Local professor, voters speak on final presidential debate
SALISBURY, Md. – The final debate between President Donald Trump and Democratic Nominee Joe Biden is in the books, and after a chaotic first debate riddled with interruptions and personal attacks, voters on Delmarva say Thursday’s night debate was a step in the right direction.
“As a viewer, I enjoyed watching [Thursday] night’s debate much more than the first one,” Carissa Antonis, a student at Salisbury University, said.
“As compared to the last debate, they were both a little more subdued, they weren’t interrupting the moderator as much,” Another student, Evan Murphy, said.
Salisbury University professor Dr. Joshua Bolton says the less chaotic debate should help voters have a more clear understanding of the two men vying for the White House.
“The first debate we had lots of interruption and arguing back and forth. This one was much more of a traditional style of debate, so voters got a really good chance to see a comparison side by side of both candidates,” Dr. Bolton said.
Voters we spoke to agree, saying the more peaceful debate did help them actually pay attention to each candidate’s stance on issues they really care about.
“The issue that stuck out to me the most was them talking about Covid. I think that provided the most stark difference between Trump and Biden,” Murphy said.
“I’m glad that certain points were talked about. Healthcare, for example, that was a really important segment,” Antonis added.
Within seconds of the debate ending, posts flooded social media talking about who “won” the debate. But Dr. Bolton says the night was a success for both candidates.
“Who won the debate doesn’t matter much, from what I’ve seen from polling, both candidates got a positive bump from last night,” he explained.
But will those positive bumps be enough? Dr. Bolton says with less than two weeks until election day, Thursday night’s debate was really meant to attract citizens who may not plan on voting at all.
“At this point in the game what we’re trying to figure out is, people that are leaning one way but maybe aren’t going to vote, those are the people that are getting targeted,” Dr. Bolton said.