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Trump, Biden in final debate spar over foreign election meddling, North Korea talks

Trump, Biden in final debate spar over foreign election meddling, North Korea talks

Washington, Oct 23 (UNI) US President Donald Trump and Democratic challenger Joe Biden during their final debate sparred and traded allegations over the pandemic, foreign election meddling, scandals, North Korea nuclear talks, racism, and climate change, among other issues.
Trump opened the debate defending his record against the pandemic, saying that his administration would announce a vaccine within weeks. Trump also said that Americans are learning to live with COVID-19 and the US needs to open schools. Trump again blamed China for US woes due to the virus.
Biden in response said Trump still has no comprehensive plan to fight COVID-19. The former vice president called Trump's approach "tragic."
Trump reiterated that he wants to open schools and the country while Biden said "we want a safe opening."
On the topic of foreign interference, Biden said Iran and Russia will pay a heavy price for meddling in the US election if he is elected president.
"It's been overwhelmingly clear this election... that Russia has been involved, China has been involved to some degree, and now we learn that Iran is involved," Biden said on Thursday night. "They will pay a price if I'm elected."
Trump accused Biden of being paid by "Russians." Biden responded by saying he never took "a penny" from any foreign source.
The Hunter Biden scandal was also raised. Biden said nothing was unethical about Hunter's business dealings in Ukraine. He said his son never made any money on China.
When the topic moved to North Korea, Trump said there was a possibility of nuclear war and that millions of people would have been dead if not for him. Biden said he would negotiate with Kim Jong Un if North Korea reduced its nuclear capabilities.
"On the condition that [Kim] would agree to drawing down his nuclear capacity," Biden said on Thursday, responding to moderator Kristen Welker’s question under what condition the Democratic candidate would meet with the North Korean leader should he assume presidency.
With respect to healthcare, Trump called for entirely terminating Obamacare and accused Biden of planning to socialise medicine. The former vice president promised to reduce drug prices if he wins the November 3 election.
Trump said Democratic administrations have built cages for migrants while Biden slammed the president for separating families at the border.
When the issue of racism came up, Trump claimed he has done more for the Black community than any other president and boasted about his record on criminal reform. Biden said during the Obama administration they commuted 1,000 prison sentences compared to Trump's 20. The former vice president also said that in total he they got 38,000 people out of federal prison.
The candidates traded more insults over the Russia probe and the Ukraine scandals. Biden claimed the information regarding the Hunter Biden scandal was part of a Russian plan, prompting Trump to say "Russia, Russia, Russia, again."
Regarding climate change, Biden warned that the US cannot handle four more years of Trump rolling back environmental regulations. Biden said after a transition to clean Industry, he would stop giving subsidies to the oil industry.
Their second televised showdown got under way in Nashville, Tennessee on Thursday shortly after 0100 hrs (GMT) on Friday, moderated by NBC News correspondent Kristen Welker. The debate rules have changed, as the moderator will be allowed to cut-off microphones given the candidates interrupted each other repeatedly in the previous debate.
Biden is ahead by an average of 8 per cent nationally in the most recent eleven surveys posted on poll aggregator (RCP). Meanwhile, Trump is behind in polling in 8 of the top 12 battleground states, but nearly all within a typical margin of error, and most have tightened in the past week. Over 47 million early votes have been cast as of Thursday, outpacing 2016 by nearly a factor of eight, with 70 per cent received by mail ahead of the November 3 election.

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