While NBC moderator Chuck Todd tried to ask the 10 candidates on stage about gun control at the start of the second hour of the debate, the presidential contenders couldn’t hear the question over chatter from the previous moderators’ microphones, which had been left on backstage.
Some of the moderators who had appeared in the first half of the debate could be heard saying, “I need to go to the restroom” and “Where’s my binder? Someone’s got my binder.”
— Sarah Reese Jones (@PoliticusSarah) June 27, 2019
The hot mics led to a back-and-forth confusion between the candidates, Todd and fellow moderator Rachel Maddow. Todd, appearing nervous but laughing, said, “We are hearing our colleagues’ audio, if the control room could turn off the mics of our previous moderators.”
The announcement of the hot mic issue led to laughter from both the audience and the candidates, though the moderators appeared caught off guard.
“We prepared for everything,” Maddow joked. “We did not prepare for this.”
Todd eventually announced the debate would head to a commercial break while the technical issue was fixed, though it wasn’t immediately clear what was going on. NBC did not immediately respond to a request for comment Wednesday night.
President Donald Trump, who was watching the debate, promptly tweeted after the technical issues, calling the network’s glitch “truly unprofessional.”
.@NBCNews and @MSNBC should be ashamed of themselves for having such a horrible technical breakdown in the middle of the debate. Truly unprofessional and only worthy of a FAKE NEWS Organization, which they are!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 27, 2019
NBC and MSNBC “should be ashamed of themselves for having such a horrible technical breakdown in the middle of the debate,” the president tweeted.
While the debate continued as normal following the glitch, Twitter had a hard time letting go of the humorous mistake in the sea of serious debate topics.
Democracy dies when you don’t turn off the mics of the prior moderators
— Preet Bharara (@PreetBharara) June 27, 2019
Klobuchar failed to show her binder experience and stand out when the moderator with the hot mic said, “Where’s my binder?”
— Evan Siegfried (@evansiegfried) June 27, 2019
The hot mics Elizabeth Warren pic.twitter.com/pMxYCM4lNs
— BuzzFeed News (@BuzzFeedNews) June 27, 2019
The real standout from tonight's #DemDebate is the technical difficulties
— Aaron Cynic (@aaroncynic) June 27, 2019 RELATED COVERAGE Here Is A Ranking Of Ties The 2020 Candidates Wore At The Debate The Left's Ideas Dominated The First Democratic Primary Debate Beto O'Rourke's First Debate Answer Is Already A 2020 Election Meme Download REAL LIFE. REAL NEWS. REAL VOICES. Help us tell more of the stories that matter from voices that too often remain unheard. Join HuffPost Plus