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Trump and Biden to meet Tuesday night in first Presidential debate

Published: Sep. 29, 2020 at 7:38 PM EDT
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ROANOKE, Va. (WDBJ) - When President Donald Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden share the stage in Cleveland Tuesday night, the party faithful will be watching.

“I believe that President Trump is ready, willing, able, equipped, understands the issues, has a vision for the future,” said Virginia GOP Chairman Rich Anderson.

Anderson told WDBJ7 he hopes the President will focus on issues, including jobs and the economy.

Virginia Democrats who are making the future of the Affordable Care Act a central issue, hope Joe Biden will make a personal connection.

You’ll hear the empathy from Joe Biden," said Biden supporter Anne Shoup, “and I will be really heartened to hear if he can bring it back to the impact on real people.”

Virginia Tech professor Bob Denton says the exchange has the potential to be an important factor in the race. He said polls can move two to five points following the first debate.

“We know the first debate is the most important of the three and even more so this time, because early voting has started, and by the time of the second debate, maybe half the nation has already voted,” Denton said Tuesday afternoon.

And Roanoke College Professor Harry Wilson says the debate could have the biggest impact in battleground states.

“In Virginia I don’t know that this is going to make a huge difference,” Wilson said, “but it could make a difference in states where the election ends up being really, really close.”

Because this a base election, in which the candidates need to energize their core constituency, it’s possible that both men will be able to claim victory when the debate is over Tuesday night.

Copyright 2020 WDBJ. All rights reserved.

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