With former Vice President Joe Biden as the presumptive Democratic nominee, thanks in part earlier than expected due to the Coronavirus, it appears as though the top-line of the ticket for both parties is set for this November. For the moment, it seems that President Trump will retain Vice President Mike Pence as his running mate, and Joe Biden continues to mull his options carefully for a much-anticipated VP selection.
The developing general election race now sets up the latter phases of the campaign including both major party conventions in August, followed by a series of presidential debates starting in late September. Some are already asking whether the Coronavirus pandemic could affect the presidential debates, perhaps by eliminating the audience in the room or causing a change in venue, but those questions remain to be answered.
As it stands now, the first presidential debate between Joe Biden and Donald Trump will take place on Thursday, September 29, 2020. The first debate will be held at the University of Notre Dame, in Indiana. The university, which has never previously hosted a presidential debate, has set up a website to inform students and interested parties about how tickets will be doled out and provide other pertinent information.
Here is the complete presidential debate schedule. After the first debate in late-September, October will become the most volatile campaign month as Joe Biden and Donald Trump will debate two more times, with a Vice Presidential debate kicking off the month.
First Presidential Debate
Tuesday, September 29, 2020
University of Notre Dame, Notre Dame, IN
Vice Presidential Debate
Wednesday, October 7, 2020
The University of Utah, Salt Lake City, UT
Second Presidential Debate
Thursday, October 15, 2020
University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI
Third Presidential Debate
Thursday, October 22, 2020
Belmont University, Nashville, TN
Time – The debates will air from 9 pm to 10:30 pm ET (8 pm – 9:30 pm CT, 7 pm – 8:30 pm MT, 6 pm – 7:30 pm PT)
Tickets – Tickets for each debate are controlled by the hosting university and are extremely limited since the debates are primarily produced for television. The majority of tickets are distributed to host university students and faculty through a lottery system. See this page for all available ticketing details.
Live Streaming – All the major news networks will offer a free live stream as will YouTube and Twitter. We will carry the live stream for each debate on Election Central.
TV Channels – Each debate will be broadcast live on C-SPAN, ABC, CBS, FOX, and NBC, as well as all cable news channels including CNN, Fox News, Fox Business Network, and MSNBC among others.
Could things change?
All of this, of course, assumes that Joe Biden will ultimately become the 2020 Democratic Nominee. At the moment, there’s no reason to believe he won’t as it appears he will be cruising to the necessary number of delegates to clinch the nomination on the first round of voting at the Democratic convention in August.
There’s also the chance that for some reason the debates are postponed or the format changed in relation to the COVID-19 outbreak. No official announcements have been made regarding possible changes with the first debate still months away.
Bookmark and follow the 2020 Debate Schedule page for all the latest details including venue information, how to watch, debate start times, and live stream links.