Cleveland returns to national limelight tonight as the host of the first presidential debate of the 2020 election.
Cleveland intervened when the University of Notre Dame stepped down as host due to complications created by the coronavirus pandemic when hosting the event on its campus.
President Donald Trump and Democratic Party candidate Joe Biden will debate at the Sheila and Eric Samson Pavilion located at the Cleveland Clinic and the Case Western Reserve University Health Education Campus.
The debate will start at 9 p.m. and last 90 minutes.
The city of Cleveland is bracing for the debate that takes place as divisions between the Americans create tension for supporters of the two candidates. Protesters are expected to rally in Cleveland. The National Guard has been called in to assist the Cleveland Police. The coronavirus pandemic also adds a layer of security and preparedness to the debate, as precautions have been taken to prevent the spread of the virus. Media covering the event were required to take a COVID-19 test in order to be admitted to the debate.
The debate in Cleveland will be the first of the 2020 election and will bring the two candidates face to face on topics ranging from COVID-19 to election integrity. Debate moderator Chris Wallace of Fox News shortlisted the topics.
Ohio typically enjoys status during election cycles and while the state opted for Donald Trump in 2016, recent polls indicate the race is very close in Buckeye state and potentially up for grabs.
A majority of voters say they have already decided who they will vote for in the election, but a remaining small percentage of undecided voters say the debates will help them choose a candidate. The debate is expected to attract a huge audience. Early voting will begin in Ohio on October 6, and some states have already started voting. Election day is November 3.
Ideastream will cover the debate both inside and outside the room. Be sure to tune in for a special 8 p.m. pre-debate on WCPN followed by coverage of the debate.
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Ideastream election coverage