Protesters Gather in Cleveland

Two 3rd-party candidates are protesting exclusion
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 29, 2020 7:08 PM CDT
Protesters Gather in Cleveland
Joe Biden arrives at Cleveland Airport in Cleveland, Tuesday, Sept. 29, 2020, for the first presidential debate against President Donald Trump.   (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

Hundreds of protesters gathered in Cleveland Tuesday ahead of the first debate between President Trump and Joe Biden—including two candidates protesting the fact that they weren't invited. Green Party presidential nominee Howie Hawkins was due to address a gathering of left-wing activists, while Libertarian nominee Jo Jorgensen has also traveled to Cleveland and is expected to speak at an outdoor event, the Washington Post reports. No third-party candidate has reached the 15% polling threshold to take part in a presidential debate since Ross Perot in 1992.

Police kept a low profile Tuesday afternoon as around 500 anti-Trump marchers gathered near the debate venue, a Cleveland Clinic building at Case Western Reserve University, reports. Outside the building, a street separated pro-Trump and pro-Biden protesters. Presidential debates generally draw thousands of staffers, guests, and media workers, but the pandemic has made this one very different, reports the AP. The 100 or so people allowed inside the venue will be required to maintain social distancing and wear masks, although Biden and Trump are exempted. The White House says each campaign received 20 tickets to distribute to guests, and Trump's will include his four adult children and first lady Melania Trump. (More presidential debate stories.)

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