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The Battalion

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One step away
June 8, 2024

Trump and Biden face off in second presidential debate

October+22+Presidential+Debate
Photo by via PBS News Hour Youtube
October 22 Presidential Debate

President Donald Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden faced off at the second presidential debate at the Curb Event Center in Nashville, Tenn.
The Oct. 22 debate was moderated by NBC White House News Correspondent Kristen Welker. Following the first presidential debate, this debate featured a “muted mic effect,” silencing the candidates microphones when their speaking time is up, to prevent either person from speaking over time. Below are the main topics from the debate.
1. COVID-19
Welker began by asking how each of the candidates plan to deal with pandemic. Trump answered by announcing the developments of vaccines to be used in the future. He also referenced his own experience contracting the virus, saying he is now “immune,” and insisted that the end of the pandemic is just around the corner.
Biden, however, heavily criticized how Trump has dealt with the virus thus far. While mentioning the need for every American to take precautions, such as using masks, Biden said Trump has no actual plan to solve the issues brought on by COVID-19 such as reopening schools and businesses.
Trump said a vaccine will be ready within weeks, or at least by the end of the year. Contrary to this, Biden said there is no way there will be a vaccine readily available to everyone according to Trump’s timeline, and added that the pandemic will not be over anytime soon.
Regarding schools, Trump prefers keeping classrooms open, as opposed to moving completely online, while Biden said more precautions and protective supplies should be provided to safely operate schools.
2. National Security
According to government officials, Welker said, there are groups attempting to commit voter fraud in Russia and Iran. Biden attributed Trump’s passiveness toward Russian fraud to the president’s inability to stand up to Vladimir Putin. Trump defended himself, saying no one has been tougher on Russia than him.
Biden said he has taken no money from foreign countries for personal benefit, after being accused of this by Trump. As this topic moved on into discussion of money, Trump explained the delay in the release of his tax history, saying he wants to release them, but has been treated poorly by the IRS. For this reason, he was reluctant to release the history after deciding to run for president. After this, Biden accused Trump of not paying taxes at all.
Returning to the topic of COVID-19, Welker asked Biden if he would make China pay for their lack of transparency throughout the pandemic. Biden simply stated that he would make China play by the international rules. Trump, however, said China has already paid, monetarily, for their mistakes.
The debate then turned to a discussion on North Korea. Trump credited the lack of nuclear war to his good relationship with leader Kim Jong Un, though North Korea is well-equipped with nuclear weapons. Biden then said Trump has only legitimized North Korea, making America more vulnerable, and prefers a sanction on all nuclear weapons in the Korean peninsula.
3. Families and economy
When asked about Trump’s desire to overturn the Affordable Care Act, the president said he wants to terminate Obamacare, and create a new healthcare system focused on caring for those with preexisting conditions. Biden said he plans to build on Obamacare with a public option, allowing for reduced premiums and drug prices, without taking away private insurance. Accessibility affordability should be the main concern regarding healthcare, according to Biden’s plan.
Responding to questions on poverty and minimum wage, Biden supports raising the minimum wage, while Trump wants to leave this decision up to the individual state governments.
4. Immigration
Trump said he plans to reunite immigrant families, while Biden said it is the government’s fault that the children were separated from their families in the first place. Welker asked Biden how he plans to change immigration policies, when the Obama administration was unable to. Biden responded by saying he will use his new position, if elected, to give more attention to this issue. Trump commented multiple times about cages found along the border, accusing the Obama administration of building them. The topic then turned to catch and release, in which an immigrant is allowed in the country awaiting a hearing to determine their future. Trump said many people don’t return for their hearing, then added that only those with the “lowest IQ” would consider returning.
5. Race in America
Welker brought up “the talk,” referring to people of color informing their children that they may be targeted sometime in their lives. Biden said he feels for the parents that have to tell their children that they may be treated unequally. Trump then accused Biden of racism in passing a crime bill in 1994, which Biden denied Trump’s accusation, saying Trump wishes to see more people in jail.
Trump was asked about his opinions on the Black Lives Matter movement and he responded saying he was “the least racist person in the room.” However, Biden said Trump’s decisions have not benefited the Black community the way he has claimed. When asked about bills passed regarding drug offenses, Biden said voting in favor of the legislation was a mistake, and now he prefers rehabilitation for drug and alcohol offenses rather than jail time. Trump then said Biden only spoke of change, but never acts on his words.
6. Climate change
Trump said carbon emissions have lowered during his administration, saying the Paris Agreement is not the way to go. Climate change is one of the most pertinent problems facing the human race today, according to Biden. Biden also added that giving more attention to climate change will provide the opportunity to create more jobs as well as help the environment.
While Biden said harvesting wind and solar energy will save energy in America, Trump said it will be more expensive to implement than it is worth. Biden defended his position on fracking, saying he hopes to eventually be able to capture the emissions from fracking sites. Still, Biden said he plans to move from oil and gas to clean energy alternatives.

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