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First Presidential Debate Picks: DraftKings Sportsbook Pool Predictions September 29

Steve Buchanan breaks down the First Presidential Debate Pool on DraftKings Sportsbook, which locks at 9 p.m. ET on Tuesday, Sept. 29.

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When the candidates walk onto the stage, how will they first greet each other?

  • Handshake, Fist bump, Elbow bump, No touching

I’m quite confident about this one. Elbow bump is going to be my guess. Earlier this month, Joe Biden and Vice President Mike Pence ran into each other at the September 11th Memorial and gave each other an elbow bump. Granted, you can’t see it on camera because some dope got in the way of the shot, but Biden did so with others in Pence’s party. It’s also extremely well documented that President Trump is a huge germaphobe, so a handshake would seem extremely unlikely in this spot, especially with so many eyes expected for this event. It would send a really strange message in a time of social distancing to see these powerful figures shaking hands.

Choice: Elbow Bump


Who will be the first to speak?

  • Donald Trump or Joe Biden

This is a tough one. Before the debates begin, a coin toss takes place to determine who will answer the first question. I made sure this was the case by going back to the first debate between then president Barack Obama and the Republican candidate Mitt Romney. Obama won the coin toss, so he was tasked with answering first to open the debate. So, I mean, let’s keep up the trend here and let me flip a coin to determine answer. I’m going to give Biden heads and Trump tails.

Okay, here I go...

Heads wins. Biden is the answer.

Choice: Joe Biden


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Who will say the word “China” first?

  • Donald Trump, Joe Biden, Neither will say “China”

Okay, this question made me laugh. Kudos to whomever came up with this one.

Topics for the debate have already been released and, as you’d imagine, COVID-19 is one of them. So with that in mind, we can immediately cross off “neither will say China” as an answer. My choice here is no doubt Trump, who loves to talk about China to begin with.

On a serious note, though, even as recently as this week, Trump, in his speech to the United Nations General Assembly, called on them to hold China accountable for “unleashing” the coronavirus. I also imagine this topic could be the first to be talked about, so this could be an early victory.

Even if COVID-19 isn’t among the first topics, Trump’s trade deal with China and the process of trying to ban the TikTok app could both be spoken about, as well. I would honestly be shocked if Biden stole the win on this one, since Trump is so heavily involved with China.

Choice: Donald Trump


Which of these listed former candidates will be mentioned first by either Trump or Biden by name?

  • Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren, Pete Buttigieg, Michael Bloomberg, Amy Klobuchar, None

The one thing all of these candidates have in common is they’re all Democrats, so naturally, they’ve endorsed Biden since either dropping out or suspending their campaign. Two names stick out to me to get name dropped during this debate: Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren.

Once upon a time, both former candidates were the favorite to win the nomination during this process. Warren was looked upon as the favorite in the very early going, but once the debates got going, Warren quickly fizzled out. Sanders was also a strong candidate to win the nomination, but Super Tuesday shifted that so quickly, as Biden was victorious in 10 of the 14 states, including an unexpected win in the delegate rich state of Texas.

Trump has had a soft spot for “Crazy Bernie” as he’s called him all throughout the Democratic primaries. Trump was a big believer that the Democrat Nomination was “rigged” and that there was very little that he (Sanders) could do about it. Sanders hasn’t exactly replied with heartfelt thanks toward Trump and continues to back his party. With this in mind, I think Sanders will be brought up at some point, likely by Trump.

Choice: Bernie Sanders


Who will be mentioned first by name by either candidate?

  • Mike Pence, Kamala Harris, Neither

I have no doubt that Biden will be trying to drive home the fact that Harris is his running mate, as it would mark the first female vice president in American history. However, I think we could hear about Pence first, especially if COVID-19 is the first topic that is spoken about. Pence leads the White House Coronavirus Task Force, a position he began on February 26th. Trump speaking about his role or his response would be an easy way to get the win for this question. This one will be tight and it may come down to who ends up speaking first, which if my coin toss prediction correct, would be Biden.

Choice: Mike Pence


Who will be mentioned first by either candidate?

  • Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama, Neither

Biden praises Obama. Trump trashes Obama. This is 100% Obama.

Choice: Barack Obama


Who will mention Dr. Anthony Fauci first?

  • Donald Trump, Joe Biden, Neither

With the strained relationship between Fauci and Trump, this could be a good opportunity for Biden to first bring the doctor up. Back in July, Trump was quoted as saying Fauci — who is considered one of the nation’s top infectious disease experts — he “made a lot of mistakes.” In that same timespan, Fauci had also said that he had not briefed the President on COVID-19 in two months.

No shock here, but Biden has the complete opposite feelings about Fauci and tweeted this soon after the prior quote from Trump came out.

“If I’m elected, I’ll immediately reach out to Dr. Fauci and ask him to continue his incredible service to our country.”

I would not be surprised for Biden to bring up Fauci first, as not only a way to try and get Trump riled up, but to show his support for battling COVID-19.

Choice: Joe Biden


How many of his children will Donald Trump mention by name during the debate.

  • 0, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5

This might be the toughest part of the pool. We truly have nothing to go back and reference to try and come up with a good answer. Back when Trump and Hilary Clinton were debating, a member of the audience asked both candidates to mention something nice about one another. As you can see, they were pretty pissed about it.

However, they did it. Clinton went on to say she respected his children. Trump responded by saying it was a compliment, but referred to them as “his children,” not by name. I know this is a pretty weak reference but truly, I’m all ears if you have something better. I’m going to give you two answers that I think are viable and they are either “0” or “4.” Zero may be the safest answer, as I’m having trouble finding a reason why they would come up by name. Four is the other answer, as he’d name them for helping out his campaign; however, he would be leaving out his youngest, Barron Trump, who is only 14.

Choice: 0 or 4

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