Donald Trump refuses to denounce QAnon at NBC town hall

'You're not someone's crazy uncle' - Trump pressed on tweeting conspiracy theories about Biden at town hall

The president squared off against the esteemed journalist on Thursday night (local time) as she grilled him over white supremacy, his handling of the coronavirus pandemic and QAnon.

Asked about QAnon, a right wing conspiracy theory claiming that Democrats are part of a global pedophile ring, Trump said he couldn't disavow it because he didn't know enough about it.

Trump at times grew agitated with Guthrie during the 60-minute town hall event Thursday.

Biden, appearing almost 1,200 miles away, denounced the White House's handling of the virus that has claimed more than 215,000 American lives, declaring that it was at fault for closing a pandemic response office established by the Obama administration.

'Whether I am a defeated candidate for president back teaching or I'm elected president, it's a major element of everything that I'm about because it reflects who we are as a nation, ' Biden said. "I know that study", Guthrie said.

Trump and Biden appeared at opposite town halls on Thursday in lieu of a debate after the nonpartisan Commission on Presidential Debates made a decision to move to a virtual format for the second debate due to Trump's COVID-19 diagnosis.

"I know nothing about QAnon", Trump responded.

Mr Trump is likely citing a report posted in March by scholars from the Imperial College in London that predicted that a total of 2.2 million Americans could die from COVID-19 if no preventative measures were installed on any level of society.

"CDC guidance says that wearing a mask is meant to protect other people in case the mask wearer has #COVID19", CDC tweeted.

Meanwhile, in the blue corner, Biden was more passive and calm, charming the audience.

"He just refused to denounce QAnon and now he's having a meltdown".

In Miami, town hall moderator Savannah Guthrie from USA network NBC asked Mr Trump if he would disavow the QAnon movement.

The pair held competing town hall events in separate cities after Mr Trump refused to take part in a virtual presidential debate format.

"Why is Savannah Guthrie debating President Trump?".

Fox News reported that "Viewers who tuned into the Peacock Network expected to hear questions from voters, but similarly to the NBC town hall with Biden, questions for almost the first 20 minutes of the program came from the moderator". "The media is garbage these days", one woman wrote.