How to Watch the Vice Presidential Debate


Here’s how to watch the vice presidential debate online, with cable, or with one of those old-fashioned antenna things – plus everything you need to know about the debate schedule, what to watch for, and more.

When is the vice presidential debate?

First things first: the vice presidential debate starts at 9 PM Eastern on October 4 (that’s tonight, folks). It runs until 10:30 PM, with no commercials.


What channel is the vice presidential debate on?

So many channels! As with the (much more important) first presidential debate, you can catch the action on all four major networks (ABC, CBS, NBC, and FOX) as well as on a ton of different news channels (CNN, FOX News, Bloomberg TV, CNBC, C-SPAN, and MSNBC), PBS, and Univision.


How to watch the vice presidential debate online

No cable? No problem. Here’s how to stream the debate.



You can keep reading if you want, or you can just click this link and watch the debate on YouTube (it’s the PBS NewsHour stream).



ABC News is streaming their debate feed live over Facebook. Which, sure, okay.



Yeah, okay, why not?


Sling TV

Sling TV is a skinny bundle that offers a package of streaming channels for a great price. There’s a week-long free trial. Sling TV includes CNN and other news networks, so it’s a nice option if you don’t want to stick to the PBS stream.


PlayStation Vue

PlayStation Vue is a competitor of Sling TV – it works pretty much the same way, right down to the free trial.


Over-the-air broadcasts

The four major networks are available over the air in many areas. PBS and Univision may also be available. Just grab an antenna and you should be good to go.


What to watch for in the vice presidential debate

  • These are two very similar dudes: both Kaine and Pence are cheerful white guys in their late 50s. Both served on Capitol Hill (Kaine as a senator, Pence as a congressman) and as governors. Both have a son in the Marine Corps, but neither father served. Both have three children in all. Both have law degrees.
  • Who the hell are these guys? 40% of voters say ¯\_(ツ)_/¯. Can either candidate make much of an impression in this debate? Does either really want to, or would each be content to avoid making a bad one?
  • How will Pence handle differences in policy with Trump? Pence and Trump don’t agree on all issues, and Pence will have to explain why he’s backing the positions at the top of the ticket.
  • Can Pence defend Trump’s behavior? Trump has a penchant for saying bonkers stuff, and Pence’s role on the ticket is to balance and defend that tendency.
  • Will Kaine do anything to win over Sanders supporters? Clinton’s choice of a more conservative VP annoyed the party’s progressive wing. Kaine’s polls have drifted in the wrong direction since the Democratic National Convention.


Main image: Getty Images / Ralph Freso; Alex Wong, via AM New York

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