Thursday’s presidential debate is going to be incredibly important

June 24 – President Joe Biden and former president Donald Trump are set for their first debate for the 2024 election in November. 

It will be at 9 p.m. on CNN on Thursday. 

Pat Ryan of NewsTalk 103.7FM pointed out, “Donald Trump went into Philadelphia and took it over. Between grabbing a cheesesteak, seeing some kid who looked like Donald Trump as well, autographing a $20 bill and then just commanding an audience in the bluest of blues. It doesn’t look like there were too many problems, if any, with this stop in Philadelphia. I like his strategy going right into the throat here, while the president takes seven days to prepare for 90 minutes of the debate. We will carry the debate. It looks like there’s been some negotiation between Fox News Radio and CNN, so we’ve got the debate for you on Thursday night coverage here on NewsTalk 103.7, FM. But why do you take seven days in order to prepare for this? All you have to do is talk about your record, on the border, on inflation, on energy, on the world stage. Maybe it takes seven days to kind of re-educate Joe as to what everybody around him has been doing, and him going, ‘I did what?’”

Attorney Clint Barkdoll said, “This is going to be huge. Arguably, maybe the most important presidential debate in recent history. It’s also the earliest presidential debate as far as being at the end of June in history. Going into last week, there was a lot of back and forth among these networks. CNN said they were just going to air this exclusively. No one else would be able to simulcast it. Through some negotiation, now, all of the networks are going to carry it. They do have to keep the CNN bug, the logo must be on the screen, so if you watch this on Fox or CBS, you’re still going to see that CNN logo.”

After a coin toss, Biden was able to select which podium he wanted – he chose the one on the right. 

Barkdoll said, “Trump then chose to give the final closing statement. There will be no opening statements, only closing statements. Remember, there’s no audience, and these moderators are going to be able to mute the mic of the person who’s not talking, which is also going to create a very strange dynamic, because you think about the debates, even in 2020, these two would often talk over and interrupt each other. That’s now going to be gone. I don’t know how far away the moderators are going to be from the candidates, but let’s say we’re all in the studio, and you mute my mic, but I’m still talking. I think you pick some of that up, and it’s going to be interesting on TV and radio Thursday, even though the mic is muted, will the cameras and the other live mics still pick up what that person might be saying on the muted mic? So there’s all of that going on that’s really fascinating. The seven, eight, nine day debate prep is just unprecedented.”

Biden is apparently at Camp David doing a whole lot of debate preparation. 

Barkdoll said he’s “with a dozen or so advisors doing mock debates, resting as well, and all sorts of debate prep. Trump, you saw this weekend, he was there at Temple University. He said, this is my debate prep, doing these rallies, being out among the people. So this is going to be a really interesting night. It’s going to be 90 minutes, starting at nine o’clock, and CNN is doing two commercial breaks. One other point on that, during the commercial breaks, neither candidate is allowed to interact with anybody on their campaign team, so when that studio goes dark, they just have to keep standing there at the podiums while the commercials run.”

One of the big questions about Trump is who will be his VP? 

Barkdoll said, “A deep dive by NBC News overnight, they interviewed about a dozen people in Trump’s orbit. They’re saying that he’s down to North Dakota Governor Doug Burgum or JD Vance, the Ohio senator. Those are the two people emerging as the likely vice presidential pick by Trump. Marco Rubio may still be in the mix, but it’s looking like Burgum or Vance. They’re also reporting that Trump’s team may time the announcement for around July 11. That’s the day he’s to be sentenced in that New York criminal case. The thinking is, if he rolls out the VP pick that day, that will, of course, dominate the news and eclipse anything related to that New York case. Burgum was on the Sunday circuit yesterday. It seems like Trump, personally, is very fond of Doug Burgum. They get along well, Burgum is a billionaire businessman, too. They have a lot of things in common, and that’s a name six months ago no one would have even had on their list, but we’ll see in the next couple weeks what Trump does.”

Interestingly, Trump also posted last night on Truth Social that he personally invited the president of the teamsters union to speak at the Republican National Convention and the teamsters union president has accepted. 

Barkdoll said, “He’s going to be given a very prominent speaking role at the convention coming up this summer from Milwaukee. Again, this is unprecedented. Trump is clearly lobbying to get that team’s endorsement. Trump also made some statements on Truth Social backing and supporting initiatives for their workers. So really interesting.”

Also interesting, the former medical director and White House Doctor Ronny Jackson said yesterday on a morning show that he penned a letter asking for blood tests for Biden. 

Ryan said Jackson is “citing directly the guy we see all the time on the world stage is not the guy we saw at the State of the Union. There is something to be called into question, and it’s up to you, Mr. President. Why don’t you just submit to that cognitive test which you’d fail miserably, or the blood test?”

Barkdoll said, “There’s a number of people calling for that, and Biden is certainly not going to agree to it. But it’s an interesting question, which Biden do you get Thursday night? Is it State of the Union late night Joe Biden, where it seemed like he was shot out of a cannon that night? Or is it the Joe Biden we so often see on the world stage that just seems like he’s drowsy, he’s having difficulty grasping even what’s going on. Naturally, a lot of doctors are asking questions about that. But going back to the State of the Union and tying that into this week, the reporting at the state union was Biden was resting for four or five days, had nothing on his public schedule, and that seems to be what they’re doing again now this week, for an even longer period. He’s quote unquote resting, prepping for the debate, for about seven days with nothing on his public schedule.”

Michele Jansen of NewsTalk 103.7FM added, “Then that just adds to the suspicion that something’s going on. Why would you need all those days for him to, quote, unquote rest. Could it be you’re trying to get something just right and you worry, because this is different. He’s not just going to be going straight through. This is a question and answer. So it’s a different format. Is that what they’re doing? Testing out how the same things that helped him in the State of the Union then work when he’s being asked questions and having to stop and go, stop and go. I don’t mean to add to uber speculation, it’s just it’s so much uncertainty out there, why wouldn’t you just relieve it? Say, okay, fine. Both of us will take a blood test and get it off the plate. But of course, we know they won’t.”

Barkdoll said, “There could be an argument, he could come out and say, let’s do this, but he won’t. Even the muted microphone piece, all these rules that were laying out, these were Biden’s demands. No audience, muted mics, etc. A lot of people are now pointing out that muted mic might not work in Biden’s favor, because going back to the 2020 debates, you’ll remember how Trump was just constantly interrupting Biden. At one point, Biden said, shut up, man. A lot of observers thought Biden actually won that debate. Well, if that’s all now removed, that could actually work to Trump’s benefit, but this will be the first debate we’ve ever seen where they’re using this technique, where they just mute the mic of the other candidate.”