With elections coming up in November, many wonder if we could have a controversial election, and how likely it is.


Could the debates for President Donald Trump do what the conventions didn’t?

A poll by USA TODAY / Suffolk University shows that many voters believe this is possible.

A larger proportion – 47% – predicted Trump will win the debates than the 41% who said Democratic candidate Joe Biden.

This is despite the fact that only 33% of respondents who have seen at least some of the conventions said the political events made it more likely that they would support Trump. 37% said the conventions made them less likely.

Independents voted Trump over Biden as the likely winner of the debates by 10 percentage points: 47% -37%.

“Trump will be all over Biden,” said Curtis Saffi, 38, an independent man from Hampton, Georgia, who plans to vote for Biden. However, he expects a different outcome in the vice-presidential debate.

“Kamala Harris,” added Saffi, “she will be (Mike) pence everywhere.”

While 79% of Democrats predicted their presidential candidate would come out on top in the debates, 87% of Republicans said Trump would do so.

“I have a feeling it will just be a one-way show,” said David Brockman, 38, a Trump supporter from Columbus, Indiana, who was among those surveyed.

Dana Carbonell, 35, a Democrat from Weehawken, New Jersey, said Biden will win if he “does a good fact-checking” on Trump.

Trump, she said, had “his broken lies that he kept repeating”.

The first of the three presidential debates will take place on September 29th.

The first debate between Trump and Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton in 2016 drew 84 million viewers, the record for a presidential debate.

A large segment of voters have told the Pew Research Center over the years that the debates were very or somewhat helpful in deciding who to vote for. But only 10% of those who voted in 2016 stated that they made their decision “during or shortly after” the debates. Almost two-thirds said they made a decision at the time of the conventions or even earlier.

2020 election: Chris Wallace, Susan Page among the moderators for the Presidential and Vice-Presidential Debates

Biden leads Trump by 50% to 43% nationwide in a USA TODAY / Suffolk University poll conducted in the days after the conventions. It was one of several post-Congress polls that showed either a small bump for Trump or no bounce at all.

Due to the coronavirus pandemic, the parties conducted most of their conventions online rather than in the crowded arenas of previous years.

Four in ten of the USA TODAY / Suffolk University Poll who viewed the conventions thought this year’s version worked better. Three out of ten said the format was worse. The rest felt the same way or had no opinion.

The survey of 1,000 registered voters, which was carried out by landline and mobile phone from August 28 to 31, has an error rate of plus or minus 3.1 points.

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