Race to 270: Pence, Harris and a fly take the debate stage, Biden and Trump on the trail


Courtesy of James Bartlett

In what was a wild week in the Race to 270, there was an active several days for both presidential candidates and their running mates.

The first and only vice presidential debate was last week, and was a much less spirited affair than President Donald Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden’s debate the week before, with both vice presidential candidates acting much more reserved and respectful than their running mates.

On Wednesday night, Vice President Mike Pence and Senator Kamala Harris joined each other on the debate stage. The candidates sat 12 feet from each other, with plexiglass shields between them. The debate was moderated by Susan Page, the Washington Bureau Chief for USA Today.

COVID-19 was once again the main topic in the debate.  Pence, who leads the coronavirus task force in the White House, remarked at the debate how he knows “our nation’s gone through a very challenging time this year.” 

When Pence was asked about how Americans should follow COVID-19 guidelines, such as wearing a mask, when the Trump administration often fails to do so, Pence said that decision should lay with the citizens. 

“We’re about freedom and protecting the freedom of the American people,” said Pence.

Harris fired back, stating that “The American people have witnessed the greatest failure of any presidential administration in our history.”

Despite the lack of fireworks at the vice presidential debate, the number-one story of the night flew in out of nowhere. This story was that of a fly that landed on Pence’s hair, which went viral on Twitter instantaneously.

Throughout the week, there was a public dispute between the Trump and Biden campaigns and the Commission On Presidential Debates.

Trump refused to agree to an in a virtual presidential debate throughout the past week and weekend in interviews and via Twitter. Trump said the debate would be “a waste of time” in an interview with Fox Business last Thursday, insisting on an in-person debate between himself and Biden.

Biden and Trump will instead hold individual town hall events on Thursday instead of debating. Biden will be on ABC with George Stephanopoulos in Philadelphia and Trump is in talks with NBC to appear in a town hall in Miami with Savannah Guthrie.

A week after leaving Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, where he was hospitalized and treated for COVID-19, Trump was back on the campaign trail insert day here

Trump oversaw a “Peaceful Protest for Law and Order” at the White House Saturday afternoon.

“First of all, I’m feeling great. I don’t know about you,” Trump said to his crowd of supporters on the White House Lawn Saturday.

 Trump hosted an outdoor rally in Sanford, Fla. on Monday. 

According to The Washington Post, Trump claimed at the Florida rally that he was “immune” to the virus now having previously had the virus, which he has now tested negative for.

The Biden campaign, which announced Tuesday that former President Barack Obama will hit the trail for Biden in the final weeks of the election, had Biden in several states across the country in the past week, including Nevada and Florida.

Biden continues to lead in polls nationally according to the New York Times, opening up a 10 point lead over the Trump campaign.