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It’s Here: Trump And Clinton To Face Off In First Debate


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With viewership predicted to rival that of the Super Bowl, Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton are facing off Monday night for their first of three televised debates.


The debate, taking place at Hofstra University in Hempstead, New York, is set to run from 9 to 10:30 p.m EST.


Among the questions heading into the debate: which Donald Trump will America see? The attack dog who decimated “Low-Energy” Jeb Bush, “Lyin’ Ted” Cruz and “Little Marco” Rubio during the Republican primary debates? Or the measured, sober-minded Trump who looked presidential while standing next to the president of Mexico last month?


Will Clinton try to provoke Trump into overreacting with counter-punches in ways that could turn off voters? Or will she ignore attacks from Trump and try to make herself look like a more knowledgable and serious contender?Scissors-32x32.png

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'Fact Checking' the Candidates at the Debate: Whose Job is It?


With a little more than 24 hours before Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump square off in the first presidential debate, liberals and the Clinton campaign have been calling on moderator Lester Holt to "fact check" Donald Trump.


But the Commission on Presidential Debates doesn't think that's a good idea.


CNN Money:


The Commission on Presidential Debates has some advice for debate moderators this fall: leave the fact-checking to the candidates.

The Trump campaign is taking the same position. So are some former moderators, like Jim Lehrer, who has facilitated twelve presidential debatesScissors-32x32.png



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Clinton camp signals foul play before debate even begins


As part of an effort to manage expectations for the first presidential debate, Hillary Clinton's campaign suggested on Sunday that foul play will give Donald Trump an unfair advantage over the former secretary of state.


Senior aides to Clinton have repeatedly suggested that the Democratic nominee could be treated unfairly during Monday's debate by not receiving ample time to fact-check her Republican opponent, who has a tendency to repeat debunked claims, or facing a moderator who lets Trump's falsehoods "go unchallenged."


Clinton's campaign manager, Robby Mook, tried to set further expectations on Sunday, claiming that Trump will enjoy the advantage of being "graded on a curve" for his debate performance by members of the media and viewers.Scissors-32x32.png



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Before debate, Clinton works refs, asks for special treatment


For several days, Democrats and their supporters in the press have demanded that presidential debate moderator Lester Holt factcheck Donald Trump in Monday night's showdown at Hofstra University. Those demands turned to pleading Sunday when Hillary Clinton's campaign manager, Robby Mook, appearing on ABC's "This Week," asked for special treatment for Clinton in the event that Trump tells lies from the debate stage.


"All that we're asking is that, if Donald Trump lies, that it's pointed out," Mook said. "It's unfair to ask for Hillary both to play traffic cop while with Trump, make sure that his lies are corrected, and also to present her vision for what she wants to do for the American people."


"But isn't that what a debater is supposed to do?" asked host George Stephanopoulos.


"Well, I think Donald Trump's special," Mook said. "We haven't seen anything like this…So we're saying this is a special circumstance, a special debate, and Hillary should be given some time to actually talk about what she wants to do to make a difference in people's lives. She shouldn't have to spend the whole debate correcting the record."Scissors-32x32.png



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Cretin Hop
Preparing for the presidential debates
Kevin D. Williamson
September 25, 2016

I have invented a new drinking game for the upcoming Clinton–Trump presidential debate. It works like this: You stand in the stairwell of a very tall building. Every time somebody says something stupid or dishonest, you walk up a flight of stairs. At the end, you jump out of the nearest window, and people drink at your wake.

There are no winners.

Unfortunately, there will be a winner in November.

That some part of this republic’s well-being should be dependent upon a ceremonial exchange of words between Hillary Rodham Clinton and Donald Trump — two of the most dishonest, vapid, and empty human-shaped things in American public life — is enough to induce despair. But millions will watch, and one must wonder what, exactly, it is they hope to get out of it.

Millions watch the political conventions, too, which is equally mysterious but may shed some light on the debates. Having been to many of those conventions as a reporter, I am painfully aware of something that may not be obvious to the typical home viewer: These events are very, very carefully designed to avoid the production of actual news. If a real story comes out of your political convention, you have done it wrong. That is why they are so dreadfully boring. It may be that people watch boring political events for the same reason they watch boring car races: There is always the possibility of a fiery crash. In much the same way, the possibility of a brawl enlivens the otherwise unbearably tedious game of ice hockey.

If the debates were what they pretend to be — an exchange of views and ideas between presidential candidates — then Mrs. Clinton would be in the catbird seat. She’s a grim-faced, dotty old bat, to be sure, and someone who has never in her long political career ever been so much as downwind of an interesting and original idea, but she knows the rules of the game and has been adequately schooled. She is well positioned to treat the debate as a less refined version of the Japanese tea ceremony — going through the motions is the only thing she’s ever been any good at.

But the debates are not debates. They have nothing to do with ideas or substantive policy views. They are spectacle, and spectacle is the thing for which Donald Trump has a great talent. Clinton is good at satisfying convention and expectations, whereas Trump is good at making a ruckus. George Bernard Shaw advised against wrestling with pigs on the grounds that “you both get dirty, and the pig likes it.” But there is no way for Clinton to avoid wrestling this particular pig: She is too much of a creature of political convention to refuse to participate in these ceremonial debates, and too much of a creature of convention to know what to expect out of them.



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For Those Of Us Who Don't Have TV

How to Watch, Live Stream, and Listen to the First Presidential Debate


The debate will be broadcast live on C-SPAN, ABC, CBS, FOX, and NBC and all cable news channels– including CNN, Fox News, and MSNBC. All the major news networks will also be offering free live streams in addition to those provided by YouTube, Facebook, and Twitter.


Viewers without a cable subscription can view the debate live on CNN.com, for free and without a cable provider login.


Satellite radio subscribers can listen to the debate live on more than a dozen SiriusXM channels, including CNBC (Ch. 112) and CNN (Ch. 116).


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I want one of the questions for Illary to be: What chemical concoction did they have to embalm you with...to stand up here and talk? Or: Do you have a "motorman's friend" strapped to your leg...going into a bucket under the stage? Let's get ready to RUMBLE!

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I think the winner depends on who you were already for.


I think its more who was the loser and that would be Lester Holt - he blatantly misrepresented, misled Trump's views and ethics and was wrong on "frisk and serve". Holt also corrected Trump as to whether Trump was against the Iraq war.


Trump does need to come up with definitive answers to his tax returns, birther question, etc because these same same old Democrat talking points are gonna continue. but this fact checking corrections by the moderator has to stop.


The worse to me personally was how Hillary inferred and implied that Trump is racist and thus inferring and implying that we who are voting for his side are also racists.


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Analysis: Trump Opens Strong, Then Takes the Bait and Blows Opportunities


Thoughts on last night:


(1) On policy substance -- ideology aside -- Hillary Clinton was more informed and prepared than Donald Trump by a wide margin, as expected. She also remained mostly cool and collected, even as the debate threatened to veer off the rails on several occasions. She was smug, rehearsed and pedantic at times, and exhibited some breathtaking hypocrisy (yes, let's hear some more about the importance of data security, Madame Email Scandal), but my instinct is that she won this exchange overall. She did so over the last hour-plus of the debate, pulling away after Trump held his own early. He may have been a little heavy on the interruption over that opening stretch for someone with a temperament problem, but he hit his central themes hard and pretty effectively. When Clinton went on offense over tax returns, the federal race discrimination lawsuit against Trump's company and birtherism, his responses were woefully insufficient (despite some flashes of decent parrying, like highlighting her deleted emails, and noting her 2008 campaign's scurrilous anti-Obama tactics). She won because she baited him, and he took the bait every time, missing far too many chances to land obvious thematic and specific counter-punches -- on emails, on the Clinton Foundation, on Benghazi. Rarely did he put her on the defensive, which isn't especially hard to do. His lack of focused preparation was, once again, quite clear.Scissors-32x32.png



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Why Lester Holt Is Being Called the 'Third Debater'


In Townhall's initial assessment, some of us concluded Lester Holt was a fair and neutral presence in Monday night's showdown between Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton. Other viewers, however, did not see it that way and make some good points.


Trump-friendly audiences were not happy that Holt spent countless minutes asking the GOP nominee about the birther controversy, his tax returns, and his past comments about women. The moderator also interrupted Trump more often (although that may be because Trump exceeded his time more often) and saved his only fact checks for Trump's answers on the Iraq War. This explains why Heat Street dubbed Holt the "Third Debater." Scissors-32x32.png



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Byron York: Donald Trump's missed opportunities


HEMPSTEAD, N.Y. — As he prepared for the crucial first presidential debate, Donald Trump knew moderator Lester Holt would bring up the birther issue. He knew Holt would raise Trump's tax returns. And his old position on the Iraq war. None are among the voters' top concerns, but it was eminently predictable that they would be part of the debate — not least because if Holt had not brought them up, Hillary Clinton would have.

But Trump might not have predicted that Holt would leave some equally, if not more, important topics untouched. There was Obamacare, currently veering towards crisis. Immigration, including a proposed wall along the U.S.-Mexico border. The Clinton Foundation. Benghazi. Certainly a moderator can't cover everything, but those were some pretty big omissions.

Holt deserves blame for not bringing them up. But on the other hand, that is where a candidate's preparation comes in. If the moderator doesn't raise a key issue, the candidate does. And Trump didn't.

"The wall is a very important issue, and I am surprised that it wasn't brought up, frankly," one of Trump's key supporters and advisers, Sen. Jeff Sessions, said after the debate. "Also, they didn't bring up the Clinton Foundation. I mean, goodness gracious. So I thought there were a number of issues that could have been brought up that would have been troubling for Secretary Clinton that were not brought up."



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In debate, Clinton gets no follow-up questions, Trump gets 6


Republican Donald Trump was kept on the defensive at the first presidential debate, in several instances having to debate the highly anticipated event's moderator as well as his Democratic opponent.


Trump was challenged on his answers Monday night at Hofstra University in New York at least six times by NBC's Lester Holt, according to the Washington Examiner's count. Hillary Clinton, meanwhile was no follow-up questions for the 90-minute debate.


The debate was separated into three segments: "Achieving Prosperity," "America's Direction" and "Securing America."


In the first segment, Trump was asked about his reluctance to release his tax returns, which he has said he is unwilling to make public until a federal audit on them has been completed, an excuse he reiterated during the debate.Scissors-32x32.png


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Policy takes back seat in chippy debate


HEMPSTEAD, N.Y. — Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump, embracing his outsider’s credentials, said Democratic opponent Hillary Clinton was the candidate of the establishment and urged the country to move beyond the anti-terror and free trade policies he said have failed the country for decades, as they faced off in the first presidential debate Monday.

Mrs. Clinton tried to get under Mr. Trump’s skin, baiting him by saying he is not as rich as he claims, that he coasted on his father’s coattails as a businessman, that he was stingy when it came to charitable giving and that he has engaged in racist behavior.

The candidates interrupted each other during the chippy debate, though Mr. Trump was guilty of the lion’s share of violations, and traded charges of hiding from the voters with his tax returns and her secret emails.

Policy took a back seat for most of the 90-minute affair, held at Hofstra University, though Mr. Trump did break ground in saying he supports banning those who appear on the no-fly and other terrorist watch lists from legally purchasing firearms.Scissors-32x32.png


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Three ways Hillary Clinton won the debate — and why it might not matter


HEMPSTEAD, N.Y. — Hillary Clinton beat Donald Trump in their first of three presidential debates, but it may not ultimately change the trajectory of the race.


Here's why Clinton won:


Clinton pushed Trump off his game more than Trump pushed Clinton off of hers. After getting off to a strong start by emphasizing his economic message, Trump faltered as the debate went on. He undermined his populist appeal by making repeated references to gaming the system to his advantage without making a broader point. For instance, when Clinton attacked Trump for rooting for the housing market collapse so he could profit, he simply interjected, "That's called business, by the way" — rather than explain what he meant (one explanation might be that good businessmen are prepared for any environment); when Clinton said he didn't pay federal income taxes, Trump said, "That makes me smart." Trump also became aggravated in the debate — he sighed into the microphone, repeatedly interrupted Clinton and moderator Lester Holt in a way that risked coming off as rude. Clinton, in contrast, generally ignored or laughed off some of Trump's more bombastic statements.


Clinton reassured supporters and the Democratic base. After weeks of declining poll numbers, Clinton came into the debate running the risk that supporters were going to start to feel dejected. But the debate performance likely increased the confidence of those pulling for Clinton, making them less worried that she was going to blow the election. Furthermore, she emphasized a lot of the issues important to the liberal base — raising the minimum wage, increasing infrastructure spending, instituting paid leave and profit sharing arrangements. She also fully embraced Obama.Scissors-32x32.png


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Donald Trump won, but he needs to be better on his own best arguments


HEMPSTEAD, N.Y. — Monday night’s debate here was a tremendous victory for Donald Trump, but his performance left plenty of room for improvement.

Big picture: Polls show support for Hillary Clinton is collapsing, and she desperately needed to stanch the bleeding. She did nothing during the debate to change the trajectory of those increasingly bleak polls.

With states like Pennsylvania and Colorado in play this week, we could be talking about states like Michigan and Wisconsin in play next week. That would put the race away early for Mr. Trump.

Mrs. Clinton’s primary charge against Mr. Trump is that he lacks the “temperament” to be president. In an easy glide Monday night, Mr. Trump demonstrated otherwise.

He was perfectly presidential, even if a bit unpolished at times — just the way so many of his supporters love him. He was poised and even a bit mannerly at times.Scissors-32x32.png



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