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Large debate watching parties canceled due to pandemic

Voters react to rowdy debate without the usual viewing parties

SANTA BARBARA, Calif. --Voters didn't have the usual watch parties due to the pandemic.

But some people did watch with small groups.

Denise Spangler Adams said she watched with a diverse group of people at a home in Montecito.

"The party went great until the part about tax code, the candidates were both speaking over each other, discussions started to be sidelined, where I was people, people talking among themselves how rude the candidates were and that Chris Wallace had lost control of the meeting," said Adams.

She said people mentioned voting the party platforms and policy rather than the men debating.

"The host disbanded the party because he said everybody was too rude, nobody could hear anything, go home and watch the rest of it, which I did," said, Adams.

Santa Barbara GOP Chairwoman Bobbi McGinnis watched from home.

She said the president came out like a fighter.

"It felt more like a boxing match than it did a debate, but that is Trump's style. I do think there are very important points that were made about the economy, COVID, and I do feel that Joe Biden, the way he is speaking, is embracing the radical agendas."

Trump delegate Greg Gandrud said, "I think President Trump made a confident, commanding, and compelling case for his reelection while taking Biden to task for supporting radical policies that would raise taxes, destroy jobs and make our communities less safe."

The Organizing Director of the Santa Barbara Democratic Party called it another kind of fight.

Spencer Brandt said, "This debate tonight makes one thing very clear, this election is a fight for the soul of our country. I urge voters to cast their ballot for Vice President Joe Biden. We need a leader in the White House not a bully."

Democratic Party activist Ethan Bertrand said, "Rather than taking seriously the concerns of the American people about systemic racism and the COVID19 response, the President decided to deflect the important questions on the minds of the American people."

He is convinced young people will vote in November.

The President of UCSB Campus Democrats Leilanie Rubinstein said "I think tonight's debate really emphasized how critical this election is for the future of our democracy because of President Trump's refusal to denounce white supremisists or refusal to promise to accept the results of a free and fair election really show that we have to turn out, and overwhelmingly vote out Trump."

She said young voters have a responsibility to vote, "to make sure the next four years are not just another circus."

Democrat James Malis, 22, said, " I have seen high school debates that were significantly better than this."

"Biden simply didn't have the wit or the quick thinking tonight necessary to address all these lies," said student and democratic Kristian Munnikhuis.

It is not clear if the debate changed any minds, but voters will get a chance to see the Vice Presidential debate next week.

Article Topic Follows: Santa Barbara - South County

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Tracy Lehr

Tracy Lehr is a reporter and the weekend anchor for News Channel 3-12. To learn more about Tracy, click here


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