No handshakes, limited audience: COVID shapes final Trump-Biden debate talks

The two sides have decided to forego the traditional pre-debate handshake in light of the virus, according to a person with direct knowledge of the negotiations. They also won’t do an elbow-bump, a coronavirus-era handshake substitute which both campaigns saw as awkward.

Neither Trump nor Biden nor the debate moderator, Fox News host Chris Wallace, will wear masks.

And unlike past presidential debates, there will be a limited audience of only 75 to 80 people, all of whom will be tested prior to attending the debate, which will be held on the campus of the Cleveland Clinic and Case Western Reserve University.

In another concession to the pandemic, there will not be a post-debate spin room, either. Rather, media outlets will have to schedule interviews with surrogates for the campaigns.