The first Presidential debate of 2020

President Donald J. Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden participated in the first 2020 Presidential Debate on September 29.


Gage Skidmore

Photo illustration of President Donald J. Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden.

2020 has been an unprecedented year, and Americans have rallied together to overcome the obstacles their nation has faced in an unprecedented way. While 2020 may be synonymous with the ongoing pandemic, it is also a Presidential Election year.

Last Tuesday, the two Presidential candidates met face-to-face to debate and express their stances on current issues. The areas of discussion were chosen by the debate moderator, Fox News Journalist Chris Wallace. The topics selected by Wallace included President Trump’s recent Supreme Court Justice Nomination Amy Coney Barrett, the nation’s economic recovery as a result of the pandemic, and the potential voting issues related to the upcoming election, particularly concerning mail-in ballots.

Both candidates strongly voiced their opinions throughout each topic’s discussion, often talking over each other and engaging in fierce back-and-forth conversation.

Wiregrass students weighed in on the debate via Instagram on The Stampede’s story throughout the night. Of the 228 students who stated that they watched the debate on September 29, 60% feel that watching the debate gave them clarity on who they would vote for on November 3.

Students also voiced their opinions on what the next debate should look like. Many students believe that the next debate would be better off uninterrupted by both candidates.

“I hope it is handled more like a debate with turn-taking and less interruptions,” Junior Hannah Miller said. “Being professional and having respect goes a long way, especially in politics.”

Others hope for a wider variety of debate topics to be covered and an increase in the allotted time each candidate has to express their positions.

“Our job as people is to educate ourselves on our future leaders; however, the past debate was more immature and chaotic rather than a concise explanation of each candidates beliefs,” Senior Payton Zerance said.

The Commission on Presidential Debates has announced that they are considering revising the rules for future debates.

With just 28 days until Election Day, there are three debates scheduled: two additional Presidential debates taking place on October 15 and October 22, and a Vice Presidential debate between Vice President Mike Pence and Senator Kamala Harris on October 7.