So two nights ago we had the first of three Presidential debates and… well… it sure was something.
Interestingly, the first impressions seemed to be: “Well, that was a shitshow” with the implication being both candidates, Trump and Biden, didn’t do much for themselves…
But, as is usually the case, after some reflection, the immediate reactions went away and a consensus built that Trump was the deranged one, especially toward the very end of the debate when he couldn’t get himself to speak ill of the far right-wing Proud Boys.
Further to that, though, was a feeling that Trump was flailing and interrupting, perhaps desperately so, because either a) he realizes he’s losing and wanted to claim every moment of the debate or b) he’s just that desperate for attention.
Regardless, the next day evaluation seems to be that Trump was the one that looked terrible in the debate. Polls bore this out, with most feeling that Biden “won” simply by not taking the bait, even though he did lose his patience at a couple of points and not only told Trump to “shut up” but also called him a “bozo”.
Certainly never saw anything like that in a Presidential debate before!
If we were to look past the highlights, however, there was plenty of other strange stuff Trump said during the debates. While they may not be quite as startling as being unable to say anything negative about the Proud Boys, it was nonetheless startling.
Ben Mattis-Lilley over at Slate.com offers this list of…
Eight things that were somehow not takeaways from the debate because everything else was so deranged
My favorite bit was this, presented at the very end of the article:
This was, according to Trump, one of the reasons he should be reelected:
“The greatest, before COVID came in, the greatest economy in history, lowest unemployment numbers, everything was good. Everything was going—and by the way, there was unity going to happen. People were calling me, for the first time in years, they were calling and they were saying, ‘It’s time, maybe.’ And then what happened? We got hit.“
Time for what? And who was calling? Unfortunately, we will never know, because we got hit.