'Game Over': CNN's Van Jones says if Biden fails on debate stage it will tank the campaign

"This is the whole presidency in a bottle this week."

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Katie Daviscourt Seattle WA
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Political commentator Van Jones said the upcoming presidential debate is a make-it-or-break-it moment for President Joe Biden, predicting a poor performance against former President Trump would be "game over" for his campaign. 

Jones made the comments while speaking to CNN's Jim Acosta on Thursday. He said that if Biden messes up on stage, the incumbent's hopes of winning in November would be tarnished for good, leaving the Democratic Party in "panic" mode. 

"This is the entire election, as far as I'm concerned. The entire world will be watching," said Jones. "If you are a carbon-based life form, you're going to be watching. If you've got a functioning brain stem, you're going to be watching." 

"If Biden goes out there and messes up, it's game over. If he walks out there, and a week later he's lower in the polls, it's panic in the party,"  he continued. "But if he goes in there and he can handle himself against Donald Trump - a runaway train, a locomotive, a raging bull - then this guy deserves another shot to be president because that is tough." 

Biden and Trump will faceoff next week for the first presidential debate hosted by CNN in Atlanta, Georgia. The network enacted a strict set of debate rules such as no studio audience, muted microphones, and no opening statements. Candidates will be allotted two minutes for each answer, one minute for rebuttals and one for responses to the rebuttals. The debate will be 90 minutes. 

Jones said taking on former President Trump is a challenging endeavor and a potential Biden debate win would boost the Democrat's campaign. 

"If you can stand toe-to-toe with a runaway train like Donald Trump for an hour and a half, you are fit to be president, period, point-blank," said Jones. "This is the whole presidency in a bottle this week." 

A coin toss determined that President Trump will get to deliver his closing arguments after Biden, meaning he will get to have the final word of the night. The Biden campaign, which won the coin toss, selected to have President Biden stand behind the right podium, meaning he would appear on the right side of television screens. 

Independent presidential candidate Robert F. Kennedy Jr. and Green Party candidate Jill Stein did not meet the requirements to appear on the debate stage. 

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