Nobody won, the American people lost



President Donald Trump representing the Republican party and Joe Biden representing the Democratic party went head to head in the first of three presidential debates. It was a very tense and fiery hour and a half long debate with many controversial statements and topics.

Sam McGrath, Business Manager

After an exhausting hour and a half, the first of three presidential debates led to a very disappointing outcome-nobody won. Shouting matches between the two debaters and the moderator led to a bipartisan agreement: this was one of the worst debates in American history. 

On the Republican side, President Donald Trump went on the attack, mainly referencing his previous three years to highlight his successes. The Democratic nominee and former Vice President Joe Biden reminded the American people of his time as Vice President, but also brought up some of his new policies. Overall, both candidate’s policies were hard to understand due to many interruptions from both parties. 

In a night full of controversy, the most popular controversial statement was when Trump told the Proud Boys to “stand back and stand by.” The Proud Boys themselves have stated to not be linked to any white supremacists, but other experts have warned of ties to white supremacy. Trump is also under fire for his taxes and his constant barrage of attacks on Biden’s sons, Hunter and Beau Biden.  

However, there was just as much controversy on the left as there was on the right. Joe Biden stated that “Antifa is an idea not an organization.” His unwillingness to clarify he will not pack the court and eliminate the filibuster has gained a lot of attention on right wing sources like Fox News.

Although this debate frustrated many Americans, they are still very important to the American people because they usually outline where the candidates stand on certain topics. 

Joe Youngbauer, an AP Government teacher at PV, explained how this debate was a tough one for the American people because the purpose of a debate was lost. “Many Americans were turned off quickly to this presidential debate due to the constant interruptions and disregard for the actual prompts being asked by the moderator,” commented Youngbauer.

Senior Allison Suen strongly believes that US citizens should watch the debates. “If anyone was unsure of which way they wanted to vote for the election they were left more confused than before because no real substance was really discussed,” said Suen. Like many other teenagers, she became frustrated and was left unsatisfied. 

Even though there was a bipartisan agreement that this debate was not productive, Suen went on to say that this debate highlighted the personalities of both candidates. After seeing the two candidates in the spotlight, it may help young adults in making their decisions. 

Youngbauer believes debates are extremely important-especially for teenagers. Debates allow them to see the candidates for who they are without any bias from the news. “Young or old, engagement in the electoral process requires engagement from the electorate and watching debates is a crucial part of that process,” he said. Youngbauer emphasized the importance of people of all ages taking part in the election process.

Additionally, many invested voters advise people of all ages to take part in politics by watching debates from different elections on federal, state and local scales. “I think that Americans in general and maybe more specifically young people put so much emphasis on presidential elections in America. I would encourage young people to ‘try-out’ more than just presidential politics,” explained Youngbauer. “These elections are just as, if not more important than our presidential race.”

This first debate was a very controversial one where the American people ultimately lost. Unfortunately, the audience was not able to obtain stances on the policies and goals of each candidate. However, with two more debates left before the election and several local debates as well, there may still be hope for an informative debate in the near future.