Debate Three


The winner of this debate was clearly Chris Wallace who kept the candidates on task and pressed them on several key issues (most notably pressing Hillary on her proposed Syrian no-fly zone that could spark a war with Russia). Trump was OK at first but then got more incoherent as the night went on. Clinton was terrible at addressing questions about Wikileaks, had an awful answer on the Supreme Court and kept trying to awkwardly pivot to her talking points.

Trump probably edges this one out but I don’t think it will make a difference at this point. The good news is that this is the last debate of this endless election season. And so … maybe we’re the real winners.

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  1. repmom

    Seriously, Hal? No way does he edge this one. And you neglected to mention the one thing that is now, and will continue to be the main topic for days – his refusal to say if he would accept/honor the results of the debate.

    “Ill keep you in suspense.” As if it’s all a game. Disgusting.

    That, and his inappropriate (for the timing) “She’s such a nasty woman” commment.

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  2. West Virginia Rebel

    Hillary’s answers were very scripted and she was allowed to talk more than Trump. He was able to get in a couple of good shots at her but went off topic and kept going back to trade. He did bring up the rent-a-thugs from her campaign and checked her on the Clinton Foundation. In the long run, not a whole lot new here.

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  3. CM

    Trump lost badly again, especially for the reasons repmom stated. He just keeps proving he is what he’s accused of, while simultaneously denying it. Most of what he said was his usual rambling nonsense. He can’t possibly think that this was going to win over anyone who isn’t already voting for him. Hal, maybe you’ve not realised how far you’ve lowered the bar of expectation for Trump. Hillary showed again that she’s likely to be fine as President (notwithstanding political differences). I guess the most fascinating thing now is how well the Dems do in the Senate. 538 now has the Dems with a 74.3% chance of controlling it, a dramatic change from a little more than a week ago. Clearly Trump is affecting these down-ticket races. He’s certainly turning out to be all the Dems dreamed of.

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  4. CM


    “It is utterly disqualifying for any office in the United States, let alone the presidency. Trump is an utter disgrace and so is the party that nominated him. The GOP must now disavow him, if it is to remain a viable party in a constitutional democracy.”

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  5. Hal_10000 *

    “Ill keep you in suspense.” As if it’s all a game. Disgusting.

    That, and his inappropriate (for the timing) “She’s such a nasty woman” commment.

    Yeah, that was a new low, even for him. There was also his “no one has more respect for women than I do” followed by the audience’s open laughter. I wrote the above right before bed after a long day. Thinking about it after some sleep, I think I did lower my expectations of Trump. He also contradicted himself on multiple occasions (e.g., saying Obama had an open borders policy then later saying Obama had deported millions) and was completely incoherent on Aleppo.

    I’m working on a post on Trump’s election rigging stuff.  Stay tuned.

    I do not think Clinton had a great debate, though. Her answer to questions about wikileaks was poor. She again advocated a no-fly zone in Syria and claimed (falsely) that she will not add to the debt. Her answer on SCOTUS was both scary, saying nothing about the Constitution, and inaccurate, falsely saying Heller was about protecting toddlers. One thing I said on Twitter was that the debate made it really obvious that a normal Republican would crush her. Her best points of the night where when she needled Trump on his business record, outsourcing and behavior.

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  6. Aussiesmurf

    One thing I said on Twitter was that the debate made it really obvious that a normal Republican would crush her. 

    You guys keep saying this, as if it was some mystic deity’s wish that Trump be the nominee.  Due to a relentless barrage of Fox News and talk radio, a plurality of the Republican party thinks that Trump is the ideal nominee.  If the Republicans want a more moderate nominee, they should vote that way.

    It may well be true that Bush and Rubio would do better against a Democratic nominee, but its not the fault of the left that the Rs didnt vote for them.

    (Cue Alex’s conspiracy theory that the Ds rigged the primaries in favour of Trump)

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  7. repmom

    Aussiesmirth – I don’t think any of us blame the D’s for Trump. Well, I don’t know about Alex….

    I posted this on Facebook Sunday –


    Warning — this is political, and I’m not sure it serves any purpose other than me venting my absolute frustration as a Republican with this election. Having said that, here goes —

    During the entire primaries all polls showed Senator Marco Rubio the most likely of all the Republican candidates to beat Hillary Clinton in the general election. But that didn’t seem to matter to a number of Republicans — they were “mad as hell at the establishment” and they weren’t “going to take it anymore”. They wanted the outsider.

    Combine that with right-wing Fox News’ infatuation with Donald Trump, who gave the TV celebrity much more air-time than Rubio or any of the other candidates, even dissed the others, (Jeanine Pirro even joined in with Trump, using the term “little Marco” herself) and here we are. (So did all the other news networks, for that matter, because, as they readily admitted, it was good for ratings.)

    So, yes, when Donald whines about media bias, he’s right. It does exist. It always has. I don’t recall him, however, whining about it during the primaries when he was getting all the air time. And about those polls — it seems they are only rigged when he’s down. As they say – I’m old enough to remember the days when he proudly tweeted them.

    So, as I say, here we are. Stuck with a disgusting, idiot pig (imo) Republican candidate so utterly incompetent that he can’t even beat evil Hillary Clinton, who, btw, is busy this morning on Twitter (Donald) whining about the unfairness of a late night comedy show.

    We could have had Marco Rubio, or any of the other decent candidates, who would be crushing Hillary in the polls right now, with the biased media hard-pressed to dig up any dirt on them three weeks before the election. But we were “mad as hell”…

    Oh — one more thing about Marco Rubio. That “little hands” joke he told during a rally that turned so many of you away from him. Doesn’t seem so vulgar anymore, does it?

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  8. AlexInCT

    “Ill keep you in suspense.” As if it’s all a game. Disgusting.

    How soon we forget things repmom.

    Starting with ManBearPig (Al Gore) and every democrat candidate since then, including Obama, take a look at their comments when faced with this situation and remained unsure of the win. Of course, the LSM is acting as if Trump is the first one to ever do something like this, because if it was not for double standards the left would have none.

    Research Al Gore’s attempt to use an army of lawyers, political apparatchiks, and the media to disenfranchise military and non-democrat voters, rig the count in his favor on every possible front, and then seek special help from a biased court to steal an election, for some perspective. Especially how he hid behind the ludicrous mantra of wanting every vote to count crap.

    Aussiesmirth – I don’t think any of us blame the D’s for Trump. Well, I don’t know about Alex….

    I blame the ineffective and corrupt leadership of the republican party for Trump, even if the democrats rigged his win in states where people could vote across party lines. To me Trump was more about sending a giant “f-u” to the establishment candidates than anything else. Had the republicans stuck to their promises and not done their best to dismantle the Tea Party – which opposed the status quo and the establishment – I think Trump would never have factored in. But the people are tired of a rigged game, the ineffectiveness of the leadership cast (and they sure act as if they are above the rest of us peons) in both parties, the plundering of the successful, and the downright destruction of the American dream by people that think it should be collectivism writ large.

    I expect this dissatisfaction with the republican party elite to get even worse if Hilary wins this election, not because of Trump, but because there really isn’t much difference between the corrupt, ineffective, and cowardly republican leadership and the democrats when it comes to destroying America. Their only appeal today over the democrats is that they will do the damage in slow motion instead of at the pace Obama has set, and Hillary will double down on.

    We deserve the corrupt and idiotic people we have today. There are no leaders or visionaries out there anymore. They are just a bunch of credentialed profiteers and shysters that will drag the world down into dark times all while claiming to be doing the compassionate or good thing. The road to hell and all that….

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  9. ilovecress

    So my take on the debate, and who ‘won’ depends on what you think each candidate was going for.

    HRC was clearly just trying to stay out of the headlines, and run down the clock. I don’t think she will have persuaded anyone who thinks she’s untrustworthy that she is trustworthy. I’d guess that their calculation was that she couldn’t give a good answer on Wikileaks, so she should pivot away from it. The Syria thing was worrying, but I think it was there to highlight Trump/Putin. The supreme court answer wasn’t great, but ‘did no harm’.

    From a Trump point of view – I don’t think he’s trying to win the election any more. I think he’s looking towards shoring up his supporters for post the election (before the debate there was a weird streaming chat show that could have been a sort of ‘Trump-TV’ pilot? I dunno, that might be going a bit far, but it has to have occurred to someone that Breitbart plus Ayles headed by Trump could make a fair bit of money in conservative media?)

    The way he talked about O’Keefe and Wikileaks was put across in such a way that unless you’re familiar with them, you wouldn’t really know what he was talking about. It played towards the base and didn’t attempt to bring anyone over to his side. This was playing to the Steve Bannan audience, and ignoring the Kellyanne Conway audience. Trump isn’t in a place where he just needs to convince undecideds any more. He needs to whittle away at the HRC support, either through turnout, or by changing their minds. But that wasn’t even what he attempted.

    So I think HRC won by not losing, and Trump lost by not winning.


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