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Friday, June 25, 2021

Final debate a chance for Trump to reset race

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Final debate a chance for Trump to reset race
Final debate a chance for Trump to reset race

[NFA] Thursday night's face-off may be one of Republican President Donald Trump's last opportunities to sway voters ahead of an election in which polls show him trailing Democratic challenger Joe Biden.

This report produced by Zachary Goelman.

President Donald Trump gets a final chance to make his case for re-election before a vast audience of Americans on Thursday night.

The Republican will square off against Democratic rival Joe Biden in their last debate before the Nov.

3 vote.

And Trump badly needs to alter the trajectory of the race.

He trails Biden significantly in national polls less than two weeks before Election Day, though the contest is much tighter in some key battleground states.

A contentious first debate was marred by Trump repeatedly interrupting Biden.

Trump passed up a second debate after it was switched to a virtual format in the wake of his COVID-19 diagnosis.

This time around, each candidate’s microphone will be switched off to give their opponent two uninterrupted minutes to respond to a topic.

Both mics will then be active for a discussion afterward.

Trump has already complained about the format, the topics, and the selection of moderator, NBC's Kristen Welker.

Welker is the first African-American woman to moderate a presidential debate in nearly three decades.

The topics will include the pandemic, race relations, climate change and national security.

Trump says he wants the debate to focus on foreign policy, and appears eager to bring up allegations that Biden's son Hunter tried to leverage his father's role as Vice President for a Ukrainian business.

Trump has also called Joe Biden a criminal, without evidence.

Biden spent the week off the campaign trail preparing for the debate.

The latest Reuters/Ipsos poll showed Biden up by nine points nationally, down from 12 points during the first week of October.

He retained a sizeable edge in the competitive states of Michigan and Wisconsin.

Opinion polls show there are relatively few undecided voters.

A record 42 million Americans have already cast ballots ahead of Thursday's debate.

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