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Trump: ‘I’m not gonna waste my time on a virtual debate’

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Screenshot 2020 02 18 13.58.31

President Donald Trump said he wouldn’t participate in a virtual debate after the Commission on Presidential Debates (CPD) announced that next week’s second presidential debate would be held virtually, in an interview with Fox Business host Maria Bartiromo.

“I beat him easily in the first debate, according to the polls that I’ve seen. But, I’ve beat him easily, I felt I beat him easily, I think he felt it too. He wouldn’t answer any questions and he had the protection of Chris Wallace all night long. I thought Chris Wallace was a disaster,” Trump said.

“But I beat him in the first debate. The second debate we have a never-Trumper as a host, but that’s ok because I’ll beat him in the second debate also, but I’m not gonna do a virtual debate.”

The CPD cited health and safety concerns led to their decision. The President tested positive for COVID-19 last Thursday and received treatment over the weekend at Walter Reed Military Medical Hospital. He returned to the White House on Monday and his doctors say he’s on the mend and has been asymptomatic for days.

“I’m not gonna waste my time on a virtual debate,” Trump said. “That’s not what debating’s all about. You sit behind a computer and do a debate. It’s ridiculous and then they cut you off whenever they want.”

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Biden frees Venezuelan President Maduro’s drug dealing relatives in prisoner swap

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Joe Biden

President Biden freed two of Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro’s relatives Saturday in exchange for seven jailed Americans. The two nephews of Maduro’s wife Cilia Flores, had been convicted in the United States for drug dealing and sentenced to 18 years in prison, according to the BBC.

According to the report, the swap was in exchange for five American oil executives. Those Americans were “exchanged for two of Mr Maduro’s wife’s nephews, who were serving 18-year sentences in the US on drug charges,” the officials told the BBC. Maduro’s nephews were convicted under the Trump administration and the Venezuelan government claims that they were “unjustly” jailed in the United States.

In a statement from the White House Saturday, Biden said the American’s were  “wrongfully detained.”  He said the American’s  would soon be reunited with their relatives, according to reports.

“Today, we celebrate that seven families will be whole once more. To all the families who are still suffering and separated from their loved ones who are wrongfully detained – know that we remain dedicated to securing their release,” the Biden statement added.

Meanwhile, 13 Republican members of Congress sent a letter to Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas, requesting more information on “the intelligence report” that alleges Maduro is emptying his prisons and allowing them to head to the United States in the caravans that crossing the porous border.

The letter states that the report warns Border Patrol agents to be on the look-out for “violent criminals from Venezuela among the migrant caravans heading towards the U.S.-Mexico border.”

“It has been widely reported that the Venezuelan regime, under the control of Nicolás Maduro Moros, is deliberately releasing violent prisoners early, including inmates convicted of ‘murder, rape, and extortion,’ and pushing them to join caravans heading to the United States,” the letter states.

You can follow Sara A. Carter on Twitter @SaraCarterDC.

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