(Reuters) - Puppets resembling U.S. presidential candidates Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump squared off in New York City on Monday a few hours before the real candidates were due to engage in their first debate.
The puppets took questions from a human moderator on such topics as climate change and women's rights. The event was performed by cast members of Avenue Q, a Broadway musical starring people and puppets.
"It's a hoax. It's hoax. It's fake. It's fake. You've got Bill Nye the science guy, and Neil deGrasse Mike Tyson saying whatever they want," puppet Trump said about climate change, referring to television presenter Nye and a mash-up of astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson and the former boxer Mike Tyson.
"We all know the sun is going to crash into the Earth. We know it's fine. It's huge. It's huge," the Trump puppet added.
When asked for their impressions of each other after their first debate, puppet Clinton said, "I expected him to be crass and rude, and he delivered. So I guess he delivered on his promise."
Puppet Trump said puppet Clinton "is a two, a three on a good day."
The real Clinton and Trump are scheduled to face off for the first time in a debate on Monday night, six weeks before the Nov. 8 election.
(Reporting by Reuters TV; Writing by Melissa Fares; Editing by Bill Rigby)