Nolte: Joe Biden and Chris Wallace Started It by Interrupting Trump Numerous Times First

CLEVELAND, OHIO - SEPTEMBER 29: U.S. President Donald Trump and Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden participate in the first presidential debate moderated by Fox News anchor Chris Wallace (C) at the Health Education Campus of Case Western Reserve University on September 29, 2020 in Cleveland, Ohio. This is the first …
Scott Olson/Getty Images

It was Joe Biden and Chris Wallace who set the tone for the first presidential debate – who deliberately rode the debate off the rails – because it was Joe Biden and Chris Wallace who interrupted Trump a handful of times before the president decided, If that’s how you want to play the game, let’s play the game.

You can watch the full debate below, and what you will see is a civil debate until Joe Biden and Chris Wallace decided it was okay to start  interrupting the president.

Watch for yourself. Take you just a few minutes.

As you can see, it went like this…

Trump answered the first debate question about the Supreme Court without interruption.

Biden answered the first debate question about the Supreme Court without interruption.

Then Trump started responding to Biden’s answer, and that’s when Wallace and Biden began cutting him off and interrupting…

Here’s the transcript. This is after both candidates have answered the first question without interrupting each other. Now it is Trump’s turn for a rebuttal and this is exactly how it happened:

DONALD TRUMP: There aren’t a hundred million people with pre-existing conditions. As far as a say is concerned, the people already had their say. Okay, Justice Ginsburg said very powerfully, very strongly, at some point 10 years ago or so, she said a President and the Senate is elected for a period of time, but a President is elected for four years. We’re not elected for three years. I’m not elected for three years. So we have the Senate, we have a President–

JOE BIDEN INTERRUPTION #1: He’s elected to the next election.

DONALD TRUMP: During that period of time, during that period of time, we have an opening. I’m not elected for three years. I’m elected for four years and a hundred million people–

JOE BIDEN INTERRUPTION #2: Merrick Garland started–

DONALD TRUMP: Joe, the hundred million people is totally wrong. I don’t know where you got that number. The bigger problem that you have is that you’re going to extinguish 180 million people with their private health care, that–

JOE BIDEN INTERRUPTION #3: That’s simply not true.

DONALD TRUMP: Well, you’re certainly going to socialist. You’re going to socialist medicine-

And this is where — if you can believe it! — the moderator, Chris Wallace, jumped in to interrupt the president…

Look closely at what Wallace does… Trump is making a point about how Democrats want to take away everyone’s private insurance, and Wallace not only jumps in to shut the president up, he then hands the discussion over to Biden.

I’m deliberately repeating the last line in the excerpt above so you can see that this is exactly how the debate flowed:

DONALD TRUMP: Well, you’re certainly going to socialist. You’re going to socialist medicine-

CHRIS WALLACE INTERRUPTION #1: Gentlemen, we’re now into open discussion.

JOE BIDEN: Open discussion.

CHRIS WALLACE: Open discussion, yes, I agree. Go ahead, Vice President.

JOE BIDEN: Number one, he knows what I proposed. What I proposed is that we expand Obamacare and we increase it. We do not wipe any. And one of the big debates we had with 23 of my colleagues trying to win the nomination that I won, were saying that Biden wanted to allow people to have private insurance still. They can. They do. They will under my proposal.

DONALD TRUMP: That’s not what you’ve said and it’s not what your party is saying.

At this point — and keep in mind this is the open discussion part of the debate — after Biden had his say, Trump jumped in and Biden became outright obnoxious and  started interrupting Trump constantly… Again, I am not breaking up the transcript…

DONALD TRUMP: That’s not what you’ve said, and it’s not what your party is saying.

JOE BIDEN INTERRUPTION #4: That is simply a lie.

DONALD TRUMP: Your party doesn’t say it. Your party wants to go socialist medicine and socialist healthcare.

JOE BIDEN INTERRUPTION #5: The party is me. Right now, I am the Democratic Party.

DONALD TRUMP: And they’re going to dominate you, Joe. You know that.

JOE BIDEN INTERRUPTION #6: I am the Democratic Party right now.

DONALD TRUMP INTERRUPTION #1: Not according to Harris.

And then, at this point, Trump again sat back and allowed Biden to have his say… And after Trump allows Biden to have his say, as soon as Trump starts to make his own point, Biden starts interrupting again:

JOE BIDEN: The platform of the Democratic Party is what I, in fact, approved of, what I approved of. Now, here’s the deal. The deal is that it’s going to wipe out pre-existing conditions. And, by the way, the 200,000 people that have died on his watch, how many of those have survived? Well, there’s seven million people that contracted COVID. What does it mean for them going forward if you strike down the Affordable Care Act?

DONALD TRUMP: Joe, you’ve had 308,000 military people dying because you couldn’t provide them proper healthcare in the military. So don’t tell me about this.

JOE BIDEN INTERRUPTION #7: I’m happy to talk about this.

At this point, Trump gets double teamed by both Biden and Wallace.

Trump begins speaking and on top of Biden interrupting, Wallace again starts badgering and interrupting the president to shut down a valid line of attack:

JOE BIDEN: I’m happy to talk about this.

DONALD TRUMP: And if you were here–

JOE BIDEN INTERRUPTION #8: [indecipherable]

DONALD TRUMP: …it wouldn’t be 200, it would be two million people, because you were very late on the draw–

JOE BIDEN INTERRUPTION #9: [indecipherable]

DONALD TRUMP: You didn’t want me to ban China, which was heavily infected. You didn’t want me to ban Europe–

CHRIS WALLACE INTERRUPTION #2: All right, gentlemen, Mr. President.

DONALD TRUMP: You would have been much later, Joe, much later–

CHRIS WALLACE INTERRUPTION #3: Mr. President, Mr. President, Mr. President.

And after all that, Wallace scolded Trump for interrupting about 15 minutes later:

CHRIS WALLACE: Well, frankly, you’ve been doing more interrupting than he has.

DONALD  TRUMP: Well, that’s alright, but he does plenty.

CHRIS WALLACE: Well, sir, less than-

DONALD TRUMP: He does plenty.

CHRIS WALLACE: No, less than you have.

So it was not only Biden who set the tone that it was okay to interrupt and heckle, it was also Wallace who interrupted Trump on three occasions, just as he was making valid points about the Democrat Party’s affection for stripping all of us of our private health insurance, the VA scandal, and how Biden’s affection for open borders and his son Hunter’s sponsors in China would have made the coronavirus exponentially worse.

Once that tone was set, Trump simply chose to play along.

What’s more, as I pointed out in my earlier review of the debate (which I believe Trump won), interrupting, heckling, and yelling that his opponent is lying is an old Biden trick. He did it to Paul Ryan in 2012 during their vice presidential debate.

Anyone who watches the first ten minutes of last night’s debate, and again, it’s all right here, will see that Trump’s tone was respectful and patient right up until Biden and Wallace decided to interrupt and silence the president.

Follow John Nolte on Twitter @NolteNC. Follow his Facebook Page here.


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