A Trump-Pence Strategy on the Virus: Interrupt, Distract, Change the Subject

For much of the summer, President Trump argued that Joseph R. Biden Jr. was scared to debate him, reliant on performance-enhancing drugs and barely able to remain upright for 90 minutes because of his purportedly failing health.

That was then.

Now, Mr. Trump is receiving medication to treat a case of a virus he has failed to control, and he has become the candidate casting doubt on his participation in the next debate. After the Commission on Presidential Debates announced plans to hold next week’s town hall virtually, Mr. Trump threatened to skip the event entirely, plunging the two campaigns into a daylong debate over debates.

The president’s central concern: the possibility of a mute button.

“I’m not going to waste my time on a virtual debate,” he told Fox News. “You sit behind a computer and do a debate — it’s ridiculous, and then they cut you off whenever

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