Joe Biden Won the First Presidential Debate

Isabel Schindler, contributor

The first 2020 presidential debate has been highly anticipated, and it has proven to exceed expectations. With the election being as polarized as it is, it is no surprise that there was a significant amount of interrupting and name calling throughout the debate. There was not one issue that both parties could agree on. 

When asked about his Supreme Court nominee, Trump expressed that it is his constitutional obligation to nominate another Justice to fill Ruth Bader-Ginsburg’s spot. (As Trump promised, his nominee Amy Coney Barret was confirmed onto the Supreme Court on Oct. 27.) He also argued that Joe would do the same thing if he was in office. Biden on the other hand feels that this is an abuse of power, and that Trump is rushing to fill the seat before the election. 

When asked about his plans for healthcare, Trump stated that he had plans to cut drug prices, but didn’t mention a new option for healthcare plans. Biden shared his plan for healthcare, stating that it would not end private insurance, but would only support those who can not afford the current plans. Trump interrupted by saying that Biden agreed with Bernie Sanders on healthcare, and deemed him a part of the “manifesto.”  

The next topic was the pandemic, and more specifically what plan each candidate had to deal with COVID-19. Biden said that the president did not take the pandemic seriously from the start, and that he should have notified the country earlier and taken greater precautions. Trump responded by saying that he himself  did a “phenomenal” job at containing the virus and lowering the death rate, and that Biden could not do the job that he did. When asked about the vaccine, Trump said it was coming soon, but did not give an exact time. 

When Biden was asked if he could be better trusted with dealing with race issues in America, he said that he valued equality, and that Trump has divided the country and done virtually nothing to help the African American community. Trump responded by mentioning Biden’s crime bill of 1994, and said that he regarded the Black man as a “super predator.” He also went on to say that he has freed many Black people from jail, and that he is painted in a bad light by the left for being in support of “law and order.” When Trump was asked if he was willing to officially condemn white supremacists, he instead condemned Antifa. 

The last segment regarded the candidate’s stances on the fairness of this year’s election. Biden shared that the election will be fair, and that any claim that it will not be fair has been made with the intention of scaring people into believing that their vote will not be legitimate. Trump answered by claiming that many votes are not going to count, voter fraud will be “through the roof” this year, and that the election is rigged. 

Many have said that this debate was the worst in history, and it is clear why. Most questions were answered with criticism towards the other side, and instead of the candidates effectively portraying what they stood for, they made a much greater point to note what they stood against. Many questions were answered only slightly, and then the conversation turned into jabs at the other party. Although Joe Biden made a few efforts to address the American people, the debate mostly consisted of fighting and name calling from both opponents to the other. 

With that being said, I would say that the winner of the debate is Joe Biden. Although there were many points where he lacked an effective rebuttal, and instead opted to calling Trump a “liar” or telling him to “shut up, man,” he definitely did a better job at portraying his stances and plans for the country. Although the most prevalent objective of each candidate seemed to be to insult the other, Biden also showed a desire to address the American people.