Donald Trump left a lot on the table at the first presidential debate.
Hillary Clinton was classic Hillary Clinton: When she was asked a question, she looked through her mental Rolodex to find the answer that best responded to the question and then, like she was reading from a book, repeated the memorized answer. Maybe it’s impressive to some that she could memorize so many two minute answers, and Trump did nothing to throw her off her game.
It is worth noting that she was never asked a follow-up question by the moderator, Lester Holt, while Trump was challenged by Holt six times on his answers.
The debate was like an old fashioned boxing match that was supposed to stop only when one of the boxers was knocked out, but was halted early with both boxers still standing. With no official judges, the backers of each boxer declare victory. Trump supporters declared Trump the victor and Hillary Clinton supporters declared Hillary Clinton the victor. With no judges, it is left up to each person who watched to make up their own mind.
The mainstream media would have given the debate to Hillary Clinton even if she had collapsed at the podium like she did at the 9/11 memorial service.
What seems to be overlooked by the pundits is the idea is not to win the debate, but to win the election, and this was the first of three debates. Even those who gave the debate to Hillary Clinton sometimes added that they didn’t see it affecting the polling, where Trump is making steady progress and is now leading in some national polls.
Trump may have done more research than people think. He may have taken a look at the Mitt Romney and President Barrack Hussein Obama debates of 2012. Romney won the first one big time, but he didn’t win the election in part because it was the second debate that people remember, where moderator Candy Crowley stepped in to help Obama with misinformation about Obama’s response to the terrorist attack on the American State Department and CIA compounds in Benghazi, Libya.
Which brings up the ever-present fact that when Republicans debate Democrats, they are debating their opponent and the moderator. This one was no different. Why the Republicans don’t insist on unbiased moderators or insist on at least one conservative moderator out of three debates is impossible to understand.
The news media is so in the tank for Hillary Clinton that The New York Times has admitted that its reporters are writing biased articles in favor of Hillary Clinton. This admission is unprecedented by a major newspaper like The New York Times, but it indicates the depths to which journalism has fallen.
When Hillary Clinton talked about the importance of cyber security, why didn’t Holt ask her, if cyber security was so important, why did she use a personal unprotected email server that could be hacked by any of the countries she had just mentioned.
Holt didn’t mind asking Trump follow-up questions about his income tax returns, but when Hillary Clinton talked about the Middle East he didn’t ask her to explain how the whole Benghazi tragedy, which took place on her watch, unfolded – why she allowed it to happen, why she did nothing once the shooting started and why she lied about the cause when, from her emails, we know that she not only knew it was a terrorist attack, she knew which terrorists attacked.
Of course, Trump could have brought up those same issues. Instead Trump allowed himself to get battered by Hillary Clinton and Holt. He weathered the storm. But at the next debate, and at the final debate, it would be good to see Trump not trying to be so nice and being a little more Trump-like. He didn’t get where he is now by being sweet and loving during the Republican primary debates, where he did a much better job of staying on message. Trump had plenty of opportunities to mention “the wall” but he didn’t do it once.
Trump spent too much time playing defense, which he doesn’t do well. But if you don’t want to play defense, you have to play offense, and he refused.
There were so many opportunities. All the talk about his wealth, and his business, but he didn’t even mention Hillary Clinton’s wealth or her family business – the Clinton Foundation.
Trump is an extremely rich man but Hillary Clinton is far richer than all but a tiny percentage of Americans, and she became rich in the past 20 years on the back of the Clinton Foundation.
Trump may or may not pay any personal income taxes, but the Clinton Foundation spends less than 15 percent of its income on charitable programs and 85 percent on administration and other expenses, including flying the Clintons around the world in private jets.
The debate didn’t appear to hurt Trump, and since he is still moving up in the polls and Hillary Clinton is still moving down, it appears that Trump decided to play it safe. He didn’t knock out Hillary Clinton nor did he get knocked out.
It was pretty clear that a lot of Hillary Clinton’s debate preparation involved someone sitting beside her shouting “smile” every time she reeled off one of her memorized answers. If her smile didn’t appear so entirely fake, it may have helped more.
Those of us who find her to be a deplorable person saw a grinning automaton repeating answers she had already said a hundred times that had been carefully prepared by a team of writers who tested their words with focus groups.
In past elections, if you said you were going to raise taxes, you might as well go on home – as Walter Mondale learned the hard way. But this election is so strange that Hillary Clinton can admit that she is going to raise taxes and she’s still in the running.
Trump didn’t even challenge Hillary Clinton when she said his programs would raise the deficit by $5 trillion. No doubt her analysts have come up with those figures, but it is not a fact. Trump could have come back that his analysts say it will reduce the deficit by $10 trillion or whatever he wanted.
Liberals refuse to believe that lowering taxes can result in more investments, a better economy and more revenue. President John Kennedy knew it, but since then the Democrats have insisted that the only way the government can raise more money is to raise taxes, and the economy doesn’t work like that.
Beware the fact checkers, they are simply expressing opinions in a different form.
Trump says that he never supported the war in Iraq. The fact that he did is based on an on-air conversation with Howard Stern in 2002, before the war started, when Trump was asked if he supported the war and he said, “Yea, I guess so.”
At the time Trump was a businessman who had never run for office, had never held office and no one had any reason to believe he would ever run for office. It was an off-the-cuff the remark.
Politicians are expected to have positions on everything, regular citizens are not. “Yea, I guess so” is not a very strong endorsement. It sounds more like someone who hadn’t thought much about it or studied it but didn’t have any reason to oppose what the president and Congress were going to do.
It sounds like once Trump did look into the war he decided that it was bad idea and did oppose the war.
Hillary Clinton by contrast was in the Senate and voted for the war. It’s hard to take an “I guess so” on Howard Stern’s radio show and make it equal to a vote in the US Senate, but that is what the mainstream media, including Holt, have done.
Why didn’t Holt question Hillary Clinton about the Trans-Pacific Partnership, which she did support, the way he questioned Trump about the war in Iraq? The answer is obvious.
The extreme incompetency of the foreign policy of Obama is coming to full fruition as he leaves office. In Syria we are supposed to be backing the Syrian rebels against the government of President Bashar al-Assad and ISIS, but we are also working with the Russians who are backing Assad and fighting ISIS. We back both the Kurds and the Turks, who are fighting each other and fighting ISIS.
In a truly stunning diplomatic blunder, we abandoned the Kurds, who have been the most successful fighters against ISIS, to take the side of Turkey, who wanted territory the Kurds had fought and died to win back from ISIS.
Up until recently Turkey was helping more than hurting ISIS by not patrolling its own border and refusing to go one foot beyond its border to fight ISIS. But Turkey had no problem going beyond its border to fight the Kurds.
Turkey appears far more concerned with an independent Kurdish state than ISIS, but the key to those kinds of diplomatic quandaries is not to get in them in the beginning. Someone in the White House is supposed to be looking a couple of moves ahead, not just responding to what happened yesterday or last week.
The fact that Obama doesn’t take the advice of his military advisors on military matters, but does take the advice of a bunch of folks in the White House with no more military experience than the president himself, has put us where we are now – supporting opposing forces.
Adding to that whole mess is the fact that now that ISIS is losing the oil fields they are, as one might expect, setting them on fire. ISIS doesn’t want their enemies to have the oil, the smoke creates cover from air attacks and now Iraq will have to spend time and money on putting out the fires and getting the wells back into production.
Obama refused to allow the US to bomb the oil wells because he was concerned about the environmental damage. US planes were also not allowed to bomb the tanker trucks unless leaflets were dropped first warning the drivers so they could escape.
If someone is driving a truck full of oil that ISIS owns, and ISIS will get the money from selling the oil, then that driver is a part of ISIS. And if his truck gets blown up and him with it, that is the cost of doing business with the enemy. The money that ISIS made from selling the oil was used to finance its operations, which included torturing and killing innocent civilians, including Americans, in the most horrific ways imaginable.
Fortunately, Russia had no such compunctions about blowing up oil trucks or oil infrastructure and largely shut down the oil production and transport system. There are reasons ISIS has started losing battles, and one of them is that their big source of revenue has been effectively cut off. However, it wasn’t done by the US.
In 2014, when Obama first discovered ISIS was a threat after ISIS took Mosul, Iraq’s second largest city, Obama could have shut down the oil production. It would have greatly hampered ISIS and most likely prevented thousands of people from being tortured and killed. But Obama wouldn’t do it. Instead the US flew lots of sorties over ISIS where not a bomb was dropped. Rather than halting ISIS, it emboldened them. If it had not been for the Kurds, ISIS would have taken far more territory, and then Obama turned his back on the Kurds.
It appears Obama’s goal in the Middle East is to make everyone hate the US more than their sworn enemies. He’s only got three months left, but being the most powerful ruler on earth he may be able to do it.
There is something seriously wrong with Hillary Clinton and it isn’t pneumonia.
I’m not a doctor and I don’t play one on TV, but her symptoms are becoming so obvious that only fools and the mainstream media can still ignore them.
Healthy people, even people with allergies, don’t have hacking coughing attacks for four minutes. Healthy people don’t just fall over and break their elbows and then fall again so severely that it takes six months of hard work to recover from the concussion. Healthy people don’t collapse because they walked out in 80 degree weather. Healthy 68-year-olds can walk up stairs unassisted. Healthy people don’t suddenly start bobbing their heads up and down like a battery powered doll for no apparent reason. Healthy people don’t have their faces freeze in weird expressions.
Healthy people running for president hold press conferences. Healthy presidential candidates two months before Election Day don’t cancel event after event.
A mild case of pneumonia doesn’t explain any of her symptoms, including the hacking cough that was supposed to be caused by allergies, but, when that didn’t fly, the campaign shifted the story to a mild case of pneumonia.
Healthy people do not take their doctors to escort them to events where the most strenuous part is walking on a sidewalk and standing for a half an hour or so.
Polls show that most Americans think that Hillary Clinton has serious health problems. It may be something that she will overcome in the next few weeks or it may be something far more serious, but the American people have a right to know exactly what it is. We don’t need a letter from her doctor saying that she is fine. What the American people deserve is a view of her actual medical records.
Along with that the American people deserve some explanation of why, when Hillary Clinton collapsed and had to be carried by several men into her minivan, instead of taking her to the nearest hospital the Secret Service took Hillary Clinton to her daughter’s apartment to play with her grandchildren. If the Secret Service didn’t know exactly what had caused her to collapse to the point of being carried a few feet to the waiting vehicle, it is a dereliction of duty. They are supposed to be protecting the presidential candidates from harm, not taking a candidate who cannot support herself at all, and has to be carried, to an apartment instead of to the hospital.
Perhaps the congressional committee that overseas the Department of Homeland Security needs to call those agents in to testify about why they wouldn’t take a presidential candidate who had collapsed to the hospital.
I’m tired of reading that Hillary Clinton is the most qualified presidential candidate in decades because she has 40 years of experience. She doesn’t have 40 years of experience as anything other than as a wife.
She served in the US Senate for eight years and as secretary of state for four years; that is 12 years of experience. Her other experience was as the wife of a governor of Arkansas and eight years as wife of the president. Being married to someone in important jobs doesn’t make you qualified to do those jobs.
If I’m having a surgical procedure, I want the surgeon operating on me, not her spouse. The idea that Hillary Clinton has 40 years of experience is absurd.
She does have 40 years of living off the government largess. What young couple can afford 24/7 childcare services like the Clintons had for Chelsea? What young lawyer starting out in practice can afford a team of responsible young men at her beck and call? Hillary Clinton couldn’t afford one, but the State of Arkansas provided a security detail that, according to members of that detail, Hillary Clinton used like personal servants to run errands for her.
Hillary Clinton came to Raleigh this week. I hope she visits North Carolina every week between now and Nov. 8 because she isn’t going to win North Carolina no matter how many times she visits and no matter what the liberal media claim.
The state has voted for the Democratic presidential nominee twice since 1964. North Carolina voted for Jimmy Carter in 1976 over President Gerald Ford, who had been appointed president, and then voted for Obama in 2008.
Obama won in 2008 with massive black voter turnout because he was the first black candidate nominated by a major political party for president. In 2012, North Carolina voted for Mitt Romney because voting to reelect a black president doesn’t have the same cache as electing the first black president.
For some reason that I can’t figure out, North Carolina is considered a purple state, but it isn’t and it isn’t going to vote for Hillary Clinton. The polls in this state tend to show Democratic candidates do better than they perform in the election. So it’s great for Hillary Clinton to waste her time in North Carolina when she could be campaigning in a true battleground state where she has a chance of winning. Every trip she makes here is a trip she’s not making to some state that would help her get elected.
In presidential elections, in most states it doesn’t matter if you win the state by one vote or 1 million votes, you get all the Electoral College votes. Trump may win North Carolina by two points or by eight points, but he’s going to win the state unless something bizarre happens in the next six weeks.
Considering how this election has gone so far, it seems that something bizarre is more likely to happen than not. But it could be something bizarre that damages Clinton’s campaign, like the truth about her health problems being made public.
It is the job of the moderator in a debate to ask questions, keep the candidates to the agreed upon time limits and keep the conversation moving along.
It is not the job of the moderator to fact check, unless they can find a genius moderator who knows everything and is completely unbiased.
Trump gave a much more complete answer about stop and frisk than Holt. The fact that one judge ruled it illegal in New York, doesn’t mean that it is. It means that is one judge’s opinion. Judges opinions are often overturned by courts of appeals and the Supreme Court. If the ruling of one judge was the law of the land then there would be no need for courts of appeals or the Supreme Court.
Trump was correct in that stop and frisk was ruled illegal by one judge and was in the appeals process when Mayor Bill de Blasio decided to drop the appeal. De Blasio is the mayor who believes that not all bombs set off by people in city streets to wound and kill as many fellow Americans as possible are terrorism.
Stop and frisk is unsettled law. In this case Trump gave an answer and was challenged and gave a more complete and the correct answer. Holt was wrong, but that is no surprise.
Hillary Clinton is going after Trump because she says he didn’t pay any taxes in the two years of tax returns that are available to the public. Trump should have responded, “Do you pay more in taxes than you owe?”
Who pays more taxes than they have to? If Trump’s team of accountants and lawyers could figure out a way for him not to pay any income taxes, is that wrong? Isn’t that what we all do ourselves when we file taxes, try to figure out how little we can legally pay?
Not many people figure out how to pay more taxes. We take all the deductions that we can to lower our taxes. If Trump is able to lower his taxes to zero, then that could be interpreted to mean that there is something wrong with the tax system, not something wrong with Trump.
In fact, we all know that there is an enormous amount wrong with the tax system. For one thing, nobody understands it. The tax laws are so complicated and convoluted that different tax experts can come up with completely different answers when figuring out the same tax return.
The whole flat tax movement is based on the idea that the tax system is too complicated and it would be better for everyone to simply pay the same percentage without all the deductions, tax credits and the like.
It is the same argument for Trump taking companies into bankruptcy. He was taking advantage of the laws. In one case he took a company into bankruptcy to get out of a union contract when he believed he was paying way too much and the unions refused to negotiate. It sounds like good business, but then what does Hillary Clinton know about business?
It has been well documented that the Internal Revenue Service under Obama has gone after conservative groups. Now it appears Obama is using the Labor Department to go after a prominent Trump supporter, Peter Thiel.
Thiel’s company, Palantir Technologies, is being sued by the Department of Labor for discriminating against Asians, despite the fact that 44 percent of Palantir’s software engineers are Asian. Evidently, according to the Labor Department, 44 percent is not enough because 85 percent of the applicant pool was made up of Asians.
It would appear that Palantir was supposed to hire every Asian who applied for a job.
It is a clear case of Obama using the power of the federal government to go after political enemies just like he used the IRS.
Even for Obama, going after someone who spoke at the Republican National Convention on such shaky grounds is a stretch.
But with only a few months in office left, Obama knows that he can do whatever he wants with no repercussions.
It should inspire Thiel to work even harder for Trump because if Trump is elected the lawsuit will be dropped, and if Hillary Clinton is elected, who knows, she may double down and bring even more lawsuits.
Things are starting to get really scary. It’s bad enough that we have a bunch of homegrown radical Islamic terrorists, but it appears the military may have been bringing some terrorists into the country and training them.
Seven Afghan nationals disappeared from US military training camps this month. It’s not unusual for foreigners brought here for military training to disappear. It’s usually a case where they have decided that they would rather live in the US then their home country.
What makes this different and raises red flags is that all seven are from Afghanistan and left their military bases at about the same time.
Everybody knows that the Obama administration makes no attempt to vet immigrants from countries with known terrorist activity. But when the US is bringing soldiers in for military training, it seems like even Obama would see the sense in making certain that they don’t want to come to the US to harm Americans.
Ahmad Rahami, who has been charged with planting the bombs in New Jersey and New York, was born in Afghanistan and went back to Afghanistan for a year as an adult, where he is suspected of going to a terrorist training camp.
Three of the Afghans who are missing left the weekend of those bombings, which raises more concerns.
ISIS military commander Gulmurod Khalimov reportedly attended several State Department antiterrorism programs before joining ISIS.