Former President Donald Trump announced on Friday that he’s willing to take on President Joe Biden in a fourth presidential debate—this one with NBC and Telemundo—but his offer was met by a refusal by the Biden campaign.

President Trump said in a post on social media that he had accepted an invitation for a fourth presidential debate, adding to a slate of debates that the former president has pushed for as he seeks to oust the incumbent from the White House in November.

“I have accepted a fourth Presidential Debate against Crooked Joe Biden, this time with NBC & Telemundo,” President Trump wrote in the post. “It is important as Republicans that we WIN with our Great Hispanic Community, who Biden has devastated with Crippling Inflation, High Gas Prices, Crime in our Streets, and Border Chaos.”

Earlier, President Trump said he had accepted a third presidential debate hosted by Fox News on Oct. 2, but the Biden campaign also declined that offer.

“These are the Debates that Voters have been asking for, and these are the Debates that Voters will get!” he wrote in his Friday post, apparently seeking to goad the Biden campaign into additional debates.

While the Biden campaign did not respond to a request for comment from The Epoch Times on President Trump’s proposal, a Biden campaign official told NBC News that it had declined the two new offers and that the president isn’t willing to face off against his rival at any additional debates beyond the two already agreed to.

“The debate about debates is over,” a Biden campaign official said, per the NBC News report.

So far, the Trump and Biden campaigns have agreed to two presidential debates—the first one will be hosted by CNN in Atlanta on June 27 and the second one by ABC News on Sept. 10, for which a location has not yet been decided.

President Trump’s campaign has also accepted an offer from Fox News to host a vice presidential debate in Virginia, with the Biden campaign’s stance on that proposal remaining unclear.

President Biden’s campaign, in turn, has accepted an offer from CBS News for a vice presidential debate, a proposal that the Trump campaign has not yet agreed to.

Debates In Focus

The two rival campaigns have bypassed the traditional process run by the Commission on Presidential Debates (CPD) and have arranged their own debate schedule.

Back in November 2023, the CPD proposed three presidential debates (on Sept. 16, Oct. 1, and Oct. 9) and one vice presidential debate scheduled for Sept. 25.

Frank J. Fahrenkopf Jr., co-founder and co-chair of the CPD, told Politico this week that he was stunned to receive a letter from the Biden campaign declaring that the president wouldn’t participate in the commission’s fall debates, which the Biden team reportedly described as “noisy spectacles” that were scheduled too late in the process to accommodate early voting.

In a May 1 statement, the CPD defended its scheduling of debates, arguing that the first debate—scheduled for Sept. 16—would be the earliest televised general election debate ever held.
“Yesterday, it was claimed that the CPD’s schedule does not begin until after ’millions of Americans will have already cast their ballots.’ The CPD purposefully chose September 16 after a comprehensive study of early voting rules in every state,” the commission stated.

Every state except North Carolina and Pennsylvania start their early voting after Sept. 16, the CPD argued, while Mr. Fahrenkopf told Politico that the Biden campaign hadn’t done their homework.

“On September 6, 2024, North Carolina county boards of elections will begin to mail absentee ballots to citizens who have requested them. Once those ballots are received, they can be returned to a board of elections office in person or via mail. In-person early voting in North Carolina does not begin until October 17,” CPD said in the statement.

“On September 16, the day of the first debate, Pennsylvania voters can receive, complete and return ballots at their county boards of elections. Every other state starts early voting later, as of the most recently published information,” it added.

Still, the two candidates have opted to bypass the CPD, with the earliest televised presidential debate in history now set to take place on June 27 on CNN in the key battleground state of Georgia.

“The debate will be held in CNN’s Atlanta studios,” the network said in a statement. “CNN Anchors Jake Tapper and Dana Bash will serve as moderators. To ensure candidates may maximize the time allotted in the debate, no audience will be present.”

President Trump has said he would prefer a large audience, but the campaign agreed to the CNN debate with no audience.

The current and former president also agreed to accept the Sept. 10 debate on ABC News.

Trump Campaign Calls for More Debates

In a memorandum addressed to the Biden campaign headquarters, the Trump campaign escalated its calls for a series of debates leading up to the 2024 presidential election.

The letter, dated May 15 and signed by Chris LaCivita and Susie Wiles on behalf of Donald J. Trump for President 2024, Inc., expressed satisfaction that President Biden had agreed to engage in a debate with President Trump.

“Today is a good day for America’s voters, now that Joe Biden has FINALLY accepted President Trump’s debate challenge,” the memo reads.

The Trump campaign is advocating additional debates, suggesting that there should be one debate per month from June through September, in addition to the vice presidential debate.

The campaign said the rationale behind this proposal is the belief that American voters deserve more opportunities to hear directly from the candidates, especially in light of current national issues.

Biden campaign Chair Jen O’Malley Dillon rejected the prospect of additional debates in a May 15 statement to media outlets.

“No more games. No more chaos, no more debate about debates,” she said in the statement. “We’ll see Donald Trump on June 27th in Atlanta – if he shows up.”

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