Voters can watch the 2016 vice presidential debate live online and see if the showdown between Tim Kaine and Mike Pence can generate the giant media attention that the first presidential debate brought.
The vice president picks from the Republican and Democratic parties will be squaring off in the one and only vice presidential debate on Tuesday, with the event starting at 9 p.m. ET. Like the presidential debate, it will be covered across many media outlets and also available live online for those unable to make it to a television (and it can be seen in the embedded video below).
The 90-minute debate will take place at Longwood University in Farmville, Virginia. CBSN anchor Elaine Quijano will serve as the moderator.
The 2016 vice presidential debate comes at a key moment in the race for president. In the final three weeks of September, Republican Donald Trump crept closer and closer to Hillary Clinton, erasing her once-large lead and pulling into a near-tie. But that changed abruptly after last week’s presidential debate, which pundits and viewers said nearly unanimously was won by Hillary Clinton.
Trump continued the downslide in the days that followed, picking a fight with former Miss Universe Alicia Machado and then being rocked by a series of bombshell reports. There was one claiming that Trump had violated the Cuba embargo to lay the groundwork for a Trump hotel there, followed by a report that his Trump Foundation had been illegally seeking donations in New York, and another that Trump may have avoided paying federal income tax for close to 20 years after he wrote off a nearly $1 billion loss in 1995.
So those who watch the 2016 vice presidential debate live online could see Mike Pence in need of some damage control. Political experts see the debate as an opportunity for the Indiana governor to speak directly to American voters, helping to stem some of the bleeding of the past week.
As CNN noted, there is considerably less pressure on Hillary Clinton and former Virginia governor Tim Kaine.
“Pence needs to help Donald Trump recover from his lost week and re-focus his message, as well as convince people the White House is in good hands with the unpredictable Trump,” the report noted. “Kaine wants [to] ensure Hillary Clinton can solidify her post-debate gains in several swing states and in national polls.”
The issue of Donald Trump’s taxes is likely to be a big topic at the vice presidential debate. Hillary Clinton and her team have been aggressive in their attack on Trump, both for avoiding taxes and for losing close to $1 billion during a time of economic boom across the country.
Pence has been defending Trump, saying it was “brilliant” for the Republican candidate to use tax laws to avoid paying taxes — though neither he nor Trump have explicitly confirmed that Trump did, in fact, avoid taxes for 18 years.
“Look for Kaine to possibly exploit the fact that Pence has been transparent in releasing his taxes, compared to Trump who hasn’t released them and is the nominee. And the Virginia senator will no doubt talk about Trump’s temperament as commander-in-chief,” CNN noted.
Other left-leaning groups are calling on Tim Kaine to press Mike Pence on the anti-LGBT stances he has struck in Indiana. These could be particularly effective for Clinton’s chances in North Carolina, a swing state where she has moved into a small lead and where many voters are motivated by the anti-LGBT laws passed in the last year.
Viewers who want to watch the 2016 vice presidential debate live online and would like to try another option than the video above can find streaming video at CBSN.
[Featured Image by Darron Cummings/AP Images]