Top trending moments from Biden-Trump debate: Golf handicaps, age argument, a Biden freeze

Top trending moments from Biden-Trump debate: Golf handicaps, age argument, a Biden freeze


Didn’t watch the presidential debate last night? There’s no doubt you’ve heard about it, even if you chose not to tune in to watch current President Joe Biden and former President Donald Trump duke it out in the first faceoff of the 2024 election year.

If you haven’t caught up via a morning show recap or lengthy fact check, you’ve likely still seen the many video clips, snarky posts and memes circling like wildfire. The debate, which has raised more questions for some and reg flags for others, was chockfull of notable, quotable moments – for better or worse.

From a back-and-forth about golf scores to a bevy of personal insults, the candidates managed to incorporate a heaping serving of chaos into their discussions of hot-button issues like the economy, the border, abortion, immigration and, well, their competency to service.

Here are some of the stand-out moments you might have missed.

Presidential debate fact check: What Trump, Biden got right (and wrong)

Bizarre golf exchange


Biden Trump debate: Candidates argue over golf.

An argument about golf was one of the few direct exchanges between the two candidates during the CNN presidential debate.

In a moment everyone has heard about, the presidential candidates were derailed by a back-and-forth over golf and whose game is better.

In a conversation about competency at an older age, Trump responded by bragging about the alleged cognitive tests he’s passed and his golf game, saying he’d recently won two club championships.

“He challenged me to a golf match,” Trump said of Biden. “He can’t hit a ball 50 yards.”

“I’d be happy to have a driving contest with him,” Biden responded, saying he had accomplished a handicap of six during his vice presidency. “I’m happy to play golf with you if you carry your own bag. Think you can do it?”

“That’s the biggest lie, that he’s a six handicap, of all,” Trump shot back. Biden then accused Trump of having a handicap of eight, to which the former president responded. “I’ve seen your swing. I know your swing.”

The exchange ended with both men accusing the other of acting childish.

The Biden freeze

Social media quickly took to what is being called the “Biden freeze,” making several posts and memes about the president stumbling on his words.

The big “freeze moment” came when Biden was discussing healthcare, the economy and the high debt levels under Trump’s administration. He mentioned increasing taxes on billionaires but his response then became briefly meandering, concluding with “if we finally beat Medicare” after a pause.

‘Three years younger and a lot less competent’: The great age debate


Biden, Trump brush off age concerns at CNN Presidential Debate

President Joe Biden and former President Donald Trump respond to concerns over their ages in the CNN Presidential Debate.

Concerns over the ages of the candidates have been a major talking point this election season − whether their answers during the debate assuaged or intensified these concerns is up to the viewer, but they were asked about their cognitive abilities head-on.

“I spent half my career being criticized for being the youngest person in politics,” Biden said, referring to his election to the U.S. Senate at age 30, “…now I’m the oldest. This guy is three years younger and a lot less competent.”

“I took two tests, cognitive tests, I aced them, both of them, as you know,” Trump responded. “I’d like to see him take on, just one, a real easy one, like go through the first five questions, you couldn’t do it,” he said of Biden.

‘Losers and suckers’


Joe Biden slams Donald Trump during debate for ‘losers and suckers’

President Joe Biden, former President Donald Trump exchanged blows during the CNN Presidential Debate. Each claiming the other failed the military.

During an exchange in which Trump and Biden each accused the other of failing veterans, Trump claimed that veterans and soldiers “can’t stand this guy” about Biden. “And they like me more than just about any of them,” he said.

Biden shot back by referring to his own late son, Joseph “Beau” Biden, who served in the Army National Guard as a major and deployed to Iraq before dying of brain cancer in 2015 at 46 years old. He also referred to an Atlantic report from 2020 in which anonymous sources said Trump had called soldiers that died in battles “suckers and losers.” Trump has denied this report since its release, though other news outlets have corroborated it.

“I went to the WWI cemetery he refused to go to,” Biden said, referring to Trump. “He was standing with his four-star general and he told me ‘I don’t want to go in there because they’re a bunch of losers and suckers.’ My son was not a loser, he was not a sucker, you’re the sucker, you’re the loser.”

Trump denies Jan 6. involvement


Former President Trump accepts no blame for Jan 6. attack

During CNN’s Presidential debate, President Biden argued that the former president “encouraged” the January 6th attack.

When asked what he would say to voters who believe he violated his constitutional oath via the actions leading up to, on and following the January 6, 2021, insurrection at the U.S. Capitol, Trump denied any involvement.

“Well I didn’t say that to anybody, I said peacefully and patriotically,” said Trump, referring to his alleged encouragement, or lack thereof, of Jan. 6 insurrectionists.

“He encouraged those folks,” Biden insisted, saying that he watched Trump ignore other politicians and his own team members for “three hours” as they “begged” him to do something on the day. “Instead he talked about these people being patriots….he says he’ll now forgive them for what they’ve done,” he said, referring to Trump’s past promises to pardon a “large portion” of Jan. 6 rioters.

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