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Trump, Biden Clash in Contentious First Debate

President Donald Trump and Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden participate in their first 2020 presidential debate held on the campus of the Cleveland Clinic at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, September 29, 2020. Reuters/Brian Snyder

President Trump and Joe Biden clashed over the Supreme Court, the coronavirus and the economy in a debate marked by interruptions and insults from both candidates Tuesday—with the Republican leader telling his rival that for “47 years you’ve done nothing” and the Democratic challenger calling Mr. Trump “the worst president that America has ever had.”

The two candidates constantly spoke over each other in a number of contentious exchanges, more notable for rancor than policy nuance.

Mr. Trump repeatedly interrupted his rival and questioned Mr. Biden’s accomplishments during nearly 50 years in public life. The president also deflected a question about whether he would condemn white supremacist groups, saying most violence stemming from civil unrest came from the “left wing.”

Mr. Biden, who at one point told the president to “shut up,” found fault in the Republican’s stewardship of the economy and his coronavirus response. Later, he raised his voice to defend his son Hunter after the president criticized his military discharge over drug use.

For roughly 90 minutes from a socially distanced hall in Cleveland, the candidates were vying for a narrow slice of persuadable voters amid a global pandemic, a polarizing fight over the court and fresh revelations about the president’s taxes.

Wall Street Journal, excerpt posted on  SouthFloridaReporter.com, Sept. 30, 2020