There were clear winners and losers at the first presidential debate between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump. Here’s who won, and who lost.
Winners and Losers:
1). Hillary Clinton- Hillary Clinton’s experience shined throughout this debate, but not in the way many expected. Sure, Clinton was knowledgeable about the issues. She had her plans and details, but where she shined was in tone. While Trump was erratic and all over the map with his answers, Clinton controlled the conversation. Hillary Clinton’s debate experience was obvious.
This debate is where Hillary Clinton benefitted from the Democratic primary. Clinton’s debates with Bernie Sanders gave her the tough one on one debating experience that was clearly lacking in Trump. Hillary Clinton was head and shoulders above Trump in this debate. She turned Trump into a weak counter puncher who was stuck in his talking points.
Hillary Clinton needed to stand across from Trump on stage and confirm her stature as presidential. She did exactly that, while Trump was stripped of his side show and revealed to be in way over his head.
2). Lester Holt – Holt did not allow either candidate to ramble, and where Trump was concerned, he pressed the Republican nominee on releasing his tax returns, dropped the facts on stop and frisk, and held both candidates on topic and to the clock.
There was a great deal of concern before the debate that Holt would allow Trump to run wild, or hold him to a lower standard than Hillary Clinton. The NBC Nightly News anchor was a fair moderator who relied on facts and set the standard for how moderators need to conduct themselves in future debates.
1). Donald Trump – Trump had a bad debate on every level. Stripped of audience and ability to freewheel, Trump was flailing and responding to Clinton. Trump botched a question about his tax returns. He used Hillary Clinton’s emails in a defensive manner. Instead of attacking Clinton, Trump was the reactionary candidate.
Donald Trump managed to reinforce his racism when asked the birther question by defending stop and frisk. Trump was steamrolled for much of the debate, and in the final ten minutes, the Republican nominee came unglued and started ranting about Hillary Clinton’s temperament.
Trump had to convince voters that he was prepared, qualified, and could be trusted with the presidency. He failed the test on every level.
Mr. Easley is the managing editor, who is White House Press Pool, and a Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association