There are two more presidential debates left before Election Day, but now, after the debacle of the first debate — 90 minutes dominated by insults, attacks and interruptions by President Trump — everything seems up in the air.
The Commission on Presidential Debates, whose members were frustrated that its marquee event was widely viewed as a failure, announced that it would propose a new format before Mr. Trump and Joseph R. Biden Jr. meet for their second debate on Oct. 15.
That idea was immediately rejected by Mr. Trump’s campaign. “Joe Biden is trying to work the refs,” said Tim Murtaugh, the communications director for the Trump campaign. “They shouldn’t be moving the goal posts and changing the rules in the middle of the game.”
In 2016, Mr. Trump often used the threat of withdrawing from debates to inject an element of uncertainty into the process, especially when he was