2020 election live updates: Trump, Biden answer to voters at town halls, Trump tweets satirical news site

At separate town hall events Thursday, the two people vying for the presidency answered questions from voters, though not in the intended debate format. Donald Trump and Joe Biden were in different states, in front of different crowds and on competing television channels  

Trump refused to condemn QAnon and didn’t deny having $400 million in debt during his NBC event while Biden gave a vague answer on court packing and was pressed by an African American voter on how he would turn out the Black vote live on ABC. 

With just 18 days to before Election Day, the two campaigns are waging ferocious advertising campaigns in a half-dozen battleground states with Florida, Arizona and Pennsylvania the crown jewels that could decide the race.

The latest: 

  • Town halls: Missed Thursday’s dueling town halls?: Here are our takeaways
  • Compare/contrast: You saw how Trump and Biden stacked up on the town hall stage, what about the international stage? 
  • Sasse slams Trump: Republican Sen. Ben Sasse slammed President Donald Trump during a call with constituents this week, saying he “kisses dictators’ butts” and has “flirted with white supremacists.”
  • Where are the candidates?: President Donald Trump campaigns in Florida and Georgia today, while Democrat Joe Biden speaks with voters in Michigan. Vice President Mike Pence is in North Carolina while Sen. Kamala Harris, the Democratic vice presidential nominee, takes part in a virtual fundraiser. 

📆 18 days until Election Day, six days until the final presidential debate, 96 days until Inauguration Day, 78 days left in 2020.

🗳️ Voting: See USA TODAY’s Voter Guide for information on registering to votewhen your state begins voting and what the candidates think about the issues

We will update this article throughout the day. You can follow all of USA TODAY’s politics reporters on Twitter or subscribe to our daily On Politics newsletter

Trump retweets story from satirical news site

President Donald Trump, who likes to denounce alleged “fake news,” retweeted a piece of satire Friday about Twitter shutting down over reporting on Joe Biden.

Retweeting a link entitled “Twitter Shuts Down Entire Network To Slow Spread Of Negative Biden News” – which never happened –Trump said: “Wow, this has never been done in history. This includes his really bad interview last night. Why is Twitter doing this. Bringing more attention to Sleepy Joe & Big T.”

Twitter did not do that.

The story was the from the Babylon Bee, a satirical news site. The motto on the Bee’s Twitter page says it all: “Fake news you can trust.”

– David Jackson 

Biden again says he doesn’t want to ban fracking

Democratic presidential nominee and former vice president Joe Biden again said he does not want to ban fracking during an ABC town hall Thursday night, adding, though, that “it has to be managed very, very well.”

Biden was responding to a question from Pittsburgh resident Michele Ellison, identified as a Republican who has voted for Democrats, who asked him about fracking and said that the method for drilling for natural gas has sickened residents and killed wildlife in southwestern Pennsylvania.

Biden, who came to Pittsburgh in late August and said he did not want to ban fracking, reiterated that stance, but said methane emissions and water pollution must be controlled. He then transitioned to arguing that “the future rests in renewable energy,” such as wind and solar.

– J.D. Prose

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