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The debate of candidates for the vice-presidency of the United States was called the most important in 40 years: what was discussed

In the city of Salt Lake City, Utah, the first and only debate during the election race was held between the candidates for the post of US Vice President Kamala Harris and Mike Pence, writes Air force.

Photo: video screenshot

Usually, the discussion between the "second numbers" of the election campaign does not attract much attention, but this time political scientists in Washington called this event "the most important in US history over the past 40 years."

The reason was the age of the presidential contenders - by the time of his inauguration in January next year, Joe Biden will be 78 years old, Donald Trump - 74. The current head of the White House is already sick with COVID-19, and his opponent had serious health problems back in the 1980s ...

According to the 25th amendment to the US Constitution, if the president for some reason cannot fulfill his duties, then the power passes to the vice president of the country.

In the context of the coronavirus pandemic, the likelihood that 55-year-old Kamala Harris and 61-year-old Mike Pence can take the presidency in Washington is considered quite real.

Viral preparations

At the insistence of Harris' campaign headquarters, two Plexiglas screens separated the applicants on stage, and the debaters themselves were at a distance of almost four meters from each other. Pence's headquarters initially tried to object to this measure, but then agreed to the proposed terms.

On Wednesday, October 7, it became known that 34 employees of the White House, including senior advisers to the President of the United States and security personnel, passed positive tests for coronavirus. Six of the seven top generals on the Joint Chiefs of Staff were forced to quarantine.

Senator Harris called the situation with the pandemic in the United States "the largest failure that any presidential administration has had in the history of our country."

She recalled that during the epidemic, 210 Americans died, more than 000 million people were infected, and more than 7 million people were forced to apply for unemployment benefits. Responsibility for this, in her opinion, should be assumed by the Trump administration.

“On January 28, the vice president and president were briefed about the danger of a pandemic,” she said. “They knew about it, but they preferred to hide it. The President called the epidemic rubbish. They tried to minimize the danger. "

In response, Mike Pence, who heads the White House working group on the fight against the epidemic, said that the plan to fight the disease proposed by Joe Biden "is very similar to plagiarism," and promised that an effective vaccine would appear in the United States next year.

“If Donald Trump tells us, they say, use this vaccine, then I do not believe it,” retorted Kamala Harris, adding that she and Joe Biden prefer to follow the advice of experts, not officials.

In turn, Mike Pence did not comment on the version that the cause of the COVID-19 disease of the President of the United States and numerous employees of his administration is participation in the ceremony for nominating a candidate for the post of Supreme Court Justice Amy Connie Barrett. The event took place in the Rose Garden of the White House, and, as noted by the American media, almost none of the participants were wearing a mask.

“There is too much speculation about this,” explained Michael Pence. “My wife and I considered it an honor to be there. Many participants passed tests for coronavirus, and the event itself was held outdoors - this is exactly what scientists constantly advise. President Trump and I believe that Americans can make their own health decisions. ”

On the subject: Coronavirus, taxes and two winners: how the first presidential debate went

War with China?

Both contenders chose not to answer the debate moderator's question about whether they see China as a "competitor, rival, or adversary." Instead, Harris blamed the Trump administration for unleashing a trade war with Beijing, which she said has already cost the US “300 jobs”.

All this, according to the senator, was just one of the episodes of Trump's “failed economic policy”.

Mike Pence echoed the statements of the incumbent head of the White House, who repeatedly reminded of the major economic victories of his administration, and noted that the Democratic candidate Joe Biden had already promised after his election victory to immediately raise taxes for all Americans.

“Not for working Americans and not for the middle class,” Kamala Harris hastened to clarify.

Terrorism and military

During the debate, Mike Pence recalled that among the guests he invited were the parents of Kayla Mueller, who worked in one of the humanitarian organizations and was killed by Islamic State militants in Syria in 2015.

On Wednesday, October 7, the US Department of Justice announced that two gunmen involved in the murder of the Americans had been extradited to the United States and are awaiting trial.

“The truth is that when Joe Biden was vice president, he had the opportunity to save Cayla Mueller,” Pence said, recalling that the Obama administration then tried to conduct an unsuccessful operation to save Americans in Syria, but then refused to further attempts.

Senator Harris responded by saying that it was President Obama who had made the decision to carry out an operation to destroy the leader of the al-Qaeda terrorist organization Osama bin Laden, and said that, according to the publications of the leading American media, President Trump has repeatedly spoken about the military, including killed and missing in the course of military clashes, as "losers and suckers."

"This is typical of Donald Trump," she said. "He only thinks about his own personal interests."

The US President himself has repeatedly denied such accusations. Mike Pence hastened to refute them, recalling that his son, with the rank of captain, serves in the US Marine Corps.

“The accusations against Donald Trump ... are absurd,” he said. "Donald Trump not only respects but also worships (the military)."

Riots and pogroms

The US Vice President saw fit to recall that the events of the past summer, when a wave of protests against police violence swept across the largest US cities, once again demonstrated that the Trump administration is "an administration of law and order."

“We support law enforcement,” Pence said. "But we don't have to choose between supporting the police or supporting our African American or other minority neighbors."

Who will Trump transfer power to?

The US vice president declined to answer the question of whether Trump would voluntarily surrender if he lost the election. The head of the White House himself has invariably avoided answering this question over the past six months.

“We will see how the situation develops,” Trump said during a debate with Joe Biden last week.

“If the elections are free and fair, if we are confident in them, then I believe with all my heart that President Trump will be re-elected for another four years,” Mike Pence explained vaguely.

On the subject: What are the 'October surprises' and how they affect the outcome of the US elections

Body language as a sign of conflict

Several times during the debate, Harris paused, looked at Pence and told him to stop speaking in her place. USA Today.

"Mr. Vice President, I am speaking," Harris said emphatically as they discussed the coronavirus pandemic. - I say."

These moments have become some of the biggest clashes between candidates, shown through their body language, including rolling eyes, shaking their heads and sly smiles.

At one point as the candidates were discussing the Supreme Court, Pence looked directly at Harris, turned to face her, and repeatedly asked if the Biden administration would add additional judges to the Supreme Court.

Harris smiled, flapped her hair, and placed her hands under her chin as Pence pointed out that Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden had dodged an answer. When he finished, Pence looked at Harris and smiled slyly.

In another phase of the debate, Harris turned to Trump, who dodged a call to condemn white supremacists in the first presidential debate. She nodded and waved her hands to underline Trump's words to the Proud Boys, a far-right group, that they should "step back and stand aside."

During his remarks, describing Trump's controversial comments over the years about white supremacy, Pence repeatedly shook his head and took notes. At one point, he muttered: "Not true."

Harris looked Pence in the eyes through the two sheets of plexiglass separating them and said, "This is part of Donald Trump's pattern." Pence raised his eyebrows and continued to listen. When Harris finished, Pence smiled and said that the president had repeatedly denounced such groups.

Fly and Twitter

According to many American TV viewers, the main character of the last debate was an ordinary fly, which perched on Vice President Pence's hair in the midst of the discussion.

The fly sat quietly in place for at least two minutes, and the vice president himself did not even try to drive the insect away.

“Everyone envies me because I had the best place in the debate this evening,” said a fly with the hashtag @MikePenceFly, immediately created by an unknown Twitter viewer.

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Miscellanea In the U.S. дебаты Vice President of the United States election 2020
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