He wants to negotiate
Sometime soon, Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton will meet on the debate stage where millions of Americans will see the two party nominees duel face-to-face in their back and forth battle for the White House. That is, unless Trump says no.
There have been rumors circulating that the real estate mogul doesn’t want to debate Clinton. In fact, the chatter has gotten so strong that Trump was asked about it directly in an interview with Time magazine. The billionaire insisted that “I want to debate very badly,” but admitted that he’s begun a process of “negotiating” with the debate commission over exactly how, where and in what format those debates will take place.
“I will absolutely do three debates,” Trump told Time. “I want to debate very badly. But I have to see the conditions.”
For the past 30 years, the Commission on Presidential Debates has managed the general election debates, with candidates typically meeting three times. The formats often vary but usually contain at least one side-by-side debate and a townhall style discussion. So far, the commission has scheduled three 90-minute debates for this October in New York, St. Louis and Las Vegas.
Trump insisted that his negotiating is only over small details that won’t interfere with the actual debates themselves. But he did acknowledge he might object to specific, potential moderators.
“I renegotiated the debates in the primaries, remember? They were making a fortune on them and they had us in for three and a half hours and I said that’s ridiculous,” he told Time. “I’m sure they’ll be open to any suggestions I have, because I think they’ll be very fair suggestions. But I haven’t [seen the conditions] yet. They’re actually presented to me tonight.”
Another variable that could have a big impact on those debates? The Commission acknowledged that they are considering adding a third podium for Libertarian Party nominee Gary Johnson, who has been polling in double-digits in some polls.