The second presidential debate has been canceled after both US President Donald Trump and Democratic nominee Joe Biden scheduled events on the same date, the Commission on Presidential Debates (CPD) said Friday.
After Trump was hospitalized for the coronavirus, the CPD decided to make the second debate virtual. The president vehemently rejected and called for the event to be postponed one week and to push back the final debate another week.
Biden then refused the proposal. Both candidates accused one another of trying to escape the debate.
Trump and Biden subsequently scheduled TV appearances on their own on the same day as Oct. 15.
“The campaigns of the two candidates who qualified for participation in the debate made a series of statements concerning their respective positions regarding their willingness to participate in a virtual debate on Oct. 15, and each now has announced alternate plans for that date,” a statement from the CPD said.
“It is now apparent there will be no debate on Oct. 15, and the CPD will turn its attention to preparations for the final presidential debate scheduled for Oct. 22,” the statement added.
The final debate is scheduled for Oct. 22, in Nashville, Tennessee.
The CPD has said that the debate will be divided into six 15-minute segments. “The topics for the six segments will be selected and announced by the moderator at least one week before the debate,” the CPD said. Kristen Welker from NBC News is set to be the moderator.
Welker will have the difficult task of making sure the debate does not spiral out of control, as was the case with the first debate moderated by Chris Wallace.