There shouldn't be any debates between Biden and Trump
Speaker Nancy Pelosi said Thursday she doesn’t think there should be any presidential debates ahead of the November election, arguing Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden shouldn't "legitimize" a discussion with President Trump.
“I don’t think that there should be any debates,” Pelosi told reporters. “I do not think that the president of the United States has comported himself in a way that anybody has any association with truth, evidence, data and facts.”
“I wouldn’t legitimize a conversation with him nor a debate in terms of the presidency of the United States,” she added.
“I think that he’ll probably act in a way that is beneath the dignity of the presidency,” she said, citing what she called his “disgraceful” actions during the 2016 debates with former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.
“He does that every day,” she added. “But I think he will also belittle what the debates are supposed to be about.”
Instead, Pelosi proposed that the candidates take separate stages and answer questions about their policies in a “conversation with the American people” instead of “an exercise in skulduggery.”
But she acknowledged that the Biden campaign “thinks in a different way about this.”
The Speaker's remarks come as some within the Democratic Party have said Biden shouldn't participate in debates with Trump, pointing to the polling advantage Biden has over the president.
Pelosi had hinted that she didn't think Biden should debate Trump during an interview last week with David Axelrod on his podcast.
"My view, I wouldn't even debate Trump because unless you have a lie detector, or a truth teller," she told "The Axe Files," adding that Biden "has said he will, and that's great."
She also alleged the press have "enabled a lot of Trump to happen."
"Remember when he was stalking Hillary Clinton during the debate," she said. "Why wouldn't the press have said go back to your place? Why did they let that happen?"
The Biden campaign has dismissed advice to skip the debates, with a spokesman saying earlier this month that he looked forward to debating the president.
Biden on Thursday also addressed the Speaker's comments on MSNBC's "Andrea Mitchell Reports," confirming that he will debate Trump.
"I'm gonna debate him," he said. "I'm gonna be a fact-checker on the floor while I'm debating him."
"But look, I think everybody knows this man has a somewhat pathological tendency not to tell the truth," he added.
Several other Democratic leaders have said Biden shouldn’t fear debating Trump before the election, including Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.).
“We’ve had presidential debates for a long time now, and it’s been a way for a lot of people around the nation to be able to see the candidates in action,” Warren said.
Trump and his campaign have sought to cast doubt on Biden's mental fitness, emphasizing his past verbal gaffes, and have pushed for more debates and for them to take place sooner.
Biden himself said it is a "legitimate question" to ask about the mental fitness of any candidate over the age of 70, while dismissing Trump's attacks.
“The only thing I can say to the American people ... watch me,” Biden said in a recent interview with ABC News.
The president also requested the candidates take drug tests before the first debate against Biden in Cleveland on Sept. 29, suggesting that drugs had improved the former vice president's debate performance against Sen. Bernie Sanders in March.
The Commission on Presidential Debates has scheduled three debates between Biden and Trump and one between Vice President Mike Pence and Biden's running mate, Sen. Kamala Harris.
Donald Trump’s niece followed up her best-selling, tell-all book with a lawsuit Thursday alleging that the president and two of his siblings cheated her out of millions of dollars over several decades while squeezing her out of the family business. Mary L. Trump sought unspecified damages in the lawsuit, filed in a state court in New York City.
Manhattan’s district attorney said on Monday he might have grounds to investigate President Donald Trump and his businesses for tax fraud, as he seeks to persuade a federal appeals court to let him obtain Trump’s tax returns. Lawyers for District Attorney Cyrus Vance made the assertion in a filing with the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Manhattan, four days before it considers Trump’s request to block Vance’s August 2019 subpoena for the tax returns.
The imminent confirmation battle over RBG’s seat has prompted Trump to galvanize supporters from the rally stage—“Fill that seat!” they chanted Saturday—while Biden zeroes in on health care and Democrats open their wallets. Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s death, and the future of the nation’s highest court, quickly moved front and center in an election year marked by a pandemic, protests against racial injustice, and impeachment.
The Justice Department announced Monday that New York City, Seattle and Portland, Ore., would be designated as jurisdictions "permitting violence and destruction of property" under President Trump's early-September order requiring federal agencies to submit potential funding cuts for cities "permitting anarchy." In a statement, the agency hit leaders of the three cities for rejecting federal law enforcement assistance in quelling protests while pointing to ongoing demonstrations that have continued for weeks over the treatment of Black Americans by law enforcement.