Late on Tuesday night, after the first presidential debate between President Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden was over, Biden’s deputy campaign manager avowed that Biden would commit to the two next presidential debates, scheduled for October 15 and October 22. According to The Hill, Kate Bedingfield quashed any ideas that Biden would skip the next two debates, saying, “I don’t know how many different ways we can say it. Yes, we are going to do the debates. I would imagine there will be some additional conversations [with the Commission on Presidential Debates]. But yeah, we are committing to attending the debates.”
Senator Chris Coons (D-DL), who serves as a Biden surrogate, had informed Politico that he was unsure whether further debates should be held, iterating:
It was very hard to follow what was being said, and President Trump showed not just disrespect to the moderator, but to the American people who tuned in trying to figure out what his plans are. The point of the debate is for the American people to make a decision, informed by hearing from the two candidates on what’s your record, what are your values? Joe Biden came prepared to respect the American people. Donald Trump did not.
Simon Rosenberg, a former senior consultant for the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, told Politico:
Of course, Biden and Harris should keep debating. But they should work to make sure Trump can’t repeat his performance tonight. Moderators should have the ability to cut off his mic and split screens should be limited. Let them talk to the American people without the other facial expressions and interruptions registering.
Bedingfield’s answer to reporters as to whether Biden would take part in further debates should be taken seriously; her relationship with them is rather chummy. In mid-August, after the announcement was made that Biden had selected Senator Kamala Harris (D-CA) as his running mate, Bedingfield issued a tweet offering reporters covering the Biden campaign a “Virtual high five,” adding, “We did it, guys.”
Bedingfield wrote, “Shoutout to all of our beat reporters for surviving some of the most painful news cycles of any presidential campaign. Virtual high five to all of you. We did it, guys.”
In late July, Bedingfield, apparently confident that the Trump campaign’s messages would not “work this go-round,” authored a memo in which she exhibited her confidence Trump attacking Biden would not work:
Time after time, Trump’s advisers boast that they are certain the upteenth reboot of their anti-Biden messaging will work this go-round, only to quickly thereafter find themselves on defense, having elevated issues on which Donald Trump’s record is extremely vulnerable. Trump doesn’t have an argument for why he deserves to be reelected, so pouring money into ineffective attacks against his opponent is his only option. In terms Donald Trump understands, it’s the only club he’s got in his bag.