The first (and last) Vice Presidential debate of 2020 between current VP Mike Pence and Senator Kamala Harris took place on Wednesday, October 7th, 2020. It was held at the University of Utah in Salt Lake City and moderated by Susan Page of USA Today. There was a limited and “socially-distanced” crowd at Kingsbury Hall and mostly everyone was required to wear a mask. Pence and Harris were distanced about twelve feet apart with gigantic plexiglass partitions between them. The moderator was also a fair distance away but did not have a partition for some reason? Everyone was seated during the debate.
Susan Page was a much better moderator than Chris Wallace but she still exhibited signs of bias. Her job was to keep the debate within time constraints and to prevent Pence and Harris from speaking over each other. According to CNN, Pence and Harris had equal speaking time. Other sources say that Harris had three more minutes of time than Pence. Either way, Page forcefully interrupted Pence to get him to wrap up his statements but she did not do that to Kamala Harris until nearly the end of the debate. Pence often had to disregard the moderator to finish a sentence.
Democrats and uninformed voters, mostly on the left, focused on the a fly that appeared on Mike Pence’s head later in the debate. Was it a funny moment? Sure. But there was certainly much more to focus on in the debate than the fly, or funny looks from Kamala Harris. After all, this is a Vice Presidential debate and one of the people on stage will be next in line to become President from 2021 to 2025. In the case of Kamala Harris, that possibility most certainly could become a quick reality if Joe Biden were to win in November.
The moderator brought the issue of the virus up immediately. Kamala Harris then introduced what she did throughout the debate, which was simply to repeat anti-Trump one-liners that mainstream media like CNN say on a regular basis. She brought up the “Trump only paid $750 in taxes” lie, the “suckers and losers” statement that is widely refuted even by John Bolton who hates Trump, the Charlottesville “good people on both sides” misdirection, and more. Harris appealed to the uneducated leftist voter who believes everything the television tells them.
Pence reminded everyone watching the debate that it was Trump who first called for an end to travel from China back in January, long before March when the outbreak was first recognized in the states. Biden and others on the left called that action “xenophobic” at the time. Pence continued on to say that if not for Trump’s early action, the pandemic would have been much greater.
Harris invoked the name of Bob Woodward and his claim that Trump knew the severity of the virus and that it was airborne, but refused to inform the public because he did not want to cause panic. Pence correctly brought up the fact that Dr. Anthony Fauci said Trump told the American people everything that Fauci told him. Then he drove the proverbial nail in the virus coffin by saying Biden’s plan to combat it “looks a little bit like plagiarism, which is something Joe Biden knows a little bit about.”
Kamala Harris did not come off as “likable” during this debate. She sounded very “corporate America” and not much like a regular person. At one point during the debate, Harris essentially read her LinkedIn profile to list all of her “accomplishments.” There was no section of the debate that even called for that. She often went off the reservation when asked a direct question to repeat the same old tired phrases over and over. Susan Page even called her out on being repetitious when trying to butt in and respond to Pence.
Vice President Pence cornered Kamala Harris on the question of “packing the court.” Democrats have gone on television quite a bit over the past few days and weeks threatening to pack the court if Amy Coney Barrett is pushed through to the Supreme Court before the election. Democrats want to add more justices to the Supreme Court in an effort to overtake the advantage conservatives currently have. Kamala dodged that question with random history lessons about Abraham Lincoln and a race card deflection about Trump not nominating enough black judges.
Kamala Harris told quite a few lies during the debate. Either she was lying or she has done a 180 since the primary when she ran against Joe Biden. Which wouldn’t be surprising because Harris all but called Biden a racist during a primary debate. Harris says that Joe Biden does not want to end fracking, but there is an actual video of him saying that they are going to end fracking and fossil fuels in general. There is also a video of Kamala saying “there is no question that I’m in favor of banning fracking.”
Susan Page introduced the topic of “climate change” and the idea of “wetter” hurricanes which was worded very strangely to say the last. Pence says that climate does change but stopped short of saying that anything manmade is causing said change. The Vice President mentioned forest management in relation to the California fires. Poor management leads to disastrous results. He continued on to say that although we are facing challenges with weather that there are no more hurricanes today than there were 100 years ago. Pence brought up a great point about Kamala Harris supporting “Green New Deal”.
Harris shook her head in the “no” motion as Pence mentioned her support of the Green New Deal as it’s first co-sponsor in the Senate, but the moderator called her on it in the next question. She said Biden would not ban fracking even though he said he would multiple times. Harris then went on to list all of the core tenets in the Green New Deal as her response to climate change without actually calling it the “Green New Deal”.
The subject of jobs came up and Pence hopped right on it. Before the virus, America was breaking economic records left and right. Pence mentioned the manufacturing jobs that Obama said would not return and if they did, you would need a magic wand. Kamala Harris says that the Trump administration has lost the trade war with China and Pence’s response is that Joe Biden never fought it. The Obama/Biden administration was one that cozied up to China.
Race and police brutality get a mention here and it was pretty brutal, in favor of Mike Pence. He brought up the Trump administration’s First Step Act, which reduces prison time for long-term drug offenders, many of whom are in prison due to the Clinton Crime Bill. By the way, Joe Biden wrote that bill and is unapologetic. Breonna Taylor’s case was brought up and Pence said while it’s tragic and unfortunate, I have faith in the system. Essentially – the grand jury returned charges and we should stick with it.
Harris said that the shooting of Breonna Taylor was unjustified and then brought up George Floyd and the knee on his neck. Pence said what happened to Floyd was inexcusable but so are the riots and looting happening all across the country. Harris brought up her own record as California’s Attorney General. Kamala’s record as top-cop might not be what she wants to highlight. Mike Pence illuminated the fact that the black incarceration rate in California significantly rose under Kamala Harris.
The same old question of “accepting the results of the election” was asked by the moderator and Pence answered it perfectly. He said that the left has not accepted the results of the 2016 election yet and we’re into 2020. Through the impeachment, and the Russia collusion hoax, and the spying on the campaign before the election happened, the left refused to accept the results before the results even happened and thereafter.
The final question was from a school-aged girl asking how people are able to get along if everyone fights about politics all of the time on the news. Pence said that the news does not necessarily represent the lives of everyday people. And he also mentioned Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s friendship with Antonin Scalia despite their obvious political differences. Kamala Harris’s response was one of doom and gloom. She confirmed that there are huge social issues with Americans, citing the Charlottesville incident. Her solution to the problems that the young lady sees on the news is to elect Joe Biden.
Overall, the debate was good. Not too much over-talking from either side and a moderator who obviously leans left but was fairer than the so-called “conservative” Chris Wallace. Pence was able to make himself clear and the same for Kamala. Its not quite clear yet if the debate will move the needle in one direction or the other or if people will stay in their neutral corners. Either way, its good to hear directly from the Vice Presidential candidates to get their viewpoint on all things political.
Vice Presidential Debate 2020
Pence, Harris face off in VP debate with diverging views of America – ABC News
Fly landed on Pence’s head during debate for more than two minutes – YouTube
Vice presidential debate: Kamala Harris ducks Pence’s court-packing question | Fox News