, but instead, it turned into an absolute joke.

Here are some of the major downfalls of this debate:

  1. Trump decided to attack Biden’s son Hunter and bring up his history of drug abuse. This immediately backfired, when Biden grasped this opportunity to confront this issue and he turned it into a moment of sympathy and care. This was a perfect example of how Trump absolutely took things too far.
  2. This debate was also the perfect opportunity for Trump to expand on issues to gain more voters, but this all failed when he failed to denounce white supremacy
  3. Biden did not do particularly well in this debate either. He retorted Trump’s childishness with further childishness by calling Trump a “clown” during the debate.
  4. Rather than addressing his stances on certain issues, Biden focused more on Trump’s antics and missed a lot of opportunities where he could have shut down Trump and gained voter appeal.
  5. Another failed attempt during this craziness was Trump’s attempt to associate Biden with the far left of the Democratic Party. He falsely claimed that Biden was for defunding the police.
  6. The looming issue of the pandemic did not help President Trump. Over 200,000 Americans have died due to COVID-19 and the fight is not even close to over, yet he failed to address this. Trump’s tactics handling this pandemic were heavily criticized by Wallace and Biden. Rather than focusing his upcoming plans on defeating the virus, Trump continued to hurl insults.  

These are just some examples of how this debate was just flat out terrible. No candidate properly addressed any issues and both Trump and Biden embarrassed themselves to the American people.

This debate furthered the political polarization in this country and failed to unify a country in desperate need of unification. 

When asking Americans their thoughts on this debate there was one thing they all agreed on — it was a complete disaster

The main issue with this whole debate was that President Trump did not let Biden get a single word in. CNN anchor Jake Tapper said, “it wasn’t even in a debate. It was a disgrace. And it’s primarily because of President Trump. … We’ll talk about who won the debate, who lost the debate, but I can tell you one thing for sure: The American people lost tonight because that was horrific.” 

This was easily the worst presidential debate in history, researchers say. The constant interruptions made this event absolutely unwatchable. 

The one and only Vice Presidential debate which took place on October 7th was less disastrous than what we witnessed with Trump and Biden. There were fewer interruptions but unfortunately, the Presidential candidates and the Vice Presidential candidates shared one thing in common — they avoided answering questions as any “good” politician does. 

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Trump and Biden barely answered any of the moderator’s questions with their constant interruptions and distractions. Pence and Harris — while more civil — also constantly dodged the questions asked. 

Specifically, when asked on whether or not the President would commit to a peaceful transfer of power, Pence sidestepped the question and harked back to the Democrats impeaching President Trump. Pence also deflected the Trump administration’s failure with the pandemic and the economy, while Harris artfully avoided the subject of court-packing.

Harris used Pence’s evasion of pandemic related questions to her advantage by pointing out the continuous failures of the current administration.  She asked the American people an illuminating question, “How calm were you when you panicked about where you were going to get your next roll of toilet paper?" highlighting the chaos that ensued early on due to the administration’s shoddy handling of the pandemic and their persistent lying.

Arguably the most memorable moment of the debate was when a fly landed on Pence’s head and stayed there for two whole minutes, as he was in the middle of denying the existence of systematic racism in our country. 

All in all, this was way better than the embarrassing showdown between our two Presidential candidates. The VP debate represented a more traditional exchange as both Harris and Pence held themselves higher than their counterparts.  

The next debate between the Presidential candidates was scheduled to take place Thursday, Oct. 15, but has been canceled due to Trump’s refusal to participate in a virtual debate after his recent COVID-19 diagnosis. 

Pending updates on the COVID-19 outbreak in the White House, Trump and Biden will have one more opportunity for redemption on Oct. 22 in their final presidential debate.

Samantha is a junior studying Strategic Communications, with a certificate in Digital Studies. What are your thoughts about the first presidential debate? Do you think it was a disaster? Send all comments to

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