U.S. President Donald Trump participates in the first presidential debate against Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden at the Health Education Campus of Case Western Reserve University on September 29, 2020 in Cleveland, Ohio. This is the first of three planned debates between the two candidates in the lead up to the election on November 3. (Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images
Tuesday night, President Donald Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden appeared for the first presidential debate, offering voters their first side-by-side comparison of the candidates.
Little was said about what either candidate would do if elected; at one point, Biden’s attempts to explain his health care plan were drowned out by Trump’s persistent interruptions about Biden’s Democratic primary opponents.
Instead, the presidential nominees traded a dizzying array of accusations and falsehoods. Our partners at PolitiFact unpacked a number of them for you in their wide-ranging debate night fact check.
Here are some health care highlights:
Trump: “I’m getting [insulin] so cheap it’s like water.”Rating: Mostly False
Trump signed an executive order on insulin at the end of July, but the scope was limited. It targeted a select group of health care providers that represent fewer than 2% of the relevant outlets for insulin. Between 2017 and 2018, insulin prices for seniors rose.
“The truth is that patients who need drugs like insulin are having a hard time affording them, particularly for the many who are now uninsured,” said Vanderbilt Medical Center’s Stacie Dusetzina.
Biden: “The president has no plan” for the coronavirus pandemic. Needs context
The Trump administration has announced a plan for distributing vaccines. The plan shows that the federal government aims to make the two-dose vaccine free of cost, for instance.
However, public health experts have said Trump and his administration did not have a plan to combat the pandemic or a national testing plan.
Biden: Trump suggested that “maybe you could inject some bleach in your arm and that would take care of [the coronavirus].” Needs context
Trump did not explicitly suggest that people inject bleach into their arms. He did express interest in exploring whether disinfectants could be applied to the site of a coronavirus infection. The comment came after an administration official presented a study that found sun exposure and cleaning agents like bleach could kill the virus when it lingers on surfaces.
Trump said at the time: “And then I see the disinfectant, where it knocks it out in one minute. And is there a way we can do something like that, by injection inside or almost a cleaning, because you see it gets in the lungs and it does a tremendous number on the lungs, so it’d be interesting to check that, so that you’re going to have to use medical doctors with, but it sounds interesting to me.”
During the debate Tuesday, Trump discounted his previous remarks as “sarcastic.”
Trump: Biden “wants to shut down the country.” Needs context
In an interview with CBS News, Biden