October 7, 2016


Donald Trump Held What Appeared to Be a Public Debate Prep Session, and It Went Terribly (Margaret Hartmann, 10/07/16, New York)

In what is either another remarkable blunder or a masterful bit of lowering expectations, on Thursday night in New Hampshire Donald Trump held a public practice session for his town-hall-style debate with Hillary Clinton this Sunday. [...]

• Trump said he would take 20 questions, but he only took about a dozen. The event lasted 30 minutes, while the debate will be 90 minutes with no break.

• As CNN notes, "Rather than working the room, Trump remained standing in the same spot, just a few feet from Carr who read off the questions Trump's supporters had submitted."

• Carr offered Trump words of encouragement while questioning him, and some people prefaced their questions by shouting things like, "Make America Great Again!" "I like this audience," Trump said. "I like this audience."

• Trump was asked softball questions, such as "What would you say to convince Hispanics who are deceived by Obama, Clinton, and the biased media to vote for you?" and "What is your favorite childhood memory? Go Donald."

• He frequently went off on tangents and didn't really answer the few specific policy questions he received.

• He complained that Clinton got easier questions in the first debate. "She gets easy ones," he said. "By the way, have you noticed the difference? I'm getting boom, boom, boom. With her, 'What would you do to fix the economy?' Of course, that's actually a much tougher question than you would understand, and she doesn't have a clue, but you see the questions I was getting."

• He attacked journalists John King and John Harwood, as well as Senator Mark Kirk, a Republican who does not support him.

• He attacked Clinton, claiming that she is "resting" rather than doing debate prep. "She wants to build up her energy for Sunday night," he said.

• He kicked things off by attacking the nonpartisan Commission on Presidential Debates, saying, "Give me a break. Did you see where they came from, one of them comes from the Hillary camp, the head person."

Posted by at October 7, 2016 8:00 AM