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This Week's Trump-Biden Debate Showdown to Spark High Stakes Drama, Concerns in Both Camps

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In American presidential politics, the debate at hand is always the most important. Still, the upcoming first 2024 presidential debate this Thursday in Atlanta will be difficult to surpass for uniqueness and high-stakes drama.

The initial rematch between President Joe Biden and Former President Donald Trump is the first in modern memory to be held before either party's nominating convention. 

One candidate has just been convicted of 34 felonies and will be sentenced just days before he accepts his party's nomination – yet his lead in the polls seems to be growing.

The other candidate is struggling with a record disapproval rate and lapses in thinking and bewildering actions that raise questions about his continued performance in office.

Concerns abound in both camps. Trump supporters are confident in his ability to win the debate, but some are upset that he so willingly agreed to what they call "Biden rules," to be moderated by a network and CNN co-hosts they believe are clearly biased against the 45th president.

Biden supporters have publicly voiced concerns about their candidate in recent weeks and months. Earlier in June, Democrat analyst Nate Silver broached the question of whether the president should step down.

"Dropping out would be a big risk," he posted. "But there's some threshold below which continuing to run is a bigger risk. Are we there yet? I don't know. But it's more than fair to ask." 

The Associated Press posited, "Perhaps nothing matters more than the level of energy and strength the Democratic incumbent projects on stage."

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Some conservatives worry the MAGA movement has set the bar for Biden so low that if he merely shows up and is standing at the end of 90 minutes, his performance will be declared a win.

Trump has recently stated he does "not want to underestimate Biden."

Democrats hope the president can duplicate his energy level and coherence from his March State of the Union Address. 

This week's matchup will feature the two oldest presumptive nominees in history. President Biden is 81, while former President Trump just turned 78. 

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About The Author


John Waage has covered politics and analyzed elections for CBN New since 1980, including primaries, conventions, and general elections. He also analyzes the convulsive politics of the Middle East.