‘This Is The Entire Election’: Van Jones Says If Biden ‘Messes Up’ During Debate, ‘It’s Game Over’


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Jason Cohen Contributor
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CNN’s Van Jones said on Thursday that if President Joe Biden makes a misstep during the upcoming presidential debate, then the election is “over.”

CNN on Saturday finalized the rules and format for the 90-minute June 27 Atlanta debate between Biden and former President Donald Trump, which consists of muting microphones and prohibiting a live studio audience. Jones on “CNN Newsroom” said everyone will be tuning into the debate because of how important the debate is, and a strong Biden performance is essential for him to secure reelection. (RELATED: ‘Great News’: Sean Hannity Says Biden’s Debate Rules ‘Extraordinarily Favorable’ For Trump)


“This is the entire election, as far as I‘m concerned,” Jones said. “The entire world will be watching. If you are a carbon-based life form, you’re going to be watching. If you’ve got a functioning brain stem, you’re going to be watching, because if Biden goes out there and messes up, it’s game over. If he walks out there and a week later, he’s lower in the polls, it’s panic in the party.”

“But if he goes in there and he can handle himself against Donald Trump, a runaway train, a locomotive, a raging bull, then this guy deserves another shot to be president because that is tough,” he continued. “You couldn’t do it. I couldn’t do it. If you can stand toe-to-toe with a runaway train like Donald Trump for an hour-and-a-half, you are fit to be president, period. Point-blank. This is the whole presidency in a bottle in a week.”

Former CNN political analyst Chris Cillizza on Monday asserted that silencing the microphones during the debate “clearly benefits Biden” as it strips the former president’s potential strategy of rattling his opponent. He also said the two commercial breaks scheduled during the debate will boost Biden as they offer him a breather to “regroup,” and that the lack of a studio audience helps the president as Trump supporters are louder and likely to cheer and boo the candidates.

The one rule Cillizza said helps the former president is that the candidates won’t be permitted to have pre-written notes, as Biden “struggles a little bit more when it comes to extemporaneous speaking” and could seem a bit “lost.” Former Obama adviser and MSNBC contributor Jennifer Palmieri on Monday said she was “surprised” Trump accepted the debate because the rules vastly seem to benefit his opponent.

“Biden’s got two things working against him,” Jones also said. “One is the momentum is not there with them, but also he‘s got a full-time job. All Trump’s got to do is sit up in court, not fall asleep and then go out there and say mean stuff about Biden. When you have a full-time job as demanding as a presidency and then have to turn on a dime and spend an hour-and-a-half arguing with somebody who has no responsibilities, that is a tough mental turn for anybody, even a young guy like Obama. So we’re going to see, but if Biden pulls that off, I think it will be impressive for that narrow slice of people who haven’t already made up their mind.”

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