American Government, Alexander Sections

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  • Sex Tapes and the Second Presidential Debate
  • #39479

    Can Trump still become our next president?

    I’m opening this thread hours before the Sunday night debate, the second one between Trump and Clinton. Any thoughts on the debate before it happens? Any further thoughts during and after? We’d love to hear from you. (And by “you,” I mean anyone who still has access to this site, past and present students of my classes.)


    The debate is about to begin. Anybody online tonight while watching it? Feel free to post while you watch. I may have some thoughts too. I have some ideas of what to expect, but who knows what will happen?

    (Others are watching a football game, of course. If you’re watching that, I hope your team wins.)


    My first two observations:
    1. There was no handshake.
    2. Trump does not look very happy tonight.


    Well, they’re certainly fighting the mudbowl now.


    Now that they’re finally on policy: The one thing always missing from these debates is the fact that any kind of improvement in the way Obamacare (or anything else) works is the fact that it takes the cooperation of Congress, not just the president, to make it happen. And this aspect is politics as usual: candidates always exaggerate the powers of the president in the debates, saying “I will” when what they really mean is “I will ask Congress to.”


    Now that they’re out of the mudbowl and onto the issues, I’d actually say that neither one of them is doing all that badly. Trump is repeating all the same talking points we’ve been hearing right along, but that may be all he needs to do not to make his situation worse. No narcissistic meltdown so far.


    Trump isn’t doing badly at the moment.


    However, he is repeating the same talking points again and again, including the “30 years” bit. Hillary wasn’t in a position of influence for any 30 years.

    (When I say he isn’t doing too badly, I only mean that he isn’t damaging himself worse than he had before the debate, and may be winning some voters back.)


    I see that Politico has called this the ugliest debate in American presidential debate history. But now, they’re on the issues–talking about Syria now.

    Trump repeatedly accuses the moderators of bias, letting her go a minute overtime and not letting him go a second over.

    He’s parroting the talking points. That will play well to his own followers; it remains to be seen whether he’s impressing anyone else.

    I’m hearing him now say “I will be president for all the people,” which is exactly the opposite of what I’ve been finding from his earlier pronouncements.


    She’s not doing any harm to herself. She’s well prepared, and integrates attacks on Trump with positive talking points.


    Well, at least they closed with a handshake.

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