The Commission on Presidential Debates (CPD) will reportedly cut off former Vice President Joe Biden and President Trump if they exceed the two minutes allotted to them for commenting on topics during Thursday's debate in Nashville.
The commission said in a statement that it "had determined that it is appropriate to adopt measures intended to promote adherence to agreed upon rules and inappropriate to make changes to those rules.”
Also included in the debate will be an open discussion forum that won't include the mute option. Thursday’s debate will consist of six 15-minute segments, with 90 minutes total as in the first debate. Trump's and Biden's initial debate was widely panned as both candidates faced backlash for their behavior.
The two candidates skipped the second presidential debate after the former declined to participate in a virtual format. Announced on Monday, the new rule could draw scrutiny from the Trump campaign, which urged the commission earlier in the day to include more discussion of foreign policy in the next debate.
TRUMP CAMPAIGN SENDS LETTER TO DEBATE COMMISSION ASKING FOR MORE FOCUS ON FOREIGN POLICY
In a letter from campaign manager Bill Stepien, Trump's team accused the commission of adding to a broader pattern of "pro-Biden antics" with its choice of topics.
Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., previously suggested a "mute button" would be necessary for another debate to take place. "Maybe we should give the moderator a mute button, given how President Trump just interrupts at will," Schumer said a day after the first debate. "And the bottom line is Donald Trump doesn't follow the rules [and] the commission has got to get a lot tougher."
But for his counterpart in the House, Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., a mute button gave the moderator too much power. "If you are going to run for the free leader of this world we want to hear what you have to say, but now we're going to allow one person to moderate it to determine what the American people can hear from our candidates?" he previously asked "Fox & Friends."
As Stepien noted, the upcoming debate topics included fighting COVID-19, American families, national security, leadership, climate change, and race in America. The commission did not immediately respond to FeedLine.net' request for comment.
The Biden campaign responded to Stepien's letter by suggesting that he was lying.
"The campaigns and the Commission agreed months ago that the debate moderator would choose the topics,” National Press Secretary TJ Ducklo said in a statement provided to FeedLine.net.
“The Trump campaign is lying about that now because Donald Trump is afraid to face more questions about his disastrous COVID response. As usual, the president is more concerned with the rules of a debate than he is getting a nation in crisis the help it needs."
But Ali Pardo, Deputy Communications Director for the Trump campaign, told FeedLine.net that "[o]ver the past several months, the CPD [Commission on Presidential Debates] verbally confirmed on multiple occasions that the third debate would have a foreign policy focus."
FeedLine.net' Brooke Singman, John Roberts, and Brooke Singman contributed to this report.
Or (another similitude) is that of a rain-laden cloud from the sky: In it are zones of darkness, and thunder and lightning: They press their fingers in their ears to keep out the stunning thunder-clap, the while they are in terror of death. But Allah is ever round the rejecters of Faith! (The Cow 19 )