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Photo: Jim Watson, Saul Loeb/AFP via Getty Images

President Trump suggested Thursday that he'll resist any moves that could cut off candidates' microphones in the next debate if he continues to talk over his opponent and the moderator.

  • "Why would I allow the Debate Commission to change the rules for the second and third Debates when I easily won last time?" he tweeted.

The big picture: White House and campaign officials insist Trump is still committed to two remaining debates, despite the fallout from Tuesday, including poor reviews and discussions of new guardrails.

  • Trump campaign communications director Tim Murtaugh tells Axios they "will absolutely oppose" the Commission's proposed changes, but offered no specifics.
  • The call for changes came after Trump received intense criticism, including from his own advisers, about how much he interrupted Joe Biden.

What they're saying:

  • Earlier Thursday, White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany told reporters that Trump "wants to debate. He plans on being at the debate, but wants the rules to be fair and wants a fair exchange and doesn't want rules that cover for a certain candidate's inability to perform."
  • Murtaugh told Axios that the Biden campaign is "running to the commission to try to get the rules changed" because "their guy had a lousy performance."
  • He added that the debate commission "is heavily partisan and filled with plenty of anti-Trump voices. It’s been obvious from the beginning that the commission is doing Joe Biden’s bidding."

The other side: “Joe Biden is looking forward to the Town Hall in Miami. He'll be focused on answering questions from the voters there, under whatever set of rules the Commission develops to try to contain Donald Trump's behavior," Biden's deputy campaign manager Kate Bedingfield said.

What's next: The next presidential debate is in two weeks, and a lot can change between now and then.

  • The first vice presidential debate between Vice President Mike Pence and Sen. Kamala Harris takes place next Wednesday.

Go deeper

Updated Jan 8, 2021 - Politics & Policy

Trump will skip Biden inauguration

Trump and Biden shake hands at Trump's 2017 inauguration. Photo: Jonathan Newton /The Washington Post via Getty Images

President Trump tweeted on Friday that he will not be attending President-elect Joe Biden's inauguration on Jan. 20.

Why it matters: It's a break from tradition that comes as Trump faces massive backlash over the storming of the U.S. Capitol by a mob of his supporters.

House expected to introduce articles of impeachment next week

Speaker Pelosi. Photo: Samuel Corum/Getty Images

The House is planning to introduce articles of impeachment against President Trump as early as Monday, several sources familiar with the Democrats' plans tell Axios.

What they're saying: House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said in a statement Friday night that if Trump doesn't immediately resign: "I have instructed the Rules Committee to be prepared to move forward with Congressman Jamie Raskin’s 25th Amendment legislation and a motion for impeachment."

Updated 36 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

  1. Health: Most vulnerable Americans aren't getting enough vaccine information — Fauci says Trump administration's lack of facts on COVID "very likely" cost lives.
  2. Education: Schools face an uphill battle to reopen during the pandemic.
  3. Vaccine: Florida requiring proof of residency to get vaccine — CDC extends interval between vaccine doses for exceptional cases.
  4. World: Hong Kong puts tens of thousands on lockdown as cases surge — Pfizer to supply 40 million vaccine doses to lower-income countries — Brazil begins distributing AstraZeneca vaccine.
  5. Sports: 2021 Tokyo Olympics hang in the balance.
  6. 🎧 Podcast: Carbon Health's CEO on unsticking the vaccine bottleneck.

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