As of this writing, all the online polls I saw have Trump winning the debate, except the Time poll which has him in a tie with Clinton.
During the primaries, the Drudge poll was the best indicator of a candidate’s success. It consistently had Trump in the lead, despite what all the pundits said. Tonight he was at 80%.
The importance of these debates is questionable anyhow. If you don’t believe this, think back to the first Romney-Obama fight. People gushed about how well Romney did. They thought he had made excellent points against Obama; so well that many thought he had clinched the presidency.
You know how that turned out. In further debates Romney disappointed and, of course, lost the election.
As was expected, Lester Holt’s bias was on display. He’s an admirable followup to Lyin’ Brian Williams. Look at the topics he covered: jobs/economy (because she needs to improve in this category); race (because she needs to shore up black votes); cyber attacks (so Hillary could blame Russia for the DNC hacks and implicate Trump). Where were the questions on immigration, Syria, Isis (at least Holt refrained from using Obama’s ISIL term), education, gun control, crime, religious freedom, Islamic radicals, daycare help for working families? They were absent because it would have helped Trump.
Holt also didn’t want to make the mistake Matt Lauer did. He actually asked Hillary about the email scandal and got smacked by liberals everywhere for it.
So Trump ended up debating Hillary and the moderator.
Hillary’s debate training showed in her voice. She lowered it so as not to sound her usual shrill, strident self. Her staff worked on her smiling, but in a very annoying way. She looked supercilious and smug throughout the debate. At times it was downright weird and bobble headed. Mr. Midtown Republican noted she resembled the Joker.
I found myself tuning her out when she answered her questions. Her answers were robotic and political-speak. We’ve heard the same kind of blah blah from her and others for decades. All I know about her economic plan is that she drools about raising taxes and wants to give free college education – an idea stolen from Bernie Sanders by the way. That will surely lead to economic prosperity, no?
Trump did his best in the first 45 minutes when this topic dominated. By contrast, he had passion in his voice. He rebutted her ridiculous answer that increasing solar panels will help the economy. He pointed out that coal workers get dumped in her business/energy plans. He scored saying that we can’t do all she wants with a $20 trillion debt and that her proposals have been around for 30 years and not helped anything. He torpedoed her on NAFTA and later on TPP.
Hillary pushed her book “Stronger Together” and kept insisting that Trump be fact checked. That was her rebuttal to his charges. And, oh, did I say she looked smug, because her condescension reached new heights. Kind of like the podium they constructed for her that made her look taller than she is.
By the way, Clinton continued to address Trump as Donald, while he called her Secretary Clinton. It was another way of condescending and trying to get under his skin. In the final minutes of the debate he started calling her Hillary. I think he had had enough of the false familiarity.
Didn’t her reference to her dad – three times – seem odd, too? She talked about his drapery business and how hard he worked. That’s her attempt at connecting with workers. Can somebody fact check whether he was a Republican, because I think he was and she grew up in a Republican household.
When she came at “Donald” with the release of his tax returns, bankruptcies and allegedly stiffing workers, Trump missed a golden opportunity to hit her on the Clinton Foundation money. I doubt he will miss that second time around, though.
I couldn’t help thinking that Romney would have withered under all this. His tactic was to lay down and let the truck run over him.
Holt then switched to race as the second big issue. Race relations are important, but they are not the top priority for most people. Trump mentioned the strain experienced by blacks with crime in the inner city, but Holt moved it on to the birther issue. Way too much time was spent on this. Tell me Holt was not in collaboration for this one.
Then they moved to cyber attacks. The door was open to Clinton’s email server failings, but Trump did not breach it. She got off with an “everybody makes mistakes” excuse.
Holt also showed his hand in insisting that Trump had been for the Iraq War. That got under his skin and he denied it. He referred to his conversations about it with Sean Hannity, a real boost for that Fox host. Holt let Hillary get by with lying that Bush was the one who planned the exit from Iraq. I doubt news media fact checkers will bother with that whopper.
Another Holt whopper was that the Supreme Court had ruled against the stop and frisk policy. Trump called him out on this one, but Holt refused to believe the facts.
The next few days will bring a tsunami of analysis on that hour and a half. There will be preening by Dems and breast beating by Republicans. The polls will probably show a bump for Hillary. They are bogus, too. Romney supposedly got a bump from the first debate, but we see where that landed him.
Don’t buy into it. Make your own mind up and turn the TV off.
There will be a second debate next Thursday at Washington University in St. Louis, my alma mater. You can bet that Trump will have honed his skills and will zero in on the topics helpful to him. She’s probably shot her wad. Will she have the stamina for more?