The second presidential debate between President Donald Trump and Democratic nominee Joe Biden was originally scheduled for Thursday, October 15. The plan was for a town hall style debate between the two candidates.
But then Trump and numerous other White House staffers and Republican lawmakers tested positive for the virus that's killed over 200 thousand Americans. After three days of treatment at Walter Reed Medical Center, the President said he was still looking forward to the debate.
Due to concerns of further spreading the highly contagious virus, the CPD announced that the second debate would be done remotely, as multiple events including both parties' conventions had done before. Trump refused and pulled out of the second debate, saying he would only debate Biden in person.
As a result, Biden's campaign announced that Biden would hold his own town hall, which would air on ABC at 8pm on the night originally planned for the debate.
Never one to be upstaged, Trump's campaign coordinated with NBC to hold a town hall for him on the same night at the same time.
NBC faced widespread criticism for forcing voters to choose which event to watch, inviting accusations of using an election to orchestrate a ratings duel.
But Trump's critics aren't the only ones criticizing NBC—Trump himself is as well.
Three and a half hours before his scheduled appearance, Trump fired off a tweet calling NBC fake news and mused whether or not they'd be as kind to him as he claims they've been to Biden.
Few people felt sympathetic for NBC.
Some urged NBC to cancel rather than take the insults of the candidate they're hosting.
The U.S. election is on November 3rd, but early voting is already underway in at least 40 states.