WASHINGTON: The second and final debate will go ahead as scheduled in the run-up to the US presidential elections despite President Donald Trump tested positive for COVID-19 in early October.
During the debate, the microphones of both the presidential candidates will remain muted for portions of the debate, according to the nonpartisan Commission on Presidential Debates.
When asked, Trump said he would participate in the debate that will last for 90 minutes from 9:00 p.m. until 10:30 p.m. The event will take place at Belmont University in Nashville, Tennessee.
NBC’s Kristen Welker will moderate the event. Earlier, it was Chris Wallace of Fox News who moderated the first debate and USA Today’s Susan Page moderated the vice presidential debate.
Given the first chaotic faceoff between the two candidates, Welker has a difficult task to bring order to Thursday’s showdown debate between the septuagenarians.
Known for her calm demeanor and incisive questioning, Welker will have the help of the mute button. She has chosen six topics: fighting COVID-19, American families, race, climate change, and national security.
Fox News anchor Chris Wallace attracted censure over a hard-to-watch bickering fest the last time out.
Welker has been NBC´s White House correspondent since 2011. She also faces pressure as President Trump and his entourage claim she´s left-wing, an allegation they regularly throw at mainstream media figures.
Seeing the chaotic interruptions that plagued the first encounter last month, the commission announced that this time around, both the candidates would have their microphones cut off. They will have to deliver an opening two-minute answer to each of the six debate topics, the commission said.