Viewers who want to watch the first 2016 Presidential Debate live online — with real-time fact checking of both Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton — can look no further.
As the highly anticipated first debate arrives, there is a deep debate over whether the moderators should offer real-time fact-checking of the candidates. Clinton’s camp has pushed for moderator Lester Holt to step in of one of the candidates tells an untruth, while Trump’s team is pushing back against this.
It doesn’t seem that Holt will be doing much fact-checking, but viewers who watch the first presidential debate live online will be able to see a fully fact-checked version (the streaming video can be found here) thanks to Bloomberg TV.
The first debate starts at 9 p.m. ET on Monday, with coverage on virtually every major news network. It is seen as one of the most important debates in several election cycles, with the race once dominated by Hillary Clinton suddenly seeming very much like a toss-up as Trump has closed in quickly. Her national lead is down to a sliver while her electoral map advantage has been wiped away.
Despite the controversy over whether moderators should offer live fact checking, it’s not clear if any of them are too willing to step into the fray. After Candy Crowley found controversy in 2012 for correcting Republican Mitt Romney on a point many believed he was correct on, this round of moderators aren’t too willing to become part of the debate themselves.
“I do not believe that it’s my job to be a truth squad. It’s up to the other person to catch them on that,” said Fox News host Chris Wallace, who is hosting the third and final 2016 Presidential Debate (via ABC News). “I certainly am going to try to maintain some reasonable semblance of equal time. If one of them is filibustering, I’m going to try to break in respectfully and give the other person a chance to talk.”
And the Commission on Presidential Debates, the bi-partisan committee that set up the details and the groundwork for the three debates, wants moderators to stay out of the fray as well.
“I have to say, in our history, the moderators have found it appropriate to allow the candidates to be the ones who talk about the accuracy or the fairness of what the other candidate or candidates might have said,” said Janet Brown, the commission’s executive director. “I think, personally, if you start to get into the fact-check, I am not sure — what is a big fact, and what is a little fact? And if you and I have different sources of information, does your source about the unemployment rate agree with my source?”
But while the candidates won’t get fact checking during the 90-minute event, those who watch the first 2016 Presidential Debate live online will get to see a real-time version of it. Bloomberg TV has announced that it will conduct on-screen fact-checking of statements from both Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton, Politico reported.
None of the other major networks carrying the debate have committed to fact checking in real time, the report noted. While there will be plenty of re-hashing in the post-debate analysis, only Bloomberg TV will offer this in real time.
Those who want to watch live streaming video of the first 2016 Presidential Debate with full fact checking can watch along in the embedded video below.
Those who want to watch the first presidential debate live online but would rather just focus on the candidates can find links to a number of other live streaming videos (sans fact checking) by clicking here.
[Featured Image by Andrew Harnik/AP Images]