Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden has said next week’s scheduled debate with Republican President Donald Trump should not be held if Trump is still infected with the coronavirus.
The former vice president, nonetheless, said he would base his participation in the Oct. 15 debate in Miami upon recommendations from medical experts.
“Well, I think if he still has Covid, we shouldn’t have a debate,” Biden told reporters in Maryland on Tuesday. “I think we’re gonna have to follow very strict guidelines. Too many people have been infected and it’s a very serious problem.”
“And so I’ll be guided by the guidelines of the Cleveland Clinic, and what the docs say is the right thing to do — if and when he shows up for debate.”
Trump announced in the middle of the night on Thursday that he had tested positive for the coronavirus and a day after was admitted to the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center. However, he left the hospital on Monday and went back to the White House, where he is expected to continue his recovery.
Landing at the White House on Marine One, Trump removed his face mask and declared he feels great.
Anthony Fauci, Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, has said, however, “You are not out of it until you have gone several days out and [are] doing well.”
Trump had repeatedly disagreed with Fauci on COVID-19, including social-distancing guidelines and masks wearing, calling the doctor as “a little bit of an alarmist.”
The president is now under criticism for endangering his staffer in the White House, where 14 officials have so far been diagnosed with the viral infection.
When asked about Biden’s comments, the president’s campaign spokesman Tim Murtaugh said, “President Trump will be healthy and will be there. There’s no getting out of this one for Biden, and his protectors in the media can’t cover for him.”
Trump has been looking for options on how to get his message out and cut into Biden’s lead in battleground states where the Nov. 3 election will be decided, according to his advisers.
The advisors said they had been discussing Trump delivering a national address, while a speech to senior voters is being contemplated for Thursday.
A CNN survey released on Tuesday found Biden leading the incumbent by 16 points, his largest lead of the election cycle.
The survey also found likely voters were supporting Biden by wide margins on several main issues including, the coronavirus pandemic, public healthcare, Supreme Court nominations, racial inequality, and on crime and public safety.