As ‘Dumpster Fire’ Debate Rages, Jorgensen Quietly Presents an Alternative
“That was a shitshow,” CNN’s Dana Bash told viewers last night after Joe Biden and Donald Trump finished the first 2020 presidential debate. Her unusual on-camera candor was topped by co-host Jake Tapper, who summed it up thusly: “That was a hot mess inside a dumpster fire inside a train wreck. That was the worst debate I have ever seen.”
Congrats, 2020—you’ve gone and outdone yourself again!
Debate commentary on social media—and among Reason staffers—largely agreed. “A chaotic, horrendous debate,” Robby Soave called the affair, which was broadcast from Cleveland, Ohio. “Mostly unwatchable,” writes Eric Boehm. I could only tune in to the end of the debate, which gave the collective WTF-ing afterward an air of initial mystery. What had I missed? What did you—if you’re lucky—miss?
PBS Test Group:
Nobody changed their opinion and they all are disappointed
— John Kroencke (@johnkroencke) September 30, 2020
But for all the consternation, it doesn’t seem anything particularly out of the ordinary took place between Trump and Biden—just the run-of-the-mill sniping and lies we’ve come to loathe and expect. My Reason colleagues can give you more detail:
In any event, the Biden/Trump debate was worlds apart from another presidential campaign event which happened in Cleveland last night. This one featured Libertarian Party (L.P.) presidential nominee Jo Jorgensen, who will be on the ballot in all 50 states and the District of Columbia but was not allowed up on the debate stage with Biden and Trump. Instead, Jorgensen fielded video questions from voters and in-person questions from me last night.
The Jorgensen campaign initially planned to host this counter-programming from an outside stage in downtown Cleveland. But after local police objected to the setup, it was moved to a nearby indoor studio. While Biden and Trump flung outrageous accusations at one another and put moderator and Fox News anc
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