The Commission on Presidential Debates announced late on Monday evening that it is making changes for the upcoming debate later this week, which will be the second and final debate.
“As in the first debate, each candidate will be allotted two minutes of speaking time to initially answer the moderator’s questions,” The New York Times reported. “But under a plan announced on Monday by the Commission on Presidential Debates, his opponent’s microphone will be turned off during that period, an attempt to ensure an uninterrupted response.”
The Times added that “after the candidates finish their two-minute replies, they will be allowed to freely engage with one another for the remainder of the segment.”
“We realize, after discussions with both campaigns, that neither campaign may be totally satisfied with the measures announced today,” the commission said in a statement. “One may think they go too far, and one may think they do not go far enough. We are comfortable that these actions strike the right balance and that they are in the interest of the American people, for whom these debates are held.”
Bill Stepien, Trump 2020 campaign manager, responded to the new debate changes by saying:
President Trump is committed to debating Joe Biden regardless of last minute rule changes from the biased commission in their latest attempt to provide advantage to their favored candidate. This was supposed to be the foreign policy debate, so the President still looks forward to forcing Biden to answer the number one relevant question of whether he’s been compromised by the Communist Party of China. Why did Biden allow his son Hunter to sell access to him while he was vice president, and why were there Chinese payment arrangements for Joe himself worked out by Hunter and his sketchy partners? If the media won’t ask Joe Biden these questions, the President will, and there will be no escape for Biden.
The announcement comes after President Donald Trump and Democrat presidential nominee Joe Biden repeatedly interrupted each other during the first presidential debate hosted by Chris Wallace—who was accused of bias over how he handled the debate.
The Trump campaign slammed the commission earlier in the day for appearing to not dedicate a portion of the debate to “foreign policy,” which comes as Biden faces renewed scrutiny over his actions as vice president in relation to his son’s foreign business dealings.