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2020 U.S. ELECTION: What you need to know right now

Sept 29 (Reuters) - Get ready for the fireworks: the first 2020 presidential debate is finally here!

Taxes, the Supreme Court, the coronavirus and the economy promise to be front and center as Republican President Donald Trump and Democratic rival Joe Biden square off for the first time in what is expected to be a brutally personal grudge match.

- Trump’s campaign is upping its spending on lawyers as an election legal battle heats up. New FEC data shows Trump spending hundreds of thousands of dollars on lawyers to litigate voting by mail, including in the battleground state of Pennsylvania.

- Trump’s Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett is due to meet senators on Tuesday, beginning with majority leader Mitch McConnell. Legal experts told Reuters that Barrett’s comments suggesting she backed challenges to the Obamacare healthcare law do not ensure she would vote to invalidate it in an upcoming case.

INVESTOR VIEW

Heightened equity market volatility extending beyond the presidential election is the most significant risk for investors, AIA Group’s chief investment officer said on Tuesday. Ahead of the debate, global stocks slipped.

GLOBAL PERSPECTIVE

Immigrant families separated around the world by Trump’s aggressive policies face a new phase of uncertainty: waiting to see who will win the election. The sheer number of new policies mean those waits are likely to drag out further because many families are affected by not only one new Trump measure but several layered on top of each other.

BY THE NUMBERS

A Reuters/Ipsos poll found 79% of Americans who said they favored Biden were completely certain of their candidate. Follow Reuters pollinghere

- For the next 41 days, Reuters/Ipsos is polling likely voters in six states - Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, Michigan, North Carolina, Florida and Arizona - that will play critical roles in deciding the Nov. 3 outcome. See the state of the battlegrounds at tmsnrt.rs/2G0bIcS

ON THE CAMPAIGN TRAIL

Expected events and Reuters coverage on Sept. 29:

- Trump, Biden participate in their first debate (USA-ELECTION/DEBATE (PIX, TV) 21:00 ET / 01:00 GMT)

* Biden supporters attend drive-in watch party

* Women for Trump meet up to watch presidential debate in California

* Live view of debate venue

* Assessing the Trump economy ahead of the presidential debate

* TIMELINE - From Kennedy-Nixon to Trump-Biden: 60 years of U.S. presidential debates

* Takeaways from the first Trump vs Biden debate

* FACTBOX - Quotes from the first Trump vs Biden debate

* ANALYSIS - Trump, Biden participate in their first debate

- How will gun owners in Texas vote in November? (USA-ELECTION/TEXAS-GUNS (TV) 09:00 ET / 13:00 GMT)

- Democratic vice presidential nominee Kamala Harris attends fundraiser (USA-ELECTION/HARRIS 13:00 ET / 17:00 GMT)

- Vice President Mike Pence campaigns in Pennsylvania (USA-ELECTION/PENCE 17:00 ET / 21:00 GMT)

- Election observers outline their plan to monitor the election (USA-ELECTION/OBSERVERS (TV) 14:00 ET / 18:00 GMT)

- Reuters/Ipsos poll on Trump’s taxes, 2020 election (USA-ELECTION/POLL 17:00 ET / 21:00 GMT)

Refinitiv customers can find more 2020 U.S. Election content on the Election App (USPOL) on Eikon or Workspace.

Media customers can find complete multimedia coverage on the Reuters Connect planning calendar here here

Editing by Leela de Kretser and Rosalba O’Brien

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