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Biden sees a 'dark winter' ahead on coronavirus, while Trump says the U.S. is 'rounding the turn'

President Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden disagreed sharply during Thursday’s final presidential debate of 2020 about how the coronavirus pandemic would play out in the United States over the winter.

Trump was asked about his assertion that America was “rounding the turn” on the pandemic and that a vaccine for COVID-19 would be ready in a matter of weeks, in the face of less optimistic estimates from members of his own administration and the companies currently working to produce one.

“I think my timeline is going to be more accurate,” Trump said at Belmont University in Nashville, Tenn. “I don’t know that they’re counting on the military the way I do, but we have our generals lined up, one in particular, that’s the head of logistics and this is a very easy distribution. He’s ready to go, as soon as we have the vaccine and we expect to have a hundred million vials of the vaccine, he’s ready to go.”

Biden responded by questioning the president’s credibility on the issue. “This is the same fellow who told you this is going to end by Easter last time. This is the same fellow who told you that, ‘Don’t worry, we’re going to end this this summer,’” Trump said. “We’re about to enter a dark winter, a dark winter, and he has no clear plan and he has no prospects that there’s going to be a vaccine for the majority of the American people before the middle of next year.”

Trump, however, saw a much rosier situation.

“I don’t think we’re going to have a dark winter, at all. We’re opening up our country. We’ve learned and studied and understand the disease, which we didn’t at the beginning,” Trump said.

Trump has often assured the country that the pandemic is “going to go away by itself,” with or without a vaccine. The number of new COVID-19 cases and deaths have been rising in recent weeks, as Biden pointed out.

“Anyone who is responsible for that many deaths should not remain as president of the United States of America. We’re in a situation where there are a thousand deaths a day and there are over 70,000 new cases per day,” Biden said, adding, “The expectation is that we’ll have another 200,000 dead by the end of the year. Come on.”

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President Donald Trump and Democratic presidential candidate former Vice President Joe Biden during the first presidential debate Tuesday, Sept. 29, 2020, at Case Western University and Cleveland Clinic, in Cleveland, Ohio. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)

Moderator Chris Wallace of Fox News speaks as President Donald Trump and Democratic presidential candidate former Vice President Joe Biden participate in the first presidential debate Tuesday, Sept. 29, 2020, at Case Western University and Cleveland Clinic, in Cleveland. (Olivier Douliery/Pool vi AP)

President Donald Trump gestures while speaking during the first presidential debate Tuesday, Sept. 29, 2020, at Case Western University and Cleveland Clinic, in Cleveland, Ohio. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

Democratic presidential candidate former Vice President Joe Biden gestures while speaking during the first presidential debate Tuesday, Sept. 29, 2020, at Case Western University and Cleveland Clinic, in Cleveland, Ohio. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)

Moderator Chris Wallace of Fox News, center, gesturing during the first presidential debate between President Donald Trump, left, and Democratic presidential candidate former Vice President Joe Biden, right, Tuesday, Sept. 29, 2020, at Case Western University and Cleveland Clinic, in Cleveland, Ohio. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

President Donald Trump gestures while speaking during the first presidential debate Tuesday, Sept. 29, 2020, at Case Western University and Cleveland Clinic, in Cleveland, Ohio. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)

Democratic presidential candidate former Vice President Joe Biden gestures while speaking during the first presidential debate Tuesday, Sept. 29, 2020, at Case Western University and Cleveland Clinic, in Cleveland, Ohio. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)

President Donald Trump gestures while speaking during the first presidential debate Tuesday, Sept. 29, 2020, at Case Western University and Cleveland Clinic, in Cleveland, Ohio. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

US President Donald Trump and Democratic Presidential candidate and former US Vice President Joe Biden take part in the first presidential debate at Case Western Reserve University and Cleveland Clinic in Cleveland, Ohio, on September 29, 2020. (Photo by SAUL LOEB / AFP) (Photo by SAUL LOEB/AFP via Getty Images)

CLEVELAND, OHIO - SEPTEMBER 29: U.S. President Donald Trump participates in the first presidential debate against Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden at the Health Education Campus of Case Western Reserve University on September 29, 2020 in Cleveland, Ohio. This is the first of three planned debates between the two candidates in the lead up to the election on November 3. (Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images)

CLEVELAND, OHIO - SEPTEMBER 29: Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden participates in the first presidential debate against U.S. President Donald Trump at the Health Education Campus of Case Western Reserve University on September 29, 2020 in Cleveland, Ohio. This is the first of three planned debates between the two candidates in the lead up to the election on November 3. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)

CLEVELAND, OHIO - SEPTEMBER 29: Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden participates in the first presidential debate against U.S. President Donald Trump at the Health Education Campus of Case Western Reserve University on September 29, 2020 in Cleveland, Ohio. This is the first of three planned debates between the two candidates in the lead up to the election on November 3. (Photo by Morry Gash-Pool/Getty Images)

CLEVELAND, OHIO - SEPTEMBER 29: U.S. President Donald Trump participates in the first presidential debate against Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden at the Health Education Campus of Case Western Reserve University on September 29, 2020 in Cleveland, Ohio. This is the first of three planned debates between the two candidates in the lead up to the election on November 3. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)

Debate moderator and Fox News anchor Chris Wallace directs the first presidential debate at Case Western Reserve University and Cleveland Clinic in Cleveland, Ohio, on September 29, 2020. (Photo by Olivier Douliery / POOL / AFP) (Photo by OLIVIER DOULIERY/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)

President Donald Trump and Democratic presidential candidate former Vice President Joe Biden participate in the first presidential debate Tuesday, Sept. 29, 2020, at Case Western University and Cleveland Clinic, in Cleveland. (Olivier Douliery/Pool via AP)

President Donald Trump and first lady Melania Trump on stage at the end of the first presidential debate Tuesday, Sept. 29, 2020, at Case Western University and Cleveland Clinic, in Cleveland, Ohio. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

CLEVELAND, OHIO - SEPTEMBER 29: First lady Melania Trump stands with President Donald Trump as he looks at Democratic presidential candidate former Vice President Joe Biden as he is hugged by his wife Jill Biden during the first presidential debate at the Health Education Campus of Case Western Reserve University on September 29, 2020 in Cleveland, Ohio. This is the first of three planned debates between the two candidates in the lead up to the election on November 3. (Photo by Morry Gash-Pool/Getty Images)

President Donald Trump and Democratic presidential candidate former Vice President Joe Biden participate in the first presidential debate Tuesday, Sept. 29, 2020, at Case Western University and Cleveland Clinic, in Cleveland. (Olivier Douliery/Pool via AP)

Democratic presidential candidate former Vice President Joe Biden gestures while speaking during the first presidential debate Tuesday, Sept. 29, 2020, at Case Western University and Cleveland Clinic, in Cleveland, Ohio. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)

Democratic presidential candidate former Vice President Joe Biden and Jill Biden, lean in to talk to moderator Chris Wallace of Fox News at the conclusion of the first presidential debate Tuesday, Sept. 29, 2020, at Case Western University and Cleveland Clinic, in Cleveland, Ohio. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

President Donald Trump gestures while speaking during the first presidential debate Tuesday, Sept. 29, 2020, at Case Western University and Cleveland Clinic, in Cleveland, Ohio. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)

President Donald Trump walks away form the podium at the conclusion of the first presidential debate Tuesday, Sept. 29, 2020, at Case Western University and Cleveland Clinic, in Cleveland, Ohio. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

From l-r, first lady Melania Trump, President Donald Trump, Democratic presidential candidate former Vice President Joe Biden and Jill Biden, walk off stage at the conclusion of the first presidential debate Tuesday, Sept. 29, 2020, at Case Western University and Cleveland Clinic, in Cleveland, Ohio. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)

Ivanka Trump, the daughter of President Donald Trump, enter, walks in from l-r., Kimberly Guilfoyle, Lara Trump and Tiffany Trump, the daughter of President Donald Trump, fo the first presidential debate Tuesday, Sept. 29, 2020, at Case Western University and Cleveland Clinic, in Cleveland, Ohio. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)

White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows waits in his seat for the start of the first presidential debate Tuesday, Sept. 29, 2020, at Case Western University and Cleveland Clinic, in Cleveland, Ohio. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)

Guests wear face covering as the wait for the start of the first presidential debate, Tuesday, Sept. 29, 2020, at Case Western University and Cleveland Clinic, in Cleveland, Ohio. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

Democratic presidential candidate former Vice President Joe Biden speaking during the first presidential debate Tuesday, Sept. 29, 2020, at Case Western University and Cleveland Clinic, in Cleveland, Ohio. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)

President Donald Trump speaks during the first presidential debate with Democratic presidential candidate former Vice President Joe Biden Tuesday, Sept. 29, 2020, at Case Western University and Cleveland Clinic, in Cleveland. (Olivier Douliery/Pool vi AP)

President Donald Trump and Democratic presidential candidate former Vice President Joe Biden participate in the first presidential debate Tuesday, Sept. 29, 2020, at Case Western University and Cleveland Clinic, in Cleveland. (Olivier Douliery/Pool vi AP)

A face mask and debate program are left on the floor following the conclusion of the first presidential debate Tuesday, Sept. 29, 2020, at Case Western University and Cleveland Clinic, in Cleveland, Ohio. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)

President Donald Trump gestures while speaking during the second and final presidential debate Thursday, Oct. 22, 2020, at Belmont University in Nashville, Tenn. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)

Democratic presidential candidate former Vice President Joe Biden speaks during the second and final presidential debate Thursday, Oct. 22, 2020, at Belmont University in Nashville, Tenn. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

Moderator Kristen Welker of NBC News speaks before the second and final presidential debate Thursday, Oct. 22, 2020, at Belmont University in Nashville, Tenn. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

President Donald Trump gestures while speaking during the second and final presidential debate Thursday, Oct. 22, 2020, at Belmont University in Nashville, Tenn. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

President Donald Trump arriving for the second and final presidential debate Thursday, Oct. 22, 2020, at Belmont University in Nashville, Tenn. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)

Democratic presidential candidate former Vice President Joe Biden holds up his face mask during the second and final presidential debate Thursday, Oct. 22, 2020, at Belmont University in Nashville, Tenn. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)

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