Trump refuses to participate in virtual TV debate with Biden

Washington, Oct 8 (efe-epa).- United States President Donald Trump said Thursday that he will not participate in a second televised debate with his Democratic rival Joe Biden if it is virtual.

The commission running the presidential debate had announced that the head-to-head scheduled to take place in Miami on 15 October would be held remotely.

Trump and a growing number of White House staff have tested positive for Covid-19 in recent days.

He said the decision was an attempt to “protect” the Democratic candidate.

“I’m not gonna waste my time on a personal debate. Sit behind a computer, ridiculous. They cut you off… I’m not doing a virtual debate,” he told Fox Business Channel.

Biden’s team, which has expressed concerns in recent days about the debate as it will take place less than two weeks after Trump tested positive, said the former vice president would participate in a virtual event.

The commission decided the candidates would be in separate locations to protect the health and safety of everyone involved after concerns were raised by health experts.

Only moderator Steve Scully of C-SPAN television and the public would be at the Adrienne Arsht Center for the Arts in Miami-Dade County, Florida.

Biden’s campaign said in a statement: “Vice-President Biden looks forward to speaking directly to the American people and comparing his plan for bringing the country together and building back better with Donald Trump’s failed leadership on the coronavirus that has thrown the strong economy he inherited into the worst downturn since the Great Depression.”

Trump, who was admitted to a military hospital last week after contracting Covid, told Fox he had not been informed of the changes before they were publicly announced.

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