- Mike Pence and Kamala Harris will face off in their only vice-presidential debate on Wednesday, after a spat over the event’s coronavirus precautions. Donald Trump and Joe Biden are set to lay low, with the president as of Monday “not an entirely out of the woods” with his coronavirus infection. Early voting begins in Arizona, a battleground that has become increasingly competitive for Biden. With Trump still recovering from the coronavirus, the next steps for his campaign remain uncertain with 27 days left until the November 3 election.
Hello and welcome to Al Jazeera’s continuing coverage of the United States elections. This is Joseph Stepansky.
Wednesday, October 7: 10:00 ET – Who has tested positive in Trump’s orbit?
A growing number of White House staff and senior Republicans have tested positive for the novel coronavirus since United States President Donald Trump revealed he had contracted the disease.
The infections have roiled campaigning for the November 3 presidential election, rattled financial markets and slowed the work of Congress, with the Senate vowing to delay any votes now that three members of the Republican majority have tested positive.
Several people who met with Trump last week said they had since tested negative, but it can take days for someone who has been exposed to the virus to develop symptoms or to test positive.
Find out who’s who here.
[Alia Chughtai/Al Jazeera] 09:30 ET – Pence gives into Plexiglass at debate: Report
Pence acquiesced to the use of Plexiglass barriers on Tuesday night, after his team initially objected, saying they were not medically necessary.
Pence’s team backed down following a series of talks, sources familiar with the situation told Politico.
The barriers had reportedly been agreed to earlier in the week by both campaigns before Pence’s about-face on Tuesday.
09:00 ET – Pence-Harris debate takes on heightened importance: Analysis
Even if Donald Trump had not become the international poster child for COVID-19, he was always destined to loom over the vice-presidential debate in Salt Lake City on Wednesday, especially after his disastrous opening encounter with Joe Biden, debate analyst Alan Schroeder writes for Al Jazeera.
Now, the president’s illness – and the uncertainty shrouding the state of his health – present Republican running mate Mike Pence with a tricky challenge. The situation also complicates the task of Democratic nominee Kamala Harris, leaving her with a delicate line to walk. Even in absentia, even from his sickbed, Trump commands centre stage at the vice-presidential debate.
The debate between Pence and Harris, which begins at 9pm ET (01:00GMT) has the potential to shatter viewership records for vice-presidential debates, which normally draw much smaller audiences than their top-of-the-ticket counterparts. The exception was Biden’s debate against vice-presidential candidate Sarah Palin in 2008.
Read more here.
Mike Pence and Kamala Harris will face off in the only vice-presidential debate on Wednesday [Reuters]_______________________________________________________________
Read all the updates from Tuesday, (October 6) here.