- The Washington Times - Wednesday, May 15, 2024

President Biden said Wednesday that he’s ready to debate former President Donald Trump, but without the Commission on Presidential Debates.

“Donald Trump lost two debates to me in 2020,” Mr. Biden said in a video posted on X. “Since then, he hasn’t shown up for a debate. Now he’s acting like he wants to debate me again. Well, make my day, pal.”

Mr. Biden said in the video that the two should pick the dates they’re both available, and joked that he has heard Mr. Trump is “free on Wednesdays,” the usual day off from his hush money trial in New York.

Biden campaign chair Jen O’Malley Dillon sent a letter to the commission to announce that Mr. Biden would not participate in the debates that have already been scheduled but instead would opt for debates held by news organizations.

The letter suggested that the first debate could be held as soon as June, with a second in early September, ahead of early voting. It also called for a debate between vice presidential candidates in late July.

Mr. Trump said he’s open to debating the president.

“I am Ready and Willing to Debate Crooked Joe at the two proposed times in June and September,” Mr. Trump posted on Truth Social. “I would strongly recommend more than two debates and, for excitement purposes, a very large venue, although Biden is supposedly afraid of crowds – That’s only because he doesn’t get them. Just tell me when, I’ll be there. ’Let’s get ready to Rumble!!!’”

Within a few hours the ball was already rolling, with CNN extending an invitation to host a debate on June 27, which Mr. Biden announced in another post on X.

The debate will be held in CNN’s Atlanta Studios at 9 p.m.

• Mallory Wilson can be reached at mwilson@washingtontimes.com.

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