DONALD Trump and Joe Biden took to the stage in Tennessee for the final presidential debate.
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Here’s what happened in the final debateCredit: AP:Associated Press
What happened in the final presidential debate?
The final presidential debate was far calmer and more organised than the previous discussion, which pundits branded a “mess”.
The presidential hopeful and the POTUS discussed six topics, from coronavirus to climate change, spending 15 minutes on each.
Each candidate spoke for two minutes uninterrupted before entering into open debate with measures in place to avoid interruptions and “chaos” like the previous time.
Moderator Kristen Welker introduced the pair, and opened with questions on coronavirus.
Quizzing the POTUS first she addressed how scores of Americans had died from the virus since he last took to the debate stage just three weeks prior.
Trump pointed out America’s mortality rate is down 85 per cent, as well drops in excess deaths.
He lamented how the “greatest economy in the world had been closed up because of a plague from China,” adding following his own Covid-19 treatment he was now immune to the virus “whether that be for four months or a lifetime”.
Democratic hopeful Biden cuttingly insisted that instead of “learning to live with the virus” as the President suggested, people were “learning to die with the virus”.
He said anyone responsible for the amount of Covid-19 deaths in the US “should not be president”.
But Trump insisted there could be a “vaccine within weeks.”
The President said coronavirus deaths had began to dipCredit: Getty Images – Getty
On measures of national security, Biden faltered as he rushed to insist he had “never received a penny” of money from abroad following accusations about his son, Hunter.
The President goaded the ex-VP suggesting he was referenced as having received a “cut” from dodgy Ukranian businessmen.
But the Democrat fired back at Trump to release his tax returns, telling him: “What are you hiding?”
The president insisted the documents would be released soon, adding he “pre-paid millions in tax”.
Trump was much calmer this time around after polling showed his previous more aggressive performance reflected badly with the suburban women he needs to win over.
Biden was able to speak at greater length this time around, something the Trump campaign were keen to allow in the hope the notoriously inarticulate Democrat would stumble over his words and policy plans.
But Biden was well prepared as the pair moved through the next few issues on families, race and climate change.
In one of the biggest statements of the evening, Biden said he plans to transition away from the “polluting” oil industry and replace it with green energy – prompting a lambasting from Trump who accused him of wrecking the economy.
On race, the POTUS told the crowd he was the “least racist person in the room,” and rolled out his well-used line about doing more for black Americans than any other president – with Abraham Lincoln the only possible excpetion.
Meanwhile, Biden claimed America was an “institutionally racist country”.
The President rounded off the debate telling voters: “We have to make this country as successful as it was before the plague came from China.”
Joe Biden was at pains to insist he had received no money from abroadCredit: Reuters
Where did the debate take place?
The debate took place at Belmont University in Nashville, Tennessee.
It’s the second time the university hosted a presidential debate, hosting McCain and Obama in 2008.
The college also served as backup in 2016.
Convention and Visitors Corp President Butch Spyridon told Fox17 the venue boasts just the right combination of security and financial commitment to ensure the debate will run smoothly.
He said: “It is a statement about how Belmont has grown. How Nashville has grown – the capabilities of the city and the desirability we have.”
Kristen Welker moderated the debateCredit: EPA
Who was the moderator?
Kristen Welker moderated the final debate.
Ms Welker is the NBC News White House correspondent and co-anchor of Weekend Today.
Her “hard-hitting political reporting appears across all NBC News and MSNBC platforms, including NBC Nightly News with Lester Holt, TODAY, Meet the Press and NBCNews.com,” according to her online bio.
She began covering the White House for NBC News in December 2011.
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