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Donald Trump and Joe Biden came to blows on-stage last week in their first debate, in a terse 90-minute exchange. Many Americans branded the event “toxic”, with little informative content and ballistic attacks of rhetoric. Surveys found the President came off worse of the two candidates, and he has since suffered in the polls, likely leaving him rearing to correct the course of the vote.
Is next week’s Presidential debate cancelled?
Officials had scheduled the two presidential candidates on three debate rounds this month.
The first came just over a week ago at the end of September, and the next two take place on October 15 and 22 respectively.
But people have raised questions as to whether the next one will go on as planned, given the President condition.
Mr Trump announced he had contracted COVID-19 on Friday last week, making him the latest world leader to do so.
He announced positive test results on October 2 for him and his wife, First Lady Melania Trump, casting doubt on future appearances.
He entered Walter Reed Medical Centre in the evening of the same day and cancelled campaign events.
The President pulled himself out of hospital 72 hours after admission and has now expressed his intentions to continue campaigning.
He wrote on Twitter earlier this week he would return to the campaign trail.
Mr Trump wrote: “Will be back on the Campaign Trail soon!!! The Fake News only shows the Fake Polls.”
He has not yet officially confirmed when he will return, meaning it is unclear whether he will debate Mr Biden next week.
Those who contract COVID-19 remain infectious for roughly two weeks, according to scientists, and given his diagnosis on October 2, this means Mr Trump would not stop shedding until October 16.
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If he entered the stage in this time, he would potentially expose Mr Biden to the disease.
As such, the Democrat has lead calls to cancel the next bout if Mr Trump still has COVID-19.
He told reporters from Maryland on Tuesday: “Well, I think if he still has COVID, we shouldn’t have a debate.
“I think we’re gonna have to follow very strict guidelines.”
“Too many people have been infected and it’s a very serious problem.”
He continued: “And so I’ll be guided by the guidelines of the Cleveland Clinic, and what the docs say is the right thing to do — if and when he shows up for debate.”
Mr Trump’s White House physician, Doctor Sean Conley, confirmed yesterday the President had “no symptoms” in a release yesterday.
But he is yet to confirm whether he has received any negative tests for COVID-19.
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