Dates picked year ago for US presidential debates will serve public: commission
A combination photo shows U.S. Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton (L) and Republican U.S. presidential candidate Donald Trump (R) in Los Angeles, California on May 5, 2016 and in Eugene, Oregon, U.S. on May 6, 2016 respectively. (REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson (L) and Jim Urquhart/File Photos)

The dates for the three debates ahead of the Nov. 8 U.S. presidential election were picked a year ago and "will serve the American public well," the nonpartisan Commission on Presidential Debates said in a statement on Sunday.


The commission was responding to complaints from Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump that the debate dates - Monday, Sept. 26, Sunday, Oct. 9, and Wednesday, Oct. 19 - should be changed because two of them conflict with televised National Football League games.

The commission, which was established in 1987 to organize and manage the debate process, said it is impossible to avoid all sporting events when scheduling debates, adding presidential debates have never been rescheduled because of conflicts with sporting events.

(Reporting by Roberta Rampton and Doina Chiacu; Editing by Sandra Maler)