By Ty Russell

MIAMI (CBSMiami) – President Donald Trump and Democratic challenger Joe Biden are still fighting for votes in the Sunshine State. But instead of doing that on a Miami debate stage Thursday night, they will be doing it via dueling town halls.

Biden will be in Philadelphia while President Trump will be at the Perez Art Museum in downtown Miami.

“The original debate was bringing in undecided voters. I doubt Trump in a town hall is going to bring in undecided voters,” said Charles Zelden, a political science expert with Nova Southeastern University. “All Biden has to do is hang onto the people who say are going to vote for him.”

The town-hall-style debate in Miami was scrapped because President Trump refused to participate in a virtual format after contracting COVID.

Former Vice President Joe Biden then committed to his own town hall.

“Biden seems to be up nationally by over 10 points with seniors. A little less in Florida, but still up,” Zelden said.

Zelden said Biden is doing well among seniors and Central Florida Puerto Ricans, but he needs Obama-era Black support.

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Trump is doing well among Cubans and Venezuelans, but he is down in national polls. He’s also either even or slightly down in swing states, including Florida.

“Florida being Florida, you never know until the last vote is counted,” Zelden said.

Biden made two stops in Broward Tuesday to rally seniors and minorities to vote.


But the Trump campaign is putting up a fight for Florida.

A boat parade in North Miami is scheduled Thursday morning.

Later in the day, Vice President Mike Pence is meeting with people in the Jewish community in Miami Gardens.

During the late afternoon, the president’s son, Eric Trump, is holding an Evangelicals for Trump rally in Southwest Ranches.

Finally, the president has his town hall at the same time as Biden.

“It would be better if they were sequential. One at 8 to 9 and the other one from 9 to 10, even in different networks,” Zelden said.

The president was in Sanford Monday and will be in Ocala Friday.

Ty Russell