US Presidential Debate 2020: Trump Attacks India; Biden Says "Inshallah"

The first US presidential debate of Elections 2020 on September 29 was a very chaotic affair. It was characterized by constant interruptions by President Donald J. Trump and exchange of unprecedented insults with Democratic presidential nominee Joseph R. Biden. Chris Wallace, the Fox News anchor and moderator, found it impossible to bring order in spite of his best efforts. It resembled Pakistani Talk Shows with all the yelling, screaming, drama and insults. Trump attacked India twice during the debate. At one point, Biden said "Inshallah". 

Trump refused to denounce white supremacists and questioned the integrity of the elections.  Trump also attacked Biden’s intelligence at several points during the contentious debate. Biden called Trump a "clown" and told him to "shut up" at one point. 

Trump questioned India's coronavirus data while responding to Biden's accusation that his opponent has badly mishandled the pandemic. About 21 minutes into the debate, Trump said: "And, by the way, when you talk about numbers, you don’t know how many people died in China. You don’t know how many people died in Russia. You don’t know how many people died in India. They don’t exactly give you a straight count, just so you understand".  

Officially, North America (particularly US & Mexico) has suffered 303,600 coronavirus deaths, the highest COVID19 death toll in the world . It’s followed by SouthAmerica (248,700), Europe (220,600), Asia (189,900), Africa (35,200) as of Sept 28,2020, according to Axios.  US, with 200,000 deaths, accounts for two-thirds of all deaths in North America.  Asia accounts for about 60% of the global population.  India, with a death toll near 100,000, accounts for over half of all deaths in Asia. 

Global Coronavirus Deaths By Continents. Source: Axios

Talking about climate change, Trump accused India of being a leading polluter. About an hour into the debate, Trump said: "China sends up real dirt into the air. Russia does. India does. They all do". There are reports suggesting India has surpassed China as the world's top polluter. Images captured by the Dutch space instrument, Tropomi, show high concentrations pollutants like Nitrogen dioxide, Ozone and other pollutants produced by car traffic, industry and power stations in India, according to a Business Insider report.

India Top Polluter. Source: Business Inside

About 15 minutes into the debate, Biden used the word "Inshallah" while demanding Trump's tax returns.  Pressing Trump on when the American public would get to see his long-anticipated tax returns, Biden questioned: "When? Inshallah?" "Inshallah" is often considered as a non-committal response by some in the Muslim world. 

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Comment by Riaz Haq on September 30, 2020 at 4:41pm

#PresidentialDebate2020: Debate commission adding option to cut candidates' mics following complaints about Tuesday’s initial debate: report. #Trump #Biden

https://thehill.com/homenews/campaign/519008-debate-commission-addi...

The Commission on Presidential Debates (CPD) will give future moderators the option to cut candidates’ microphones following complaints about Tuesday’s initial debate, CBS’s Norah O’Donnell reported Wednesday afternoon.

The report comes hours after the bipartisan body announced it would implement changes to make the remaining debates less chaotic.

“The Commission on Presidential Debates sponsors televised debates for the benefit of the American electorate. Last night’s debate made clear that additional structure should be added to the format of the remaining debates to ensure a more orderly discussion of the issues. The CPD will be carefully considering the changes that it will adopt and will announce those measures shortly,” the group said in a statement Wednesday.

The announcement came after lawmakers and media figures expressed frustration and exhaustion with the first debates. President Trump frequently interrupted Democratic nominee Joe Biden and also sparred with moderator Chris Wallace of Fox News after he asked him to allow Biden to answer his questions per the rules.

“Mr. President, I’m the moderator of this debate and I’d like you to let me ask my questions,” Wallace eventually said.

“I guess I’m debating you, not him,” Trump responded. “I’m not surprised.”

The CPD has not yet formally announced what specific steps, if any, it will take to ensure adherence to the rules at further debates. Biden and Trump are set to square off again on Oct. 15 and 22, while Vice President Pence and Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.) will have their single debate on Oct. 7.

The Hill has reached out to the CPD for comment.

Comment by Riaz Haq on October 1, 2020 at 10:34pm

#Trump Tests Positive for the #Coronavirus. The result came after he spent months playing down the severity of the outbreak that has killed more than 207,000 in the #UnitedStates and hours after insisting that “the end of the pandemic is in sight.” https://www.nytimes.com/2020/10/02/us/politics/trump-covid.html?smi...

Mr. Trump has refused for months to wear a mask in public on all but a few occasions and repeatedly questioned their effectiveness while mocking Mr. Biden for wearing one. Trailing in the polls, the president in recent weeks increasingly held crowded campaign events in defiance of public health guidelines and sometimes state and local governments.

---------------

“The president and first lady are both well at this time, and they plan to remain at home within the White House during their convalescence,” the physician, Sean P. Conley, said in a statement without saying how long that would be. “Rest assured I expect the president to continue carrying out his duties without disruption while recovering, and I will keep you updated on any future developments.”

Other aides to the president would not say whether he was experiencing symptoms, but people at the White House noticed that his voice sounded raspy on Thursday, although it was not clear that it was abnormal for him, especially given the number of campaign rallies he has been holding lately.

Mr. Trump received the test result after one of his closest advisers, Hope Hicks, became infected, bringing the virus into his inner circle and underscoring the difficulty of containing it even with the resources of a president. Mr. Trump has for months played down the severity of the virus and told a political dinner just Thursday night that “the end of the pandemic is in sight.”


Mr. Trump’s positive test result could pose immediate difficulties for the future of his campaign against former Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr., his Democratic challenger, with just 33 days before the election on Nov. 3. Even if Mr. Trump, 74, remains asymptomatic, he will have to withdraw from the campaign trail and stay isolated in the White House for an unknown period of time. If he becomes sick, it could raise questions about whether he should remain on the ballot at all.

Even if he does not become seriously ill, the positive test could prove devastating to his political fortunes given his months of diminishing the seriousness of the pandemic even as the virus was still ravaging the country and killing about 1,000 more Americans every day. He has repeatedly predicted the virus “is going to disappear,” asserted that it was under control and insisted that the country was “rounding the corner” to the end of the crisis. He has scorned scientists, saying they were mistaken on the severity of the situation.

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