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New rules for US presidential debates needed – CPD

The campaigns of the two US candidates in November’s presidential election have confirmed Donald Trump and Joe Biden will appear at round two of the presidential debates.

 The two sides released statements on Thursday after the Commission on Presidential Debates (CPD) said it would look to change the format.

The decision of the independent body came following Wednesday’s fierce debate between President Trump and Former Vice-President Biden in Cleveland, Ohio, which many commentators labelled “the worst presidential debate ever”. The exchange between the Republican incumbent and his Democratic challenger was filled with personal attacks and interjections.

Criticism and calls for change started rolling in before the first debate even ended, with many suggesting a “mute button” system, which gained traction on social media.

The CPD released a statement on Wednesday, saying the events are for the benefit of Americans.

“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 statement read.

“The CPD will be carefully considering the changes that it will adopt and will announce those measures shortly,” it added.

The Commission has not yet specified what the changes will be.

Wednesday morning’s ninety-minute debate has been described as chaotic and a “s***show” with constant interruptions and candidates straying away from the questions asked.

Speaking at a campaign stop later on Wednesday, Mr. Biden suggested the use of a mute button, saying he hoped organisers of future debates would be able to turn off the microphone of the candidate who is not speaking.

“It was a national embarrassment,” Mr. Biden said of the debate and President Trump’s performance.

The mute button idea quickly gained traction on social media during and after the event.

Speaking at his own campaign rally in Minnesota on Wednesday, the President did not refer to the CPD’s statement or any potential format changes.

More than 73 million people reportedly watched the first debate on TV, more than any other television event since the 2020 Super Bowl.

But it didn’t meet the same ratings as the first debate between Mr. Trump and former First Lady Hillary Clinton in 2016, which attracted an audience of 84 million.

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