Debate commission adding option to cut candidates’ mics: report
The Commission on Presidential Debates (CPD) will give future moderators the option to cut candidates’ microphones following complaints about Tuesday’s initial debate, CBS’s Norah O’Donnell reported Wednesday afternoon.
The report comes hours after the bipartisan body announced it would implement changes to make the remaining debates less chaotic.
EXCLUSIVE: @CBSNews has learned the Commission on Presidential Debates plans to issue strict new rules in the coming days that include cutting off a candidate’s microphone if they violate the rules, per an informed source.
More tonight on the @CBSEveningNews
— Norah O’Donnell (@NorahODonnell) September 30, 2020
“The Commission on Presidential Debates sponsors televised debates for the benefit of the American electorate. 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 CPD will be carefully considering the changes that it will adopt and will announce those measures shortly,” the group said in a statement Wednesday.
The announcement came after lawmakers and media figures expressed frustration and exhaustion with the first debates. President Trump frequently interrupted Democratic nominee Joe Biden and also sparred with moderator Chris Wallace of Fox News after he asked him to allow Biden to answer his questions per the rules.
“Mr. President, I’m the moderator of this debate and I’d like you to let me ask my questions,” Wallace eventually said.
“I guess I’m debating you, not him,” Trump responded. “I’m not surprised.”
The CPD has not yet formally announced what specific steps, if any, it will take to ensure adherence to the rules at further debates. Biden and Trump are set to square off again on Oct. 15 and 22, while Vice President Pence and Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.) will have their single debate on Oct. 7.
The Hill has reached out to the CPD for comment.