US President Donald Trump and former Vice President and Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden speak during the first presidential debate at the Health Education Campus of Case Western Reserve University on September 29, 2020 in Cleveland, Ohio.
  • US President Donald Trump says he will not be taking part in a virtual second presidential debate.
  • The US Commission on Presidential Debates announced this decision to “protect the health and safety of all involved”. US president Donald Trump has the coronavirus, and was released from hospital earlier this week.
  • The first debate was seen to be a political disaster. 
  • For more articles, go to

US President Donald Trump says he will not be taking part in a virtual second presidential debate, CNN reported.

The US Commission on Presidential Debates announced on Thursday that to “protect the health and safety of all involved,” the commission said in a statement, “the second presidential debate will take the form of a town meeting, in which the candidates would participate from separate remote locations.” The debate was scheduled for next week Thursday.

"I am not going to do a virtual debate," Trump said on Fox Business. "I am not going to waste my time on a virtual debate."

Trump, who first announced he tested positive for the disease on 2 October, was hospitalised over the weekend for treatment and monitoring, and returned to the White House on Monday evening. 

The first debate between Trump and Democratic nominee Joe Biden was widely seen as a disaster, particularly for the US president.

Trump spent the vast majority of the night lobbing personal attacks at Biden, while the moderator Chris Wallace begged Trump to stop interrupting Biden, without much success.

Trump made false claims on his Covid-19 response and continued to push the erroneous notion Biden is a socialist, while Biden called the sitting president a racist to his face. Trump also hesitated to explicitly condemn white supremacist groups when given the opportunity. 

France's Le Monde described it as "worrying for American democracy". The Guardian in the UK portrayed the debate as "a national humiliation".

Der Spiegel in Germany used the term "a TV duel like a car accident."

"Never had American politics sunk so low," Italy's La Repubblica said in its debate dispatch.

"The US embarrassed itself before the world for 100 minutes," The Times of India wrote.

Receive a daily update on your cellphone with all our latest news: click here.

Get the best of our site emailed to you daily: click here.

Also from Business Insider South Africa:

  • Emirates flights to SA are definitely on again, as air crew get a semi official pass on tests
  • Why Uber is asking some South Africans for a selfie to prove they're wearing a mask
  • Insurer forced to pay for stolen cellphone - after arguing that it was left 'unguarded'
  • Three friends launched a kasi craft beer – just before lockdown made it illegal to sell