How Long Is The Debate Tonight (And Why)?

Exact Answer: 90 minutes

The debate is 90 minutes long and has no ad breaks. It divides into six slots, 15 minutes segments each that the judge will choose.

Trump’s campaign has scrutinized the above topics, saying that they expected a debate on foreign policies. The Head of the Commission on Presidential Debates announced that as false. Trump has criticized the judge, Welker, as acting biased, as he has other judges. The Committee and also a Fox News host protected Welker’s sincerity.

How Long Is The Debate Tonight


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How Long Is The Debate Tonight?

Candidates; Year Of Presidential Debate No. Of Debates Conducted
Vice President Richard Nixon vs Senator John F. Kennedy; 19604
President Gerald Ford vs Former Governor Jimmy Carter; 19763
Senator John McCain vs Senator Barack Obama; 20123
Former Secretary of States Hillary Clinton vs Businessman Donald Trump 3
President Donald Trump vs Former Vice President Joe Biden2

America’s wide political divide was laid bare on a Thursday night as Donald Trump and his Democratic challenger Joe Biden went head-to-head in the third and final presidential debate of the 2020 race for the White House. It was an empty auditorium at Belmont University in Tennessee. Both the candidates began their competing concepts for the country and clashed over some of the most crucial issues faced in America.

Till the election day, the debate was the last opportunity for both the candidates to achieve the attention of American citizens, as they attempt to acquire votes among their respective political bases and win over floating voters yet to decide on who they want in the Oval Office next year. The clash between the two aired for 90 minutes without ad interruptions from 21:00 EST to 22:30 EST on NBC.

The debate host by the White House correspondent, Kristen Welker, was also set to question the two candidates on leadership, American families, and national security, with both Mr. Trump and Mr. Biden each given two minutes each to answer. A coin toss decided on who got to answer the first question and who gave their concluding observations. The Commission on Presidential Debates organized the election debates for more than three decades.

All the competition has been 90 minutes in length, aside from 1980, when Ronald Regan and Jimmy Carter went for an hour.

Why Would It Take That Long For The Debate Tonight?

Historians say that modern debates traced to a series of Illinois Senate debates held by Abraham Lincoln and Stephen Douglas in 1858. In 1940 Wendell Wilkie became the primary 20th-century candidate to challenge his opponent to a debate but then-president Roosevelt refused to require part.

The first presidential debate took place in 1960, between John Kennedy and then vice-president Richard Nixon, with Kennedy going on to win the race for the White House. The committee further announced days before the debate that with the information of Trump’s constant interruptions during the first one, it will silence the candidate’s microphone who was not speaking during the two-minute opening segment for each candidate.

After the candidates appointed two minutes, there was an open discussion where both microphones were on, but they must respect their time. Both candidates strategized how to work with the new setup. Advisers were asking Trump to interrupt less and let Biden talk more.

Meanwhile, Biden did a more reserved debate prep than Trump. The president used his demonstrations and chats with his advisers to prepare and was likely to bring up uncorroborated, alleged emails about Biden’s son Hunter Biden alleging he tried to leverage his father’s vice presidency as a means of business. Biden said it was a slander campaign and noted that Trump’s children accused of profiting money off their father’s presidency.


To conclude with some additional information, in 2016, the first debate between Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton became the most-watched debate with 84 million viewers. In 2016, the primary debate between Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton became the most-watched ever with 84 million viewers.
It beat the1980 debate between Reagan and Carter, which saw 80.2 million viewers tuned.



Last Updated : 23 February, 2024

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