Shep Smith somberly weighs in on a debate 'the likes of which the United States has never seen'

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Former Fox News anchor Shepard Smith ahead of his TV return is somberly offering his thoughts on this week's jaw-dropping presidential debate.

Smith, who abruptly left Fox last year but is set to debut his new CNBC evening news show on Wednesday, spoke to CNBC following Tuesday's chaotic debate and deemed it a "challenging" day for America.

"We're launching on a challenging and I think historic day, where the president has refused to say that he will accept the outcome of the election ... where he told a white supremacist group to stand by and get ready to stand up," Smith said. "And where the vice president ... called [Trump] a clown and a liar."

Smith went on to assess that it was a debate "the likes of which the United States has never seen," adding that "there has never been an event of that nature in this nation." Pundits widely expressed shock over the chaos of the debate, which saw President Trump repeatedly interrupt former Vice President Joe Biden. Smith also appeared concerned over Trump in the debate telling the far-right extremist group the Proud Boys to "stand back and stand by" when asked to condemn white supremacists.

"We'll lean on the FBI to tell us about who these groups are, who have been told to stand by and get ready to stand up," Smith said. "And we'll try to take a look at where we are and where we're going on what I really believe is a historic day for the democracy."

Moderator Chris Wallace drew some criticism for his handling of the debate, and Smith on Wednesday concluded that his former Fox colleague wasn't prepared for the chaos — not that anyone else was.

"I know Chris Wallace for decades," Smith said. "He was prepared for a debate. He was not prepared for what came last night. None of us were."

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