Ksenija Pavlovic Mcateer: No Such Thing As “High-Stakes” In First Presidential Debate

Tonight’s Trump-Biden debate will only make each camp more determined to bring their candidate over the finish line, Ksenija Pavlovic Mcateer predicts. The knives are out, and if you are expecting a night of good ‘ole political decorum, you may be better off tuning out at 9 o’clock. 


 

Photo credit: Tanjug/AP

During the impeachment trials, voters demonstrated their preference, and, as Election Day approaches, this trend strengthens. It will be the first time Biden and Trump stand side by side, putting their best faces forward, as they each attempt to convince the American public it is he who should lead America through 2024. 

Tonight’s debate in Cleveland will be moderated by Fox News Sunday anchor and moderator, Chris Wallace, who has traditionally been tough on Trump, an unusual characteristic for the otherwise faithfully conservative network. Wallace moderated the 2016 debate between Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton, and one might expect him to handle tonight’s in a similar manner.

Wallace chose a mix of current issues, as well as some topics familiar to the public, on which the positions of the candidates are well-known. Promising one hour of entertaining political television, these two candidates will touch on this year’s peculiar set of “current” issues, including the coronavirus pandemic, racial division and violence on the streets, the Supreme Court nomination, the economy, and the integrity of the election. 

“Trump will be Trump,”  Corey Lewandowski once said. If we know one thing, we know he won’t shy away from throwing punches at Biden, no doubt utilizing his favorite readymade put-downs. How Biden will respond, however,  is yet to be seen. Although, Trump may surprise us and change his tactics. This would require him to stick to the point, focusing on his voters and those undecided, which only make up, according to the latest numbers, 14%.

The latest WaPo/ABC Poll gives Biden 54% over Trump’s 45% in the battleground state of Pennsylvania, showing that the former Vice President is doing very well in Philadelphia’s suburbs. The other polls, so far all indicate an 8-point lead for Biden.

Those who plan on voting for Trump say that they do not believe the polls, citing the polls’ failure in 2016. Should the numbers veer towards Trump’s favor, would they be willing to say the same? The truth is, even Biden must know that the polls did not predict the winner last time. They failed to do so so badly that Hillary was driven to write a whole book addressing, “What Happened?”. As much as the polls can be helpful and encouraging, for Biden, he can't rely on them for anything more than a boost in self-confidence.

Trump, rests his faith on the “silent majority,” those who feel silenced by the echo chambers of media and the woke cancel culture with a lentil soup ordre de jour. Those forgotten about and left behind as the rest of society descended into a technological haze.  If these 2020 elections are promising to be different in any way, it will surely be for exposing the fact that politics is shaping not only our lives, but our lifestyles, and quelle suprise, many are not happy.

While the news headlines state that the presidential debate is high-stakes, we will have, in the end, the tale of the two cities interpreting the same event. Both sides will be victorious, as long as each side is looking at its own conclusions and vilifying its own opponent.

“Nothing is off the table,” Schumer warned recently, regarding whether or not Trump would nominate a candidate for the Supreme Court. He did. The knives are out, and if you are expecting a night of good ‘ole political decorum, you may be better off tuning out at 9 o’clock. 

Whatever you choose, the outcome of the debate will match the pre-decided voters’ preferences and headlines. Brought to you, by popular demand: Biden triumphs, Trump triumphs. The two disjointed political worlds will each think they got their own prediction right. One of them, for sure, will be a loser.

Until the polling stations close on November 3rd, do not rush with placing your bets, high-stakes are only for the prime time sitcom’s season finale. In the real world, America will rise coolly into a new dawn.


 

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