The first presidential debate was not much more than interruptions and bashing.
While some called the debate ugly, others flat out said it was a “sh*t show,” as CNN’s Dana Bash said. CNN’s Jake Tapper described it as “a hot mess inside a dumpster fire inside of a train wreck.”
Following the debate in Ohio, CBS News polled those who watched it. According to those polled, Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden came out on top winning the debate. Biden clutched 48% while President Donald Trump garnered 41% in the poll and only 10% of respondents said it was a tie.
Many offered their thoughts on the debate, including former mayor of South Bend, Ind., Pete Buttigieg (D) who said, “America was the world’s leading democracy. Then this happened. Now what?”
Additionally, top Republican strategist Russ Schriefer said, “Seriously — if there weren’t any more debates, would that be a problem? Anyone served by this mess?”
CBS NEWS BATTLEGROUND TRACKER— CBS News Poll (@CBSNewsPoll) September 30, 2020
Instant poll of debate watchers: more say Joe Biden won tonight’s debate pic.twitter.com/dHZqV95wqB
CBS News also polled on the tone of the debate, to which 83% of respondents said it was negative while only 17% said it was positive.
Eight in 10 voters who watched tonight called the tone of the debate negative. pic.twitter.com/zvFnn5QmZy— CBS News Poll (@CBSNewsPoll) September 30, 2020
The post-debate poll also found that majority of those polled who watched said the debate made them “annoyed.” Only 17% said they were “informed” following the first debate ahead of the 2020 presidential election.
Many of those polled ahead of Tuesday night’s debate said that both Trump and Biden should explain their plans and inspire confidence more than showing “who he is” and avoiding mistakes.
How did the debate make voters who watched feel?— CBS News Poll (@CBSNewsPoll) September 30, 2020
Far more felt annoyed than informed. pic.twitter.com/eJHiTS9oCT
During an interview on CNN, undecided Ohio voters chimed in with their thoughts after Tuesday’s debate. One voter said, “President Trump clearly has control issues. He couldn’t stop his anger.” Another voter said there was “too much going on” to hear Trump and Biden’s responses.
“It was like watching my own children having a disagreement at home,” a voter told the outlet.
Biden’s running mate Kamala Harris was asked by CNN’s Jake Tapper if Biden “should participate in a second or third debate,” to which she responded, “Joe Biden’s never going to refuse to talk to the American people,” as IJR reported.