‘They both hate each other’: Roanoke County voters voice opinions on presidential debate

‘This was more of a three-ring circus than a source of information’

Voters took the energy from the presidential debate to their ballots in Roanoke County.

ROANOKE COUNTY, Va. – Tuesday night’s presidential debate remained a hot topic the day after, but some people took their thoughts straight to the polls.

Hundreds of voters lined up in Roanoke County on Wednesday to cast their votes early. Many had strong opinions on the first clash between President Donald Trump and Joe Biden.

Trump supporter Gloria Bailey hoped the candidates would focus more on the issues and less on insults.

“What I took away from it? They both hate each other. You know that," Bailey said. “Biden is just for Biden, and I have seen Trump do for the people.”

Meanwhile, Biden voter Jessica Hilbish said she could not finish watching the debate due to Trump’s behavior towards Biden and moderator Chris Wallace.

“Trump had a chance to show himself as a leader, and he showed himself as a clown,” Hilbish said. “To be considered a participant in good faith, you need to follow the rules, or at least try to. I didn’t see that.”

The election is nearly a month away, and Roanoke County Election Director Anna Cloeter expects voter turnout to remain high going into November.

“We’re closing in on 5,000 people in-person so far," Cloeter said. "Since we only had 5,000 people total participate in absentee voting in 2016, it’s pretty incredible.”

However, it remains to be seen whether voters will tune in to any future presidential debates this election season.

“This was more of a three-ring circus than any kind of information source,” Hilbish said.

“Oh yeah, I’m going to continue to watch," Bailey said. "It’s very interesting.”