Furious Trump objects to 'unfair' MUTE button during final debate with Biden but says he will take part as he pledges to grill Democrat candidate on Hunter Biden emails even if 'totally biased' moderator does not

 President Trump's campaign has vehemently objected to news that his final debate against Democratic rival Joe Biden will feature a mute button, which will turn off candidates' microphones to prevent them talking over each other.

But the president has said he will still attend the debate for an opportunity to discuss Hunter Biden's email scandal. 

The Presidential Commission on Debates said each candidate's microphone at the debate in Nashville, Tennessee, would be silenced to allow the other to make two minutes of opening remarks at the beginning of each 15-minute segment of the debate. 

Both microphones will be turned on to allow a back-and-forth after that time. 

On Monday, the Trump campaign voiced objections to the change, but said the Republican would still take part in the Thursday night event - one of his last chances to reach a large prime-time audience before voting ends on November 3.

US President Donald Trump speaks reporters while in flight aboard Air Force One shortly before landing at Andrews Air Force Base

US President Donald Trump speaks reporters while in flight aboard Air Force One shortly before landing at Andrews Air Force Base

Pictured: President Trump
Pictured: presidential candidate Joe Biden

President Trump's campaign objected to a new mute button feature that will be used during the final debate between him and Joe Biden (right)

President Donald Trump (left) and Democratic presidential candidate former Vice President Joe Biden (right) during the first presidential debate in September

President Donald Trump (left) and Democratic presidential candidate former Vice President Joe Biden (right) during the first presidential debate in September

The new mute feature was added after the president repeatedly talked over both Biden and the moderator at last month's debate in violation of its agreed-upon rules.   

'I’ll participate, I just think it is very unfair,' Trump told reporters on Monday.

'I will participate, but it’s very unfair that they changed the topics and it is very unfair that again we have an anchor who is totally biased.' 

That point was reiterated by campaign manager Bill Stepien said in a statement.   

'President Trump is committed to debating Joe Biden regardless of last-minute rule changes from the biased commission in their latest attempt to provide advantage to their favored candidate.

The statement then diverted from the debate itself to talking points about Hunter Biden, Joe Biden's youngest son and the subject of reignited attacks from Trump's camp. 


'This was supposed to be the foreign policy debate, so the President still looks forward to forcing Biden to answer the number one relevant question of whether he’s been compromised by the Communist Party of China.

'Why did Biden allow his son Hunter to sell access to him while he was vice president, and why were there Chinese payment arrangements for Joe himself worked out by Hunter and his sketchy partners? If the media won’t ask Joe Biden these questions, the President will, and there will be no escape for Biden.' 

The Biden campaign did not immediately respond to a request for comment. 

According to the alleged emails published by the Post about his Chinese dealings, Hunter struck a deal for $30 million plus in bonuses 'based on introductions alone' over three years after his father left office, then was offered a 'much more lasting and lucrative arrangement.'

The Chinese emails focus on Hunter's dealings with Ye Jianming, the former chairman of CEFC in 2017, after his father had left office and when it was thought he would not run in 2020.

Ye has not been seen since he was taken into custody by Chinese authorities in 2018 amid rumored links to the Chinese military and intelligence services.

The remaining 20 per cent was split with 10 per cent going to 'Jim' who is otherwise unnamed, and then '10 held by H for the big guy?'

The big guy in the alleged emails was previously unnamed until Fox claimed that it was in reference to Joe Biden.

Zang appears to be a reference to Zang Jian Jun who was the former executive director of CEFC.

The email also outlines a 'provisional agreement' where 80 per cent of the 'equity' would be shared equally among four people whose initials appear to relate to Hunter and three other recipients. 

The email divides the equity into '20 H' - meaning 20 per cent equity to Hunter; 20 per cent to RW, meaning Rob Walker, also of the jc2r consultancy; 20 per cent to another man called Tony Bubulinski.

Hunter Biden and his father Joe Biden in 2016. Fox now claims that Hunter was signed up to hold onto a payment for his father in a deal with a Chinese energy firm

Hunter Biden and his father Joe Biden in 2016. Fox now claims that Hunter was signed up to hold onto a payment for his father in a deal with a Chinese energy firm

The Trump campaign's push back was on par with the President's repeated attacks on the debate process, which has extended to Commission on Presidential Debates and all three moderators. 

His most recent attacks were leveled at the third and final moderator, Kristen Welker, who was allegedly heard on hot mic tipping off a Hillary Clinton staffer about post-debate interview questions in 2016. 

Welker, 44, has served as a White House correspondent for NBC News since 2011 and performed some coverage for the contentious 2016 presidential election.

The New York Post and The Sun report that the incident happened during a MSNBC segment with Hillary Clinton’s Communications Director Jennifer Palmieri. 

The Post's Jon Levine reports that Welker gave Palmieri 'at least one question she planned to ask during a post-debate interview in Michigan.'

'I’m going to ask you about Flint,' Welker told Palmieri. 

NBC White House correspondent Kristen Welker was named the third and final moderator for the presidential debates

NBC White House correspondent Kristen Welker was named the third and final moderator for the presidential debates

According to The Post, Welker reportedly came from a Democratic family that donated money into party coffers and Trump's political opponents for years. 

Welker's parents, of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, have allegedly donated 'tens of thousands of dollars' to liberal candidates. 

They allegedly donated $20,000 to Barack Obama, while Joe Biden reportedly received $3,00 and Hillary Clinton was given $2,100. 

As much as $7,300 was donated to the Democratic National Committee between 2004 and 2020, The Post reports. 

After the allegations hit social media, Trump responded by labeling Welker as 'unfair.'

'She’s always been terrible & unfair, just like most of the Fake News reporters, but I’ll still play the game. The people know! How’s Steve Scully doing?'   

Trump: 'She’s always been terrible & unfair, just like most of the Fake News reporters, but I’ll still play the game. The people know!'

Trump: 'She’s always been terrible & unfair, just like most of the Fake News reporters, but I’ll still play the game. The people know!'

Trump continued to blast Welker as he traveled on the campaign trail.

He told his supporters in Arizona on Monday that Welker was 'a radical Democrat,' adding that she has been 'screaming questions at me for a long time.'

The attacks were similar to the one he launched against Fox News anchor Chris Wallace and C-SPAN's Steve Scully. 

Wallace moderated the first presidential debate, which was quickly labeled a disaster as critics blasted him for losing control of the proceedings,

Scully was scheduled to moderate the now-canceled second debate, but he was suspended after admitting that he lied about his Twitter account being hacked after a questionable exchange. 

Mark Levin: 'Next debate moderator, another with deep Democrat ties'

Mark Levin: 'Next debate moderator, another with deep Democrat ties'

Newt Gingrich blasted Welker on Twitter and alleged the debate commission was biased

Newt Gingrich blasted Welker on Twitter and alleged the debate commission was biased 

CNN's Jake Tapper defended Kristen Welker on Twitter, saying 'If any other outlet started covering the political donations of *the parents* of folks who work at Fox there would be widespread outrage and rightly so'

CNN's Jake Tapper defended Kristen Welker on Twitter, saying 'If any other outlet started covering the political donations of *the parents* of folks who work at Fox there would be widespread outrage and rightly so'

Several GOP members and Trump loyalists have followed the President's lead in his apparent distaste for Welker.  

'Next debate moderator, another with deep Democrat ties,' tweeted Mark Levin, a right-wing radio host who also has a Fox News show.

Fox and Friend's host Brian Kilmeade bashed Welker as well, claiming 'She’s often the most abrasive, most dismissive, most disrespectful reporter in all those briefings.' 

Newt Gingrich, former House Speaker, alleged that Welker 'won't be objective' during Thursday's debate.

'Savannah Guthrie’s bias against President Trump will probably be exceeded by Kristen Welker’s bias at the next debate. Her family gave thousands of dollars to Obama, Clinton and Biden. She registered as a Democrat. Her family spent Christmas with the Obamas at the White House,' he wrote.

'Choosing Democrat Welker as a “moderator” is one more example of why the Commission on Presidential Debates should be abolished and no Republican candidate should ever again agree to work with them.'

President Trump has criticized Kristen Welker in recent weeks, but he previously praised her and offered a public congratulated over her new job

President Trump has criticized Kristen Welker in recent weeks, but he previously praised her and offered a public congratulated over her new job

But Trump previously praised Welker and personally congratulated her in January after she was named co-anchor of Weekend Today.

And members of Trump's inner circle have also commended the reporter for being fair.

Jason Mille this month confessed he had 'a very high opinion' of Welker and told Fox News 'she’s going to do an excellent job as the moderator for the third debate.

'I think she’s a journalist who’s very fair in her approach and I think that she’ll be a very good choice for this third debate.'

Journalists like CNN's Jake Tapper came to Welker's defense. He called the New York Post's story about her family 'hideous and unjournalistic.'

 'If any other outlet started covering the political donations of *the parents* of folks who work at Fox there would be widespread outrage and rightly so,' he wrote. 

More than 30 million Americans have already cast their ballots, limiting Trump's chances of reframing a contest that national and state opinion polls show him trailing.

Trump repeatedly interrupted Biden during a chaotic and ill-tempered debate on September 29, at one point provoking Biden to snap: 'Will you shut up, man?'

Pictured: President Donald J. Trump (center) and Democratic presidential nominee former United States Vice President Joe Biden (right), with Chris Wallace moderating in September

Pictured: President Donald J. Trump (center) and Democratic presidential nominee former United States Vice President Joe Biden (right), with Chris Wallace moderating in September 

Trump backed out of a second scheduled debate set for last Thursday over a disagreement about the virtual format following his COVID-19 infection. At that time, he raised concerns about having his microphone muted.

'You sit behind a computer and do a debate - it's ridiculous, and then they cut you off whenever they want,' Trump said in an October 8 interview on Fox Business.

Earlier on Monday, Trump's campaign said it was unhappy with the announced set of topics for Thursday's debate, arguing that it should focus more on foreign policy and asserting that the nonpartisan group was tilted toward Biden.

Stepien shared the letter from the Trump campaign to the Commission on Presidential Debates on Twitter, which he pointedly referred to as the 'Biden Debate Commission.'

Much of it was rooted in claims the commission favored Biden, as well as another wave of attacks criticzing his character and political performance.

'The Commissions pro-Biden antics have turned the entire debate season into a fiasco and it is little wonder why the public has lost faith in its objectivity,' he claimed.

Pictured: a letter from Trump's campaign manager Bill Stepien to to the Commission on Presidential Debates

Pictured: a letter from Trump's campaign manager Bill Stepien to to the Commission on Presidential Debates

Biden's campaign said both sides previously agreed to let moderators choose the subjects. It said Trump wanted to avoid discussing his stewardship of the coronavirus pandemic, which surveys show is the top issue for voters.

'As usual, the president is more concerned with the rules of a debate than he is getting a nation in crisis the help it needs,' Biden spokesman TJ Ducklo said.

The number of Americans who voted early reached 30.2 million on Monday, according to the University of Florida's United States Elections Project. That number represents more than one-fifth of all the votes cast in the 2016 election.

Early voting is likely to ramp up this week as more states open up voting centers for those who want to avoid possible coronavirus exposure at crowded Election Day polling sites.

In Florida, where more than 2.5 million have already voted by mail, residents lined up for the first day of early in-person voting. A Reuters/Ipsos poll released last week showed Trump and Biden effectively tied in the state, which is seen as a must-win for the president.

Hundreds of people, most wearing face masks, stood in pouring rain in the morning outside the public library in Coral Gables, a majority-Hispanic city near Miami.

Louis Perez, 57, an insurance fraud investigator, said he was voting for Biden because of Trump's handling of the coronavirus pandemic.

'He lied about it right from the beginning,' Perez, who is not affiliated with a party, said of Trump.

Registered Republican Antonio Sanchez, an architect who arrived in the United States from Communist Cuba, said he supported Trump because he 'stands for freedom' and against socialism.

'My two daughters are doctors,' said Sanchez, 59. 'I don't think this could have happened anyplace other than America.'


Furious Trump objects to 'unfair' MUTE button during final debate with Biden but says he will take part as he pledges to grill Democrat candidate on Hunter Biden emails even if 'totally biased' moderator does not Furious Trump objects to 'unfair' MUTE button during final debate with Biden but says he will take part as he pledges to grill Democrat candidate on Hunter Biden emails even if 'totally biased' moderator does not Reviewed by STATION GOSSIP on 09:41 Rating: 5

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