Debate Bingo and Other Essentials for the Third Presidential Debate

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Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton, the 2016 Republican and Democratic presidential nominees (Wikipedia)

Missed the first two presidential debates?

Don't fret. There's still one more to go, and plenty of mud left to sling.

Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton face off again on Wednesday night at the University of Nevada in Las Vegas (UNLV). Their third and final debate runs 90 minutes, commercial-free  (starting at 6 p.m. E.T.), and will be split into six 15-minute segments. Both candidates will be given two minutes to respond to questions and follow-up opportunity to respond to their opponent.

The debate will be hosted by Chris Wallace, the anchor of Fox News Sunday, whose questions are expected to address topics ranging from immigration, the Supreme Court, the economy and foreign policy.

A record 84 million viewers tuned into the first debate on Sept. 26. Viewership decreased but remained impressively high for the second debate on Oct. 9, a town hall-style format that included  questions asked by undecided voters in the audience.  Typically, the third presidential debate draws less attention than the first two. But this election is anything but typical, and the final candidate will likely attract an impressive number of eyes.

Some debate history


The first-ever televised presidential debate didn't happen until 1960. Candidates Richard Nixon and John F. Kennedy squared off -- just once -- in front of the camera, an event that proved extremely beneficial to the smoother and more youthful Kennedy, who went on to win the election against his stodgier opponent.

It took another 16 years for the next presidential debate to happen. In the 1976 election, when President Gerald Ford faced off against his Democratic challenger, Jimmy Carter, he made a notorious gaffe about the Soviet Union, an oversight that proved detrimental to his campaign.

Ever since, debates have become a fixture of U.S. presidential elections. It's now standard protocol for candidates to face off three times in the grueling months leading up to Election Day, providing Americans with a rare, unscripted glimpse of their personalities and how they handle themselves under pressure.

For more on the debate system and full-length videos and transcripts of past debates, go to the Commission on Presidential Debates.