Who’s moderating the first presidential debate? Trump wasted no time attacking him
The first debate is rapidly approaching, and all eyes are on the man who will be leading the historically groundbreaking event as moderator of the first 2016 presidential debate: Lester Holt. Sure, Holt’s star isn’t quite as big as Anderson freaking Cooper’s, but he’s no small deal in the world of broadcast journalism. Let’s just hope he can keep the screaming and talking over one another to a minimum, as well as actually get substantive answers out of both candidates.
Trump has already set to work circulating misleading facts about Holt, like what the journalist’s party preferences and biases are, probably laying the groundwork for a storm of angry tweets calling Holt a biased bully Trump will inevitably post after the debate, followed by a self-congratulatory “but everyone who watched says I’m the winner, even though I was treated unfairly” — you know the deal by now.
It’s important to not be misled. First things first, Holt is not a Democrat, as Trump alleged all of this year’s moderators are in an interview with Bill O’Reilly on Fox News earlier this week. This might have something to do with why Trump is calling for moderator-less debates and has expressed hope that Holt won’t “fact-check” as moderator on Monday. Fact-checking is, after all, the enemy when you have no numbers or facts to back up your lies.
Time magazine has pointed out that Holt has been a registered Republican in the state of New York since 2003. If anything, Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton is the one who should be upset, yet she’s yet to say a word about Holt.
While Trump has claimed the debates are rigged and alleged Holt will be biased against him as a Democrat (which Holt isn’t), last week he was singing Holt’s praises. “I think Lester Holt will be very fair, but a lot of people will be watching to see if that’s true,” Trump said at a rally Thursday in North Carolina. The debate hasn’t even happened yet and the two already have a complicated relationship.
Holt became the NBC Nightly News host after Brian Williams was removed for multiple lies he was caught telling as an anchor. But according to Holt, the two “are good” and still maintain a friendly relationship.
The first presidential debate will air this Monday from 9-10:30 p.m. ET on just about every TV news station, and can be livestreamed on Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube.