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How to watch the first presidential debate between Donald Trump and Joe Biden

The presidential debate Tuesday will be hosted in Cleveland at Case Western Reserve University and the Cleveland Clinic.

Cleveland Prepares For First Presidential Debate
Workers prepare the stage for the first presidential debate between U.S. President Donald Trump and Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden in Cleveland on Tuesday.
Getty Images

WASHINGTON — The highly anticipated first match-up between Democratic nominee Joe Biden and incumbent Republican President Donald Trump is finally here.

The presidential debate Tuesday will be hosted in Cleveland at Case Western Reserve University and the Cleveland Clinic. It will air from 8 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. CST, and will be moderated by “Fox News Sunday” anchor Chris Wallace.

The debate will air on most major networks and cable news channels, including Fox News, CNN, ABC, CBS, NBC, MSNBC, PBS and C-SPAN. Viewers can also catch it live on YouTube from various outlets, listen or watch on NPR, or watch live with Hulu, XUMO TV, Fubo, Sling, or some other streaming services.

The first debate comes in the middle of the tumultuous final weeks before Election Day which includes the country surpassing 200,000 deaths from the coronavirus pandemic, a pending battle over confirming a Supreme Court justice and a nationwide reckoning over racial injustice and policing.

On Saturday, Trump named Amy Coney Barrett as his nominee for the Supreme Court, a week after the death of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. If confirmed, Barrett would become Trump’s third justice on the Supreme Court and could consolidate conservative control of the court for decades.

On Sunday, the New York Times reported Trump paid only $750 in personal federal income taxes in 2016 and 2017, and he paid no income taxes at all in 10 of the previous 15 years. The topic is likely to come up Tuesday.

The debate will include six 15-minute segments “dedicated to topics announced in advance in order to encourage deep discussion of the leading issues facing the country,” according to the Commission on Presidential Debates.

Those topics are:

  • Trump’s and Biden’s records
  • The Supreme Court
  • COVID-19
  • The economy
  • Race and violence in U.S. cities
  • The integrity of the election

The sixth topic comes as Trump recently declined to commit to a peaceful transfer of power if he loses the Nov. 3 election, and has repeated his criticisms of mail-in voting, a practice that he has claimed without evidence will lead to widespread fraud.

Though the race has tightened, Trump remains behind in several battleground states, according to recent polls. A Washington Post-ABC News poll last week found Biden and his running mate, Sen. Kamala Harris, leading Trump and Vice President Mike Pence 53%-43% among registered voters, virtually unmoved from over the summer.

Two more presidential debates are scheduled for Oct. 15 in Miami and Oct. 22 in Nashville, Tennessee. The only debate for vice presidential candidates Pence and Harris is Oct. 7 in Salt Lake City.