Joe Biden experiences disaster in first TV debate with Donald Trump

Before the TV debate against Donald Trump, Joe Biden went into hiding – in order to be well prepared for the duel. However, the US President’s appearance in front of an audience of millions is now raising questions.

US President Joe Biden made a shaky appearance in the first TV debate against his challenger Donald Trump and raised doubts about his suitability for the office. The TV debate on Thursday evening (local time) was seen as a test for the 81-year-old Democrat. During the roughly 90-minute-long exchange, Biden stumbled over his words regularly, spoke unclearly, quietly and with a hoarse voice. At times it was difficult to follow the most powerful man in the world. Although Biden was tough on his opponent Trump, he still seemed powerless and on the defensive. As usual, the Republican attacked Biden with aggressive rhetoric and repeated old accusations and lies. However, this was less significant because of Biden’s weak performance.

Baptism of fire in Atlanta

Biden is running for a second term in the presidential election in early November. The 78-year-old Trump wants to return to the White House for the Republicans. Polls suggest that the two will be neck and neck. A constant theme in the election campaign is the advanced age of the opponents. The TV duel heralded the hot phase of the US election campaign and was hosted by CNN in Atlanta, Georgia. Biden and Trump were not allowed to use cheat sheets during the exchange and had to speak freely. The debate took place without a studio audience. The microphone of the presidential candidate who was not speaking at the time was muted.

Biden had prepared intensively for the debate and had not made any public appearances in the week before the duel. According to US media, he had a cold, but a corona test was negative. During the TV spectacle, Biden and Trump were questioned by the moderators on a range of topics. The two politicians answered questions on economic policy, abortion, migration and also had to comment on international crises such as the Russian war of aggression in Ukraine or the Middle East conflict.

Joe Biden stumbles

Biden attacked Trump in the duel with unusually harsh words – calling him a “whiner” and a “loser”. The 81-year-old accused the Republican of having the “morals of a street dog”. But all the attacks had little impact because Biden regularly stumbled. Even US Vice President Kamala Harris spoke of a “bumpy start” after the duel. A quick poll by the US broadcaster CNN clearly saw Trump as the winner of the duel. According to the poll, 67 percent of those surveyed voted for Trump, only 33 percent saw Biden as the winner.

US media quoted unnamed Democratic Party officials as expressing concern after Biden’s appearance. The question arose as to whether Biden was really the right candidate for the White House, they said. Democrats expressed incomprehension that the US president was unable to score points on issues such as abortion, which is actually a winning issue for the Democrats.

Biden expressed hope for a return to the nationwide right to abortion – the country’s Supreme Court overturned this right two years ago. Abortions are necessary in some cases, he stressed. But then he obviously slipped up and said: “There are many young women who are raped by their in-laws, their spouses, brothers and sisters.” He often seemed to stare into space during the exchange and had his mouth open.

Donald Trump relies on usual rhetoric

Trump also came down hard on Biden, saying he was not fit to be US president. In a bizarre moment, the two discussed their skills on the golf course and challenged each other to a duel. Trump again spread various untruths, such as making false statements about certain economic data during his term in office compared to Biden’s. Once again, the Republican did not want to commit to whether he would accept the outcome of the election in November.

TV duel against Trump: Why Joe Biden should not fall over

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Trump lost to Biden in the 2020 presidential election, but has not yet admitted defeat. The Republican launched a campaign against the election result and tried by all means to reverse the outcome. This culminated in the violent attack by his supporters on the US Capitol on January 6, 2021. Biden therefore regularly accuses his opponent of being a threat to democracy.