Trump Says He Is Obligated to Debate Biden Ahead of Election, Regardless of Polls

Katabella Roberts
By Katabella Roberts
February 21, 2024Donald Trump
Trump Says He Is Obligated to Debate Biden Ahead of Election, Regardless of Polls
Former President Donald Trump speaks during a Fox News town hall at the Greenville Convention Center in Greenville, S.C., on Feb. 20, 2024. (Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

Former President Trump is willing to have as many debates as necessary with President Joe Biden ahead of the 2024 presidential election, citing his “obligation” to attend general election debates.

President Trump—who has so far declined to participate in any Republican primary debates—made the comments during a Fox News town hall held in Greenville, South Carolina, on Feb. 20.

“I’ll do it right now on your show. I’ll challenge him right now,” President Trump said when questioned by host Laura Ingraham if he would challenge President Biden to a debate as the two move closer to a rematch in the 2024 presidential election.

“I think you have an obligation in this case, you really have an obligation to debate, ” President Trump continued. “When you have the final Republican, the final Democrat, you have the two people, you have to debate regardless of polls.”

President Trump added that he would commit to as many debates as necessary going forward but that he does not believe President Biden is willing to debate him.

The former president has so far not made an appearance on stage during any of the Republican primary debates, citing his significant lead in polls.

Despite this, the former U.S. leader still maintains a significant lead over his competitors, multiple GOP presidential election race polls show.

Meanwhile, President Trump holds a slight lead over President Biden in general election matchup polls.

Hur Report Details Biden’s ‘Poor Memory’

Three presidential debates have been scheduled for the 2024 cycle in Texas, Virginia, and Utah, with the first one scheduled for September.

Elsewhere during the Fox News town hall, President Trump remarked on President Biden’s mental state and growing concerns over his age.

President Biden’s mental acuity is facing renewed scrutiny following the release of Special Counsel Robert Hur’s report which deemed President Biden to have mishandled classified information.

While Mr. Hur declined to charge President Biden, 81, with any crime in relation to his handling of classified documents during his time as a senator and vice president, he did express concern over the president’s “poor memory.”

“At trial, Mr. Biden would likely present himself to a jury, as he did during our interview of him, as a sympathetic, well-meaning, elderly man with a poor memory,” the special counsel wrote in his report, published earlier this month.

“Based on our direct interactions with and observations of him, he is someone for whom many jurors will want to identify reasonable doubt. It would be difficult to convince a jury that they should convict him—by then a former president well into his eighties—of a serious felony that requires a mental state of willfulness,” the report continued.

Mr. Hur also noted that President Biden exhibited a “significantly limited” memory during interviews with investigators.

President Biden has repeatedly defended his cognitive ability, telling reporters after the report was published: “My memory is fine.”

Joe Biden
President Joe Biden speaks on the Senate’s recent passage of the National Security Supplemental Bill, which provides military aid to Ukraine, Israel and Taiwan, in the State Dining Room of the White House on Feb. 13, 2024. (Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images)

Trump Says Biden ‘Has Declined’

However, during this week’s town hall, President Trump said that the current president “has no clue what’s happening.” He expressed his concern about the leader’s attempts to navigate the United States through a volatile political landscape, citing Russia’s ongoing invasion of Ukraine and hinting at the Chinese Communist Party’s increasingly threatening behavior towards Taiwan.

“He has declined and there is no question about it. But he was always sort of semi-declined if you go back 25 years,” President Trump said. “If you look at me, I feel and, I really mean this … if I felt diminished, declined in any way, I think I would know it. I think I would say ‘I’m not running.’ Someone should talk to him. If he runs, he runs.”

President Trump added that “most people that run would be stubborn or persistent and not want to give up the ghost.”

President Trump’s comments come just days ahead of the South Carolina Republican presidential primary, where he is widely anticipated to win in a head-to-head matchup with former United Nations ambassador Nikki Haley.

The Epoch Times has contacted the White House for further comment.

Samantha Flom contributed to this report.

From The Epoch Times

ntd newsletter icon
Sign up for NTD Daily
What you need to know, summarized in one email.
Stay informed with accurate news you can trust.
By registering for the newsletter, you agree to the Privacy Policy.