According to CNN, Monday night’s debate between Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton and Republican candidate Donald Trump was the most watched debate in history.
What the debate turned out to be was an exercise in fitting one of the ugliest elections in history into a 90-minute time limit while each candidate measured out their allotted seconds to get in every possible quip and jab.
The Trump campaign had worked tirelessly in the past few weeks to lower expectations. It was at the point that all Trump had to do to be declared the victor was to walk on stage and not immediately pass out.
Clinton, on the other job had a more difficult task before her.
She had to be prepared, but not arrogant. She had to stand her ground, but not be stand offish.
She had to smile and laugh, but also take the debate seriously. Clinton was able to rise to the task, but Trump somehow still missed the bar.
Lester Holt of NBC Nightly News was the moderator for Monday night’s debate.
He allowed Trump to go on the attack instead of defending his own policies. Mr. Holt, who Donald Trump accused of being a Democrat earlier this week, allowed Trump to continually interrupt Hillary Clinton and eat into her allotted time.
Don’t get me wrong, Donald Trump had a lot to say. Word salad, if you will.
He tossed out key words such as “jobs, China, trade, business,” hoping to at least catch someone’s ear.
Trump stood at the podium waving his arms, interrupting Mrs. Clinton, shouting, and sometimes sniffling.
This sort of behavior helped Trump sail through the Republican primaries when none of his opponents were as poised or prepared as Secretary Clinton.
Trump could have used the debate to redeem his campaign, which many have said is empty of any real policies or ideas.
This was his chance to put forward concrete plans for his vision of America.
Instead Mr. Trump used his time to attack Hillary Clinton and her political positions.
This should not be enough to carry a candidate to the presidency.
Clinton acted very presidential in this first debate.
She provided clear policy points and detailed parts of plans that she would use to achieve her stated goals.
There were times, however, when Clinton used political maneuvering to get around some touchy subjects.
For instance, when she jumped through hoops to avoid discussing her stance on the Trans-Pacific Partnership, or when she stated, “I have a plan,” instead of dealing with the live raw emotions surrounding some of the issues.
The difference between the two candidates is apparent.
You have Donald Trump, the political novice who treats his inexperience as a good thing.
On the other hand, you have Hillary Clinton, an accomplished politician who uses her experience to maneuver in the political arena.
For me, and many others, Clinton rose to the occasion and was the victor of the first presidential debate.