2016 Presidential Debate #3, Trump v. Clinton (University of Nevada, Las Vegas): Live Blog

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By Lambert Strether of Corrente.

The third Presidential debate will be held at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas at 9PM EST — less than a half-hour from now! — and will run 90 minutes with no commercial interruptions. Chris Wallace of FOX News will moderate, and has selected the following six topics: “Debt and entitlements [groan]; immigration; the economy; the Supreme Court; foreign hot spots; and ‘fitness to be President.'” Here are some viewing options.

Meanwhile,”Jill Stein Is Hosting A Presidential Debate Of Her Very Own To Rival Hillary Clinton & Donald Trump’s” (Bustle) on Facebook or YouTube.

Pre-game festivities:

“Presidential debate: What to watch for in the last Clinton-Trump face-off” CNN. “Clinton is posed to pivot any WikiLeaks talk to Russia.” So surely Trump is prepared for this?

4 Things To Watch In The Last Presidential Debate NPR. “The Las Vegas debate will give her a chance to explain why she was so chummy with Wall Street bankers when they were paying her hundreds of thousands of dollars to speak to them.” So surely Trump is prepared for this?

What Hillary Clinton must accomplish in the last debate LA Times. “Yes, she called half of [Trump voters] ‘deplorables.’ She might even want to apologize for that — no matter how deplorable the slogans on some of their T-shirts are.” Fantasy!

Presidential Debate: How Will Trump and Clinton Handle Sexual Assault Allegations? NYT. “How he and Mrs. Clinton approach the debate in Las Vegas will go a long way in determining just how sordid the remainder of this race will be — and how difficult the healing process will be once it ends.” Gawd, “the healing process.” The Times is getting worse and worse.

In case you can’t bear to watch, but want to hang out in the comments section, here’s another Rube Goldberg device:

(I had no idea Rube Goldberg devices would be a genre on YouTube, but they are!)

Please add your comments as the debate proceeds!

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About Lambert Strether

Readers, I have had a correspondent characterize my views as realistic cynical. Let me briefly explain them. I believe in universal programs that provide concrete material benefits, especially to the working class. Medicare for All is the prime example, but tuition-free college and a Post Office Bank also fall under this heading. So do a Jobs Guarantee and a Debt Jubilee. Clearly, neither liberal Democrats nor conservative Republicans can deliver on such programs, because the two are different flavors of neoliberalism (“Because markets”). I don’t much care about the “ism” that delivers the benefits, although whichever one does have to put common humanity first, as opposed to markets. Could be a second FDR saving capitalism, democratic socialism leashing and collaring it, or communism razing it. I don’t much care, as long as the benefits are delivered. To me, the key issue — and this is why Medicare for All is always first with me — is the tens of thousands of excess “deaths from despair,” as described by the Case-Deaton study, and other recent studies. That enormous body count makes Medicare for All, at the very least, a moral and strategic imperative. And that level of suffering and organic damage makes the concerns of identity politics — even the worthy fight to help the refugees Bush, Obama, and Clinton’s wars created — bright shiny objects by comparison. Hence my frustration with the news flow — currently in my view the swirling intersection of two, separate Shock Doctrine campaigns, one by the Administration, and the other by out-of-power liberals and their allies in the State and in the press — a news flow that constantly forces me to focus on matters that I regard as of secondary importance to the excess deaths. What kind of political economy is it that halts or even reverses the increases in life expectancy that civilized societies have achieved? I am also very hopeful that the continuing destruction of both party establishments will open the space for voices supporting programs similar to those I have listed; let’s call such voices “the left.” Volatility creates opportunity, especially if the Democrat establishment, which puts markets first and opposes all such programs, isn’t allowed to get back into the saddle. Eyes on the prize! I love the tactical level, and secretly love even the horse race, since I’ve been blogging about it daily for fourteen years, but everything I write has this perspective at the back of it.


  1. EndOfTheWorld

    Trump should be ready for the Russia thing. I expect him to clearly delineate himself from HRC by saying he really really really wants no war with Russia. in fact, he’s already said if he’s elected he will meet with Putin before he’s even inaugurated. It’s a winning position for Trump. People hate war.

    1. Bjornasson

      I am skeptical of how much that will win over people in Hillary’s base, since many well-to-do liberals I know swallow the Putin-is-evil propaganda without question and consider the threat of nuclear war as a distant, impossible thing. For them Trump is an immediate, concrete threat and bad relations with Russia leading to nuclear war a considerably more abstract proposition.

        1. albrt

          I’ve heard the same thing.

          But sometimes a little bit ends up on your clothes no matter how hard you try.

          I heard the same thing happened when President Obama allowed Lloyd Blankfein to sit at the desk in the Oval Office, but nobody ever thought to test President Obama’s blue suit.

      1. Tom Allen

        …[T]he 1980s, they’re now calling to ask for their foreign policy back because, you know, the Cold War’s been over for 20 years.

        — Barack Obama to Mitt Romney, in the final presidential debate of 2012.

        1. Knot Galt

          Ahh, the wit of Obama! It is a vast wasteland when it comes to such pithy responses from the Clinton Camp? Clinton has neither the temperament nor personality to be a 21st century leader.

  2. Bjornasson

    I propose a drinking game: a shot of vodka every time Hillary mentions Russia.

    If you want to pace yourself, a shot of vodka every time she talks about Russian aggression in Syria.

    1. HotFlash

      Sounds fine, but what should trigger a shot of Jack Daniels? Or a chug of Bud? Since all groups and income brackets should be able to play.

      1. Bjornasson

        He doesn’t seem to be sniffing so much today … so there goes one idea.
        I think you NEED a shot of Jack Daniels every time Hillary laughs derisively after a Trump answer.
        As for beer chugs, every time Trump repeats himself within 2 sentences?

        1. HotFlash

          Done! And some peach schnapps if Healthcare is mentioned, by any name (the Healthcare, not the schnapps). I will report back tomorrow, if able.

  3. Lee

    I may switch to watching Call the Midwife on PBS after the first hour so as to restore my faith in humanity and universal national healthcare, instituted in the UK seven decades ago during the years of extreme postwar austerity while we trudge along here in “never ever” land.

  4. Fastball

    I notice there is no talk in the debates about Climate Change. And it wasn’t even in the listed “top 10 most important unaddressed things” by MSNBC.

    Possibly the most fraught issue of our time, and the Clinton/Trump debates can’t even mention it. Nor do the media consider it important at all, despite the fact that it may annihilate humanity.

    Or .. did I miss the candidates dismissing it?

    1. IowanX

      Chris Wallace doesn’t know a damn thing about climate change, and didn’t want to look it up. Therefore, not a topic. His bosses didn’t want him to look it up either.

  5. alex morfesis

    show time at the apollo…mike check 123

    and $hillary with a knuckleball response to the first question…the question was an adjustable breathing constitution or static founding fathers words in granite…

  6. frosty zoom

    wow, the intro!

    i wish i had surround sound for this!


    is this a michael bay production?

  7. Bjornasson

    “Where do you wanna see the Court take the country?”

    I may be confused because, as someone from India, I still haven’t entirely gotten used to the system of supreme court appointments in the USA. Doesn’t this undermine the system of checks and balances that this the whole reason behind the separation of judiciary, executive and legislature?

    1. John

      The Supreme Court Justices all rule for the state over the people, and the corporations over the state.
      So don’t think too hard about it.

    2. Synoia

      The President Nominates replacement Justices, the Senate Approves or Disapproves, then they are on the Court until impeached, retire or die.

      As the Court they are theoretically independent of the Executive (President) and Legislature (Senate and House).

    3. Lee

      The president nominates then the senate confirms or doesn’t. The court then decides whether or not laws passed by both houses of congress and signed by the president are constitutional.

      1. Bjornasson

        Thanks to you and Synoia for the clarification! The whole focus on Supreme Court nominations as a subject for presidential debates is very disproportionate compared to what I have seen in India. I just find the whole idea about the President/Head of State influencing the direction that the SC takes the country very peculiar ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ .

          1. Bjornasson

            Appointed by the President (Constitutional Head of State, appointed by the Upper House) in consultation with the Chief Justice of India and state governor (state equivalent of the President). Usually seniority is the chief consideration.
            The CJI is de facto the senior-most Supreme Court justice. Only time this convention was subverted was when Indira Gandhi was in power (known for declaring the Emergency of 1975-77).

    1. Pat


      I don’t know what bothers me more. That Clinton thinks that the audience will not go “what!?!” to that, or that they might not.

    2. Lambert Strether Post author

      Well, “the Supreme Court follows the election returns.”

      But that Clinton appears to regard the SC as a representative body is odd. She also no doubt views her own party faction as representative of the United States as a whole, which isn’t odd, but rather assumes a lot.

      1. Phil

        Hi Lambert: I enjoy your work.

        Question: How is the Supreme Court – in reality – not a representative body re: the spectrum of positions and beliefs held within the left-right spectrum. I don’t think we should pretend that SCOTUS judges are immune from most forms of human cognitive distortion and implicit bias, one way or another. They are not machines. In fact, all decisions made by humans make their last pass through emotional centers in the human brain.

        People can *work* at the principle of objectivity, but we are not hard wired in ways that make anyone truly “objective”

  8. Lee

    Clinton: Citizens United “undermined” our democratic system. So, in other words, the system is indeed rigged. Glad they agree on something.

  9. Lambert Strether

    Supreme Court….

    CLINTON Clinton Need Supreme Court stand up for women LBTQ, stand up on Citiznes United [chutzpah]

    Not reverse Roe v Wade, not reverse marriage inequality, stand up and say Supreme Court should represent all of us

    TRUMP What it’s all about. Imperative have right justice. Ginsberg forced to apologize for statements she made

    Uphold Second Amendment, which is under seige. Justices I name pro-life, great scholars, interpret the way the Founders waned it interpreted. Constitution way it was meant to be…

    * * *

    Clinton “stand up” often punched…

      1. Lambert Strether Post author

        Thanks. Not easy to capture all this live typing. I do it partly for the record but partly because it’s the best way to fix what they actually said in my mind.

  10. TheCatSaid

    Is it just me, or does this seem like nothing related to what either one would do as president? Just a show. A weird kind of reality show.

    Clinton’s doing word soup about 2nd amendment etc. saying nothing.

    Wallace sounds a little nervous.

    Trump sounds calm, portrays Clinton as “extremely upset”. Painting her as overly emotional. Sexist.

      1. Lambert Strether Post author

        Both playing to their bases on that one. Log jam on both. On abortion, some thoughts:

        We can contrast two great social movements from the 60s onward: One is the movement that now goes under the heading of “gay marriage,” but where the grand and courageous process of “coming out” worked from the bottom up over time, and where ACT-UP (now almost forgotten) did great work on HIV. the second is the movement that goes under the heading of “abortion,” where Roe v. Wade came from the top down, and was imposed on populations that didn’t support it, and resisted it. The first movement, working from the bottom up using democratic methods, was amazingly successful. The second movement, relying on the authority of credentialed professionals on the Court, and the Democrat nomenklatura (e.g., Planned Parenthood), and so using technocratic methods, was far less successful.

        We might ask ourselves which women are being protected. And the answer is right in ObamaCare, which incorporates the Hyde Amendment. So we can see the differential access right there. While I cannot say that the Democrats aren’t protecting any working class women’s right to abortion, I]m guessing that in practice the protection is heavily skewed toward the 10%-er women in Clinton’s base.

    1. Lambert Strether Post author

      And she keeps repeating DiFi’s concept of using the no-fly list, which is a terrible idea because the list is bad data. Even if the House Democrats did stage their now forgotten fake sit-in over it.

  11. Lambert Strether

    CLINTON Respect Second Amendment. But 33K year die, need background checks, close loopholes, sensible reforms that do not conflict.

    Heller: Disagree with SC application in that case. DC wanted to protect toddlers, a reasonable regulation

    WALLACE How will you ensure 2A protected?

    TRUMP SHe was angry when Heller came down. Scalia well-crafted.

    W Were you upset?

    CLINTON Yes bc toddlers kill people with guns. No doubt I respect 2A and right to bear arms. No conflict w sensible regulation. I understand Donald is funded by NRA and running millions of ads against me.

    W You support a national right to carry law?

    TRUMP Chicago toughest laws, more violence than any other city. I support 2A, very proud to have the NRA endorsement. We are going to appoint justices that will feel strongly about 2A, won’t damage it.

    1. optimader

      gun safety training for toddlers!
      She is apparently geographically constrained on her outraged\ RE: violent toddler deaths

      1. Lambert Strether Post author

        As I’ve said, I think “sensible regulation” would be a licensing process similar to cars. But nothing like that is on offer from Clinton. I hate all the pro-gun arguments, and open carry is a bridge too far for me, but at this point I wouldn’t trust the Acela Corridor types to run a candy store…..

    1. 3.14e-9

      I’m watching with a former TV producer who just pointed out that they’ve got soft light on her and hard light on him.

      1. Susan C

        I noticed that too, this debate and the last one. She has that Doris Day’ish type of look and he looks pale. The lighting –

  12. Lambert Strether

    W Do you want the justices to overturn Roe v Wade?

    TRUMP If that happens, would go back to the states.

    W Do you want to see the court overturn Roe v Wade?

    TRUMP That will happen when I appoint pro-life judges

    CLINTON Strongly support Roe v Wade. IN this case, not only Roe v Wade, about what’s happening right now. So many states put regulations that block R v W. Defund Planned Parenthood! We’ve come to far to turn back, indeed he said women should be punished and I could not be more opposed

    W How far do you believe right goes? Fetus has no constitutional rights? “Partial birth?”

    CLINTON Life and health of the mother. Cases at the end of pregnancy are the most heartbreaking. I do not think the US govt should be making those most personal of decisions. Can regulate w life and health abortion

    TRUMP If you go, in the ninth month you can rip the baby out of the womb of the baby. Hillary can say that’s OK but it’s not OK with me.

    CLINTON Not what happens and “scare rhetoric” terribly unfortunate. Terrible choice, govt shouldn’t make it. Travelled world where women forced to bear children, like China and Romania.

    TRUMP Nobody has business doing [what I described].

    1. WJ

      Wallace: Irrespective of whether you believe the fetus has a right to life, what is your view on its right to bear arms?

      Trump: Hillary is angry about fetuses carrying firearms, but under my administration every fetus will be issued a firearm during the second trimester, which will also protect against partial birth abortions.

      Clinton: Chris, the relationship between a fetus and the second amendment is deeply personal and in cases where the health of the mother is at stake I recognize the tragic need for fetal firearms even as I affirm that background checks are tragic and medical. I have always held this view.

    1. Kim Kaufman

      and from doctors and Big Pharma pushing it. Marijuana appears to be better for pain and less harmful.

  13. TheCatSaid

    Trump fear mongering immigrants people kill people. Sheesh.

    Talking about heroin flooding across the southern border. I bet he won’t mention the prescription opiate issue.

  14. Patricia

    Abortion, drugs and guns–cuz that’s mostly all that happens around here. (‘Snarfle’) (‘you know’)

  15. John

    There is no way the 11 million figure is real. No way.
    They have been telling us it’s 11 million for over 3 decades.

    It’s got to be over 30 million by now.

  16. TheCatSaid

    Trump says “bad bad bad”

    Clinton – on immigration starts with things that sound sane then goes all cerebral, just more word soup. She doesn’t know when to shut up.

    1. Bjornasson

      That “she always supported the wall, never gets anything done so no wall” was quite adroit

  17. TheCatSaid

    Both trying so hard to be controlled.
    Clinton can’t resist gleeful smirk, she can throw in some of her prepared remarks.

  18. Lee

    Okay, get the current 15 million out of the shadows so as to eliminate their downward pressure on wages. Then what?

  19. John

    Everyone these two know uses illegals as their nannies, cooks, drivers, house cleaners, gardeners etc.

  20. TheCatSaid

    He says she’ll be a disaster with open borders and she gets her big grin again.

    It’s a game of facial expression and emotive words.

  21. TheCatSaid

    ooh-Clinton’s already on wikileaks and Russia and Putin.
    17 intelligence people have supposedly confirmed they were trying to change the election.

    Trump–great calling her out on her pivot off the borders.

    1. Bjornasson

      “You encouraged espionage of our people”

      I remember Hillary calling for a bolstering of NSA surveillance efforts after Orlando?

    2. Lambert Strether Post author

      > 17 intelligence people

      Has anybody actually gone on the record? I haven’t seen it, but it’s possible I missed it.

      I mean, 17 anonymous individuals and a dime will buy you a cup of coffee…

  22. HBE

    These debates seem to be mainly focused on scaring each tribe into showing up to vote there is certainly no appeal to independents by either side.

    Hillary really gave the liberals a good he’s Hitler scare on immigration, “round them up”, “put them on trains”, hmm I wonder what focus groups said those phrases reminded them of.

    Of course no mention that Obama has deported more people than any other president.

    1. weylier

      This is a losing strategy for Hillary. Gary Johnson is drawing more support away from Trump, than Jill Stein is drawing from Hillary. (This is assuming you ascribe to the notion that third parties draw support away from the two main parties, which is not entirely true — but I think it is true to some extent for Johnson.)

    2. John

      I don’t know anyone on the Left who is for having millions of illegals in this country taking jobs from Americans.

        1. John k

          Any job an illegal gets is a job a legal could have had, albeit at a higher wage.
          This includes apple picking and all the others.
          And the legal Hispanics and others have all worked this out.

          1. John Zelnicker

            When Alabama passed laws against undocumented immigrants, the tomatoes rotted on the plants because no one else would do the work, even at higher wages.

            1. Yves Smith

              I’ve pointed that out, but that is because the wages weren’t high enough because….drumroll….those farmers competed with farmers in other states that can and do hire illegal workers.

              So this isn’t a valid test of what would happen if you shut down the seasonal worker flow on a widespread basis. You probably would have a very painful transition the first year as farmers tried bidding for workers and bid too low.

              When I was a kid, lots of kids picked strawberries in the summer. Not terribly pleasant work but reasonably paid and only a few weeks. You could probably get teenagers in the summer for crops that had short harvest windows.

              1. Ivy

                Picking various crops meant new school clothes and a new bicycle for many kids back in the day. There was a sense of camaraderie and shared experience that made the work seem easier, and some brought transistor radios to provide background music. People generally had a good time and kids saw the work ethic in action.

                1. Cry Shop

                  My father sent us to work in the fields so we’d learn some empathy for the extremely poor agricultural workers. Before he passed on, he told me not to do it, to find another way. The wide spread use of agricultural chemicals has made working as a ag labour a sure ride to cancer, birth defects and general decline in health for their already short and squalid lives.

                  Unfortunately, those mom & pop farms that would not knowingly poison their neighbors, that were part of the community, are rare, though the green/local food movement that Michael Pollan’s writing is helping popularize is an attempt to work against that tide.

              2. John Zelnicker

                @Yves – Of course. Thank you for reminding me that the issue cannot be seen in isolation. I knew the Alabama farmers were constrained by the prices they could get in the market, but failed to make the connection to out-of-state competition.

        2. John

          Guess you never had to work those jobs to survive;
          manual labor jobs like construction and working in a restaurant and just about anything else that the little people do.
          Now most Americans can’t get hired at those jobs.
          They go to illegals.

    3. ggm

      Clinton wants to rip babies from their mother’s wombs and Trump wants to tear families apart through deportation. Who are these people??

      Trump did finally mention Hillary’s border wall vote and Obama’s deportations. Literally Hitlers.

  23. Lee

    Clinton’s pivot from “hemisphere without borders” to Wikileaks/Russia/Putin interfering with out democracy. Pathetic. The audience found it laughable.

  24. TheCatSaid

    Trump’s digs are more effective–short, clear words. “She’s the puppet”
    Clinton’s ideas are sometimes better but it’s overly cerebral and too word-soupy.

    Trump – “Putin has outsmarted her in Syria”, etc. etc.

  25. alex morfesis

    she just lied about nuclear weapons…the secty of defense has to approve…she…is…well…she always lies so what else is new…

  26. Jolly Tommo

    As in first debate Trump holds it together for about half an hour and then starts to throw a wobbly.

    1. Lambert Strether Post author

      I thought Trump kept good control all the way through. When they both got into it and started over-riding Wallace it felt like they were each giving as good as they got.

  27. TheCatSaid

    War of the numbers. Clinton says 10 people have said they shouldn’t press the nuclear button. Trump says he has 21 generals supporting him.

    Now he’s saying this is just another lie by her–not sure what, exactly.

    1. Lambert Strether Post author

      This strikes me as the Rovian strategy of attacking your enemy’s strength.

      I’m not sure why anybody would feel Clinton is less likely to press the button; Iraq, Honduras, Libya all testify to her record of successfully inducing wars, and she’s trying again by proposing a no-fly zone in Syria. There’s a reason all the neocons jumped the Republican ship and joined the Clinton campaign.

  28. Lambert Strether

    W Immigration. Trump wall, Clinton 100 days include pathway to citizenship

    TRUMP Amnesty unfair to people waiting in line for years. In audience 4 mothers killed by illegal immigrants. We have no country if we have no borders. Border control and ICE endorsed me. It means their job is tougher. They want strong borders. Up NH, single biggest problem heroin, poisoning the blood of our youth. Strong borders, amnesty, ICE, they all want the wall [Trump starts sniffing]. When the border is secured, we’ll make a determination [about the rest of it]

    CLINTON Carla, worried she was born here, parents were not. I don’t want to see parents separated from children. 11M undocumented, 4 million children. Would need a massive law enforcement presence to round up the undocumented, then put them on trains and buses. Not in keeping with who we are, would rip our country apart. Voted for border security. My comprehensive plan includes border security. Get rid of violent. Trump went to Mexico, didn’t mention the wall, got into a twitter war

    TRUMP Mexican President nice man, CLinton fought for the wall in 2006 but she never gets anything done so naturally it was’t built

    WALL I voted for border security. It is clear what Donald has a different view of what to do. Bring undocumented out of the shadows. Donald used undocumented workers to build Trump tower. Don’t want employers to exploit.

    TRUMP Under Obama millions have already been moved out. We’re a country of laws. We either have a border or we don’t. MIllions in line and waiting and unfair to have open borders, also a disaster on trade. Obama has deported millions

    CLINTON Open borders a rank mistatement. Used to be partisan

    W $225K from bank stpeech, “my dream is open trade and open borders”

    CLINTON I was talking about energy [!!]. I want an electric grid. Wikileaks has engaged in espionage against Americans. Hacked and given info. Clearly from Putin himself, as 17 intel officials say Most important question: Will Trump admit and condemn Russians have done this. Those are the questions we need answered

    TRUMP Big pivot she wants open borders. How’d we get to Putin

    W [dithers]

    TRUMP She wants open borders, 550% [more Syrians]. If Russia and US got along and went after ISIS that would be good.

    TRUMP 1800 nuclear warheads and she’s playing chicken.

    CLINTON He’s rather have a puppet

    TRUMP You’re the puppet

    CLINTON You are willing to sign up for Putin’s wish list. He has a clear favorite. We’ve never had a foreign govt try to interfere. 17 agencies all conclude highest levels Russian

    TRUMP SHe has no idea if it’s Russia or China

    CLINTON 17 agents sworn to protect

    TRUMP Putin has outsmarted her every step of the way. In Syria–

    W Even if you don’t know who, do you condemn?

    TRUMP Of course I condemn. If we were friends with Russian. Putin has outsmarted them at every step of the way. All you have to do is look at the Middle East. We’ve spent six trillion dollars and they’ve taken over the middle east

    CLINTON I find it ironiic she’s raised nuclear weapons since he’s been cavalier. Bottom line on nuclear weapons When President gives order it must be followed. 4 minutes between order and launch. 10 people who had responsibility would not trust Turmp

    TRUMP 200 generals endorse. As far as Japan and other countries, all I said is we have to renegotiate [can’t afford].

    Look, she’s been proven to be a liar in so many ways.

    TRUMP US has kep the peace through our alliances. They’ve made us safer.

  29. Lambert Strether

    W Immigration. Trump wall, Clinton 100 days include pathway to citizenship

    TRUMP Amnesty unfair to people waiting in line for years. In audience 4 mothers killed by illegal immigrants. We have no country if we have no borders. Border control and ICE endorsed me. It means their job is tougher. They want strong borders. Up NH, single biggest problem heroin, poisoning the blood of our youth. Strong borders, amnesty, ICE, they all want the wall [Trump starts sniffing]. When the border is secured, we’ll make a determination [about the rest of it]

    CLINTON Carla, worried she was born here, parents were not. I don’t want to see parents separated from children. 11M undocumented, 4 million children. Would need a massive law enforcement presence to round up the undocumented, then put them on trains and buses. Not in keeping with who we are, would rip our country apart. Voted for border security. My comprehensive plan includes border security. Get rid of violent. Trump went to Mexico, didn’t mention the wall, got into a twitter war

    TRUMP Mexican President nice man, CLinton fought for the wall in 2006 but she never gets anything done so naturally it was’t built

    WALL I voted for border security. It is clear what Donald has a different view of what to do. Bring undocumented out of the shadows. Donald used undocumented workers to build Trump tower. Don’t want employers to exploit.

    TRUMP Under Obama millions have already been moved out. We’re a country of laws. We either have a border or we don’t. MIllions in line and waiting and unfair to have open borders, also a disaster on trade. Obama has deported millions

    CLINTON Open borders a rank mistatement. Used to be partisan

    W $225K from bank stpeech, “my dream is open trade and open borders”

    CLINTON I was talking about energy [!!]. I want an electric grid. Wikileaks has engaged in espionage against Americans. Hacked and given info. Clearly from Putin himself, as 17 intel officials say Most important question: Will Trump admit and condemn Russians have done this. Those are the questions we need answered

    TRUMP Big pivot she wants open borders. How’d we get to Putin

    W [dithers]

    TRUMP She wants open borders, 550% [more Syrians]. If Russia and US got along and went after ISIS that would be good.

    TRUMP 1800 nuclear warheads and she’s playing chicken.

    CLINTON He’s rather have a puppet

    TRUMP You’re the puppet

    CLINTON You are willing to sign up for Putin’s wish list. He has a clear favorite. We’ve never had a foreign govt try to interfere. 17 agencies all conclude highest levels Russian

    TRUMP SHe has no idea if it’s Russia or China

    CLINTON 17 agents sworn to protect

    TRUMP Putin has outsmarted her every step of the way. In Syria–

    W Even if you don’t know who, do you condemn?

    TRUMP Of course I condemn. If we were friends with Russian. Putin has outsmarted them at every step of the way. All you have to do is look at the Middle East. We’ve spent six trillion dollars and they’ve taken over the middle east

    CLINTON I find it ironiic she’s raised nuclear weapons since he’s been cavalier. Bottom line on nuclear weapons When President gives order it must be followed. 4 minutes between order and launch. 10 people who had responsibility would not trust Turmp

    TRUMP 200 generals endorse. As far as Japan and other countries, all I said is we have to renegotiate [can’t afford].

    Look, she’s been proven to be a liar in so many ways.

    CLINTON US has kept the peace through our alliances. They’ve made us safer.

    1. Ivy

      Clinton seemed to almost tear up a little when she heard a particularly damning salvo, as when Wallace asked about Bill, and then she pivoted. Her wet eyes were a tell.

  30. TheCatSaid

    Wallace is nervous. You can tell he feels what happens in the election will depend on his performance as moderator.

    1. Qrys

      Wallace is doing a good job framing the questions as polarities subtly favoring the conservative position.

      1. different clue

        And whose position is the conservative position? Trump’s? Or Clinton’s? And conservative of what?

  31. TheCatSaid

    Weird that after Trump had mentioned twice he’d want to work with Russia, then Clinton said he’d want to tear up his agreements.

  32. Bjornasson

    Both are really solidifying their anti-status quo and pro-status quo credentials. No one who still professes to be undecided is going to be convinced beyond their own pre-conceived tendencies.

  33. TheCatSaid

    It’s so surreal. now Trump is on about horrible deals, how to get paid by foreign countries like Saudi Arabia. Making a great deal with NAFTA.

    Now Clinton “will translate”–he says “You can’t”.

    1. jrs

      He really should push on the TPP, not decades old deals, but he’s just not that smart. Where the ball is going to be and all that.

  34. TheCatSaid

    Trump says Wallace is “correct” (during his debt/bailout related question to Clinton), with big grin/smirk, some laughter from audience at how he got that in there.

    Clinton feels like she’s on the defensive about her budget’s ability to get the economy moving.

  35. alex morfesis

    $hillary…has there ever been an economic crash anywhere in the world where the clowns who were running the show/economy into the ground were allowed and continue to be allowed to run the show…??

    usually it is off with their heads…even if it is symbolic…

    here…not so much…

    1. TheCatSaid

      Depends what you mean by “doing well”. He’s holding his own, getting in a good few zingers, not losing it. She keeps going on and on and on and sounds more defensive, he’s more confident.

    2. Yves Smith

      Unless you also have right wing political commentators on your Twitter feed, you are suffering from sample bias. The MSM is all in for Clinton. Ditto any political sites in the center and left save the pretty far left ones like Counterpunch and Black Agenda Report, which are willing to entertain the idea that Clinton is the more effective evil.

      Now here is a different slice of sample bias: my only mother in law survey has been of the guys in my gym. Upscale Upper East Side (I get a big break by having been a charter member 21 years ago). They chat at night like hens, even about their love lives (which is kinda cute, particularly given that the youngest guy is in his late 30s). So I am highly confident that only one guy there is right wing (and he’s the only guy who knows what I do, he’s a Zero Hedge reader with a classic libertarian mindset). Most were Sanders voters.

      They are all gonna vote for Trump, including one of the trainers (who is clearly of a lower-class background from the way he speaks, and he is one of the Sanders supporters). And what surprises me more is that they are wiling to say this out loud in this neighborhood (heavy Clinton supporters) when there are women (besides me) within earshot.

      Just sayin’.

      Now Trump may indeed not be doing all that well, but my Twitter feed is dominated by journalists, and I don’t even need to look to tell you that they would declare Clinton the winner, as they did in debates with Sanders when polls later deemed Sanders to have come out on top.

      1. jonf

        You said upscale. That kinda gives it away. My experience in this neighborhood is those with higher incomes generally are in or near management and generally vote republican even though they may have little idea of the issues. Sanders may have tickled their fancy but Hillary, after all, is a felon. Right? It says so right here all over my FB.

        1. Yves Smith

          This is New York City, and the evening crowd in my gym is not Wall Street or corporate. They have to be in bed by 10 PM and my crowd gets there around 8-9 and leaves 10-10:30 PM. One guy runs a garment center business, is super lefty (very proud of having high paying manufacturing jobs and having first gen immigrants send their kids to college), another is a screenwriter who moved to NYC post a divorce, another runs a retail store, another is a high end commercial real estate broker…etc.

          These are all Democrats save the Zero Hedge libertarian. You really don’t know Manhattan. Manhattan is overwhelmingly Dem. Go look at the ZIP codes that give the most to Hillary. If you say you are a Trump supporter on the street in the Upper East Side, you are risking having someone stop and get in an argument with you, which BTW is NOT normal behavior here. That is why I found it shocking that they boyz were willing to say they were gonna vote for Trump. But it is not due to any love of Trump. They all think he’s dreadful but loathe Hillary and regard her as dangerous.

    3. MojaveWolf

      Was not on twitter during debate so I don’t know what it was like there but I thought he did both well and horrifically, depending on when/what. He was decent at the infighting part (very good at the non-policy infighting), not so good at the policy part (granted, he has to get the horrible-at-policy base to turn out, and what will work for them will not work for me).

      He actually did a good job pointing out real (and some possibly not-real, I dunno about some of it) corruption. If his allegations were false, Clinton certainly didn’t seem in a hurry to make impossible to walk back flat denials.

      Clinton was on her game to begin with and cleaning his clock, except when she went stupid/scary w/the anti-Russia stuff, but her evasions were glaringly obvious in places and he got better the first third of the debate.

      Debate also started w/Supreme Court, which was the one area the Dems have always been able to reliably scare people into voting for candidates they don’t want. And choice, where HIllary was great and Trump was awful. Rest of debate occasionally appeared to have been sponsored by the Peterson Foundation.

    1. TheCatSaid

      He has a new facial expression–lips in a straight line, quasi-smile it looks like he’s practiced it–like his stately version of her gleeful smirk.

  36. otis

    If I can’t say her red glassy eyes are red and glassy you can not have the donation I planned. I’m disappointed in the moderation of this thread. Will not forget.

    1. Yves Smith

      If you are that petty and demanding, spare us your donation. I don’t want money from ingrates with unreasonable expectations, unless you are prepared to write us a check for dedicated staffing for comments coverage 24/7. At $15 an hour, that’s over $131,000, way in excess of the total we’ve raised in any fundraiser. We’ve repeatedly told readers that if they want comments liberated from moderation faster, they heed to pay for it. No one has made a single payment for this purpose. That says they agree with our priorities: generating new content first and foremost, and managing comments when we can.

      If you’d bothered to look at our site policies, we commit to getting comments out of moderation only within 24 hours. MSM sites that moderate comments take hours to liberate them and they are vastly better resourced than we are. We have all of 1.3 people running this site, and we work insanely hard to produce the content we do like clockwork. That takes priority.

      Lambert is live blogging. Did it not occur to you that that means he can’t be dealing with comments in moderation? And I happen to be 1. sorta listening to the debate 2. catching up with comments on other posts and 3. liberating comments here in between.

      Your demand for immediate action is excessive by ANY standard, particularly given that we are a very undermanned operation.

      1. otis

        I’m not upset, I was disappointed and didn’t demand anything. I said I wouldn’t support being censored. If I was mistaken about my original comment vanishing due to a delay in moderation I apologize. From my seats it vanished. I support Jill Stein anyway.

        Have a lovely evening.

    2. HBE

      Lol, seems like a fairly low value comment to get upset about getting stuck in moderation. And to withhold a donation because of it, um ok.

  37. TheCatSaid

    Now Trump is attacking her about losing $6 Billion from the State Department. Criticizes her record, her “bad experience”.

    Oh no she’s going on about Children’s Defense Fund again. But she’s on the defensive. Trying to build up her experience–the trouble is she hasn’t really done much.

    1. NotTimothyGeithner

      Her basic narrative is she is the single most qualified person in the history of things to ever be deign to run for President and then she mumbles about one thing she did between being a lawyer for Wal-Mart and the governor’s wife.

      It’s a terrible narrative. Oh, and being on the wrong side of every foreign policy decision for 25 years.

      Then of course, there are the weekly introductions to the real Hillary her crooked friends really like.

    2. Lambert Strether Post author

      Here’s Snopes on that:

      When Hillary Clinton’s State Department received an inspector general’s alert in 2014 charging that the paperwork on $6 billion in government contracts hadn’t been properly accounted for, it didn’t mean, despite some loosey-goosey media reporting at the time, that the money itself was “lost” or “missing.” State Department inspector general Steve Linick clarified what happened thusly:

      The April 3 news article “State Department’s IG issues rare alert” reported on the management alert issued recently by my office. In the alert, we identified State Department contracts with a total value of more than $6 billion in which contract files were incomplete or could not be located. The Post stated, “The State Department’s inspector general has warned the department that $6 billion in contracting money over the past six years cannot be properly accounted for . . . . ”

      Some have concluded based on this that $6 billion is missing. The alert, however, did not draw that conclusion. Instead, it found that the failure to adequately maintain contract files — documents necessary to ensure the full accounting of U.S. tax dollars — “creates significant financial risk and demonstrates a lack of internal control over the Department’s contract actions.”

      Steve Linick, Washington

      So, if the point of comparing Trump’s and Clinton’s “losses” is to imply that Clinton literally misplaced $6 billion in taxpayer monies, it fails. If the point, however, is that Clinton ought to be held responsible for mismanagement of the department’s record keeping practices such that $6 billion in government spending was  inadequately accounted for, it’s well taken.

      Of course, the so-called fact checkers are all over this one. To me, it sounds like the record-keeping at State is as bad as it is at the Pentagon. And by the rules of a phishing equilibrium, assume fraud where there’s the opportunity for fraud. So, I’m comfortable with saying Clinton “lost” the money. The whole Snopes post seems to turn on the distinction between “losing” something and not knowing where it is…

      1. Optimader

        The theory goes it’s not “lost” til you stop looking for it. Lets just say “misplaced”! “Missing” would be a little harsh?

  38. Lambert Strether

    W econonomy

    CLINTON I want biggest jobs program since WWII. New jobs and clean energy [she goes all singsong when emitting talking points.] Raise minimum wage, equal pay. You will not get a tuition bill from public college or u if plan Sanders and I worked out. Most gains gone to the top, and the rich will pay for their share. Plan analyzed by experts, would gain 10 million jobs. Trump tax cuts trickle down economics on steroids, cost us jobs, lead to recession

    TRUMP Her plan will raise and even double your taxes. The rest of the public will pay for her tuition.

    Start off where we left. Japan, South Korea, Saudi Arabia. They’re very rich, why aren’t they paying? Since I questioned, they’ve all started to pay up. She says “We love our allies,” but that makes it hard for them to pay up. DUring his regime, deficit doubled.

    Look at all the places I just left, our jobs have fled. I’m going to renegotiate NAFTA, and if we can’t, walk away. Bring offshore taxes back into the country

    CLINTON Let me translate that if I can.

    TRUMP You can’t

    CLINTON He wants tax cuts. I have said no tax increase $250K. He mentioned the debt. We went from deficit to surplus. Obama has cut the deficit by two-third. One of the ways you create jobs is by investing in people. We’ve tried cutting taxes on the weathy

    W Your plan similar to Obama stim plan, slowest growth

    TRUMP Corrent

    W Is your plan a continuation of Obama stimulus plan?

    CLINTON Never seen people as physically distraught as Bushies. Obama doesn’t get credit he deserves for hard decisions. I’m proposed we invest from the middle out and the ground up. My proposal won’t add a penny to the debt. We’re beginning to see increasing wages.

    W Trump, even conservative economists say your numbers don’t add up?

    TRUMP India is growing at 8%, China at 7%. We are growing at 1% and I think it’s going down. Is that the last jobs report before the election? I should win easily! We’ve lost our jobs, products pouring in from all over the world. I pass factories that were thriving 20 years ago. It’s horrible what happened. She can say her husband did well. Now she wants to sign TPP. She lied when she said it wasn’t gold standard

    CLINTON When I saw the TPP, I was against. There’s only one of us that’s shipped jobs to China and that’s Donald. I fought Chinese dumping steel, but Donald bought Chinese steel. Crocodile tears!

    TRUMP She’s been doing this for 30 years, why the hell didn’t she do it for the last 15 years? You have experience over me, but it’s bad experience. The problem is you talk and don’t do anything. At State, $6 billion dollars is missing. Where did it go?

    CLINTON State Dept untrue and debunk. [Deploys Children’s Defense Fund]. On the day I was in the briefing room [watching OBL get whacked], he was on the Apprentice

    TRUMP I think I did a better job. I built a phenomenal company with that million dollar loan. Take a look at Syria, Look at ISIS. She and Obama created a vacuum. She gave us ISIS as sure as you’re sitting there.

    1. Anonymous

      So does this mean the private colleges–except for Ivies and those in like financial condition–are all going to be forced out of business?

    1. ChiGal in Carolina

      He claimed the police advised him not to, the police made a statement they had not done so; there was very little “violence”, no one seriously hurt.

      But remember this was the primary: Bernie got the blame.

      Speaking of which, donate to support the 9 progressive candidates who may be able to take the Senate for the Dems, in which case Bernie is chair if the budget committee

    1. JSM

      NBC set up the Billy Bush tape, if that’s what’s being referred to. The Clintons set up the big frontpage NYT ‘accusers,’ or whatever it was.

      The latter story was written by Haberman & Jonathan Martin, two of the Clinton campaign’s favorite hacks named in the Wikileaks emails. Interesting, no?

      (PS. With all due respect to site policy it is not a certainty that the NYT allegations are false, but they are certainly suspicious for the reason given.)

  39. Lee

    These agents provacateurs accusations against Clinton are quite plausible (hey, they were on PBS Newshour) even if the source is shady. They just feel very Clintonesque.

    1. ggm

      There is a lot of evidence dug up by reddit amateur investigators after the tape leaked. They found people on the tape in a few protest videos as well as a woman on the Clinton payroll. I don’t trust the voter fraud tape at all, but the inciting violence at riots tapes looks like the real deal.

        1. Lambert Strether Post author

          > firebombings of Republican campaign offices in swing states


          Thinking back to the Democrat primaries, despite all the Clintonian yammering about violence, and Jon Ralson’s fake chair-throwing smear, the violent incident I recall was from Clinton supporter Wendell Pierce, who was charged with assault. Have I mentally erased other cases?

  40. John

    Does anyone here believe in miracles?
    That somehow, someway, one of these two
    won’t be the next president of the USA?

    Because I can’t believe that one of them is
    really going to be president.

    1. NotTimothyGeithner

      OMG. I had a thought that warrants “OMG.”

      If Trump is close and Ryan is seen as unfit to continue as Speaker…well…the Speaker doesn’t have to be a member of Congress.

      It would be the ultimate troll job to seat Trump where he could hover over Hillary.

      1. dk

        Interesting! But if even if possible, that level of creativity seems to be beyond the volition of the beltway. It would change the balance of power in unforeseen ways, that is not what (most) big-dollar contributors are shelling out for, they want things locked down, if not to their advantage then at least stable and clearly defined (because it’s hard to do an end run around a moving target).

        I think the same kind of reasoning was behind Clinton’s approval vote for Presidential authority in 2002 (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Iraq_Resolution); I would want that power if I was president, so I don’t want to pass precedents against it. I won’t second-guess, because I don’t want to be second-guessed later. The desire for predictable mechanisms in government inhibits evaluation of merits of specific cases.

  41. alex morfesis

    well done $hillary…the question was for her to respond about bill and his stuff…good diversion…congrats…

    donald donald donald…

    when she said you had a problem with what you did with these women and could not apologize…

    you could have asked her…

    are you talking about me or your husband bill…

  42. TheCatSaid

    Clinton is calling out Trump’s criticism of women, their appearance, etc. She’s on stronger ground here. Now she’s losing it again, word soup about what our country is. Why can’t she stay on a topic? She keeps weakening her points by going on and saying nothing. Making America great again. Using his memes.

    Trump saying no one respects women more than here.

    Now he’s bringing up her emails. What happened to the FBI, he asks? Talks about 1 guy getting 4 yrs in jail for 1 lie to the FBI, a 4-star general, but she makes hundreds of lies.

  43. TheCatSaid

    Clinton says Trump denies to take responsibility for what he says about women, other things that make him uncomfortable. Disabled reporter, Kahn’s son.

  44. Susan C

    Hillary did not respond to Trump’s charge that she paid for people to riot in Chicago before his rally. Instead she began to speak very slowly to eat up her time.

      1. Lambert Strether Post author

        If it can get out of the right wing fever swamp with better sourcing than known video faker O’Keefe. Right now, it’s just Inside Baseball, right wing-style.

  45. TheCatSaid

    Oooh, Clinton uses rhetoric–says Trump is “dark, divisive, dangerous”. She practiced that one. There was no context.

    1. Lambert Strether Post author

      Too lazy to find the link, but IIRC “dark” (“dark vision”) was a talking point the Clinton campaign worked hard to come up with and focus grouped. They all started using it at the same time…

  46. ChiGal in Carolina

    Apparently only if I comment will this update, sheesh

    So okay they are mirror images, President Clump indeed

    1. Lambert Strether Post author

      I thought his statement that she should give the Saudi money back because they kill gay people was a good zinger.

      Won’t convince anybody, because apparently racism stops at the water’s edge, but a good zinger nonetheless.a

  47. John

    Do the elites really think the American people
    are going to swallow either one of these criminals as president?

    1. fosforos

      “Do the elites really think the American people
      are going to swallow either one of these criminals as president?”
      They do indeed, and with reason. More than two centuries of historical precedent.

  48. TheCatSaid

    Wallace asks her questions about Foundation, donation. Wallace is nervous. (When questioning Trump, he uses a different tone–he’s not as scared, he’s more deprecating.)

    Wallace is pressing her more on pay to play. Trump says it’s a criminal enterprise, Saudi & Qatar giving lots of money. They kill women & treat them horribly, push gays off buildings, but Clinton takes their money. He says she should give their money back. He says in Haiti they hate Clinton, what the foundation did was a disgrace.

    Clinton claims they spend 90% of donations on their programs. (Pinocchio moment, anyone?)

    1. Samuel Conner

      Spending money on programs is lawyerly language. From what I have read, CF runs events but does little that benefits people “on the ground”

  49. Kim Kaufman

    Too bad Trump doesn’t have any facts on Haiti. He could have buried her. This is so boring. Just low grade snipes at each other.

  50. John

    What about regular Americans paying more income taxes then Trump?
    Why is she talking about illegals paying more but not us?

    1. Lambert Strether Post author

      1) Clinton: Trump is history’s worst tax monster!

      2) Trump: I am what you made me!

      * * *

      It’s like… A habit of thought for Democrats is when they want to attack somebody, they always decontextualize them. That’s their tactic on racism, which in their view is a uniquely irredeemable personal characteristic having nothing to do with context or systems, and especially not with economic context of systems.

      Trump is saying he played by rules that the political establishment, very much including Clinton, made. And he’s not wrong.

      1. Steve H.

        Great insight in that, painting him as a uniquely irredeemable personal character seemed to be her main strategy last night.

  51. TheCatSaid

    Trump talks about his foundation, 100% used. Wallace asks if the money was used to pay his debts. Trump says it went to building houses for veterans and disabled.

    Clinton says we won’t know cuz he won’t release his tax returns, so we can’t prove anything. She claims her tax returns reveal something. (Ha ha ha ha–Clinton Foundation docs don’t reveal much.)

  52. TheCatSaid

    Trump says Clinton should have changed the law, she gets lots of money. He mentions his beautiful hotel and she says again “built with Chinese steel”, audience laughs.

    Wallace asks Trump about rigged election, will he commit to accept the result of the election, he says he’ll look at it at the time.

    Media dishonest & corrupt, NYT wrote about it, poisoned the minds of voters but he thinks people can see through it.

    Voter roles – people on the register who shouldn’t be.

  53. Kim Kaufman

    re “rigged election” – Trump is talking about the Republican “cross-check” method (see Greg Palast) they have of taking millions of black, brown and Asian off the voter rolls – without them knowing.

    1. Lambert Strether Post author

      That’s exactly what he’s talking about.

      It’s also the method used by Jebbie in 2000 with the Florida felon’s list — a fine example of why it’s madness to insist (a) that elections are never rigged (even leaving out the role of the press) and (b) therefore madness that Trump commit to agreeing an election is fair before the election is held. (Trump might have said something like “Just ask Bernie Sanders supporters in Nevada whether elections can be rigged!” but Trump is either indisciplined or his crew is too small to develop enough good lines.)

      Frankly, that the entire political class is insisting that Trump say the election is not rigged is an excellent reason to believe it’s rigged six ways from Sunday.

      1. Ché Pasa

        It would be nice if that’s what he’s talking about, but he has never mentioned them or any of the other myriad ways our elections and the electorate are inherently manipulated and rigged.

        He only talks about media bias (but not the initial media fascination with his candidacy or the boost that they gave him) and all but non-existent in person voter fraud. Two shibboleths that have been standard rightist accusations forever.

        Our elections are in essence phony and have been for a long, long time, but not so much for the reasons Trump cites.

  54. TheCatSaid

    Trump says she should never have been allowed to run because she’s guilty of serious things, the emails and more.

    Wallace returns to ask if he’ll go along with the election result, Trump says he’ll let him know.

    Clinton says Trump always claims things are rigged if they don’t go his way.

    1. Lambert Strether Post author

      Clinton was effective in claiming Trump always claims things are rigged.

      Thing is, given the experience of the last eight years, it’s hard to argue that things aren’t rigged; unless you’re doing the rigging or benefiting from it, which so much of Clinton’s base is doing.

  55. alex morfesis

    the fbi did a one year investigation or a three day cover up…?

    but the question or statement was the transition of power…

    donald…just respond since he is not in power there is no issue here

  56. TheCatSaid

    Clinton claims we’ve had “free and fair elections”.

    Now there’s a huge lie. Bigger lie than about her emails.

    1. Lambert Strether Post author

      It’s even worse, since Clinton was made aware of the Obama campaign’s caucus fraud in Texas 2008. (My pet theory is that she used that as leverage over Obama for the deal they cut in Denver.)

  57. Lambert Strether

    W Grabbing women. Nine came forward, said you groped them. Why would so many women all make up these stories, and Clinton, what your husband, was that worse?

    TRUMP Debunked. I think she made them come forward. My rally in Chicago violent because them. I didn’t even apologize to my wife, sitting right here, bc I didn’t do it. I don’t know why. I believe she got these people to step forward, or 10 minutes of fame. Lies or fiction

    CLINTON At the last debate, we heard what Donald did. Others come forward. He went on to say “Look at her.” Donald thins belittling women makes him bigger. So we now know how Donald thinks of women. That’s who Donald is. It’s up to all of us to say who we are. We want to celebrate our diveristy. America is great because America is good….

    TRUMP Nobody has more respect for women than I do. I want to talk about something slightly different. What isn’t fictionalized are her emails, where she destroyed 33K emails after getting a subpoena. We have a general going to jail for 1 lie. She’s A four star general. And she gets away with it, and she can run for President.

    CLINTON Every time Donald is pushed, he goes for denying responsibility. [Kahn, McCain…] It’s not onte thing, it’s a pattern of divisiness, a dark vision where he incites violence at his rallies.

    TRUMP So sad when she talks about violence at my rallies when she incites it!

    W Clinton, in 2009 you promised to avoid appearance of Clinton with CF. Can you really say you kept your pledge? WHy is this not “pay to play”

    CLINTON Everything I did in furtherance of our country. CF is a world-renowned charity. 11M get HIV treatment. We have made environment

    W The question went to pay to play

    TRUMP It’s a criminal enterprise. Saudis gave millinos. These are people who kill gays. Why don’t you give back the money? In Little Haiti and they hate the Clintons because of what the CF did in Clinton

    CLINTON Happy to compare to Donald’s foundation, portrait. Haiti is the poorest country. CF raised 30 million. We’re going to keep working to help.

    TRUMP They don’t want your help.

    CLINTON Hasn’t released his tax returns, so we don’t know anything about his charities. Half of all immigrants actually pay income taxes

    TRUMP We’re entitled to depreciate because of laws you passed. Most of her donors have done what I did. You should have changed the law when you were a Senator. But you want change the law because you’ve taken so much ad. I sat there and watched ad after ad after ad paid for by your friends on Wall Street

    W Trump, warned election rigged. Pence pledges will accept, Ivanka said will accept.

    TRUMP I will look at it at the time. What I’ve seen is so bad. The media is so corrupt and the pile-on is so amazing. If you look at your voter rolls you will see millions that are registered to vote that shouldn’t be. She’s guilty of a serious crime and should not be allowed be to run. In that respect it’s rigged!

    W A tradition is the peaceful transition of power. The country comes together.

    TRUMP What I’m saying is that I’ll tell you at the time.

    CLINTON Donald always says everything was rigged. Trump U, claims judge is rigged. There was even a time he didn’t an Emmy three times. This is mindset, it’s how he things. Funny but troubling. We’ve been around 240 years, we’ve had free and fair elections [!!!!!]. Obama said, when you’re whining, you’re not up to doing the job! He is denigrating, talking down to our democracy. I am appalled.

    TRUMP What the FBI did and the Justice did, including meeting with the AG on the tarmac in Arizona, is a disgrace.

  58. John

    Did anyone hear a word about how these two would create the 50 million jobs
    we need at half decent wages?

  59. TheCatSaid

    Trump brings up Big Bill’s mtg with AG in plane on tarmac–audience claps him enthusiastically.

  60. Qrys

    IF only Clinton would use her moments of impassioned rhetoric to talk about doing things for the American people rather than pushing to shame Trump or defending the FBI…

    Now back to droning Clinton on protecting soldiers and conflict in Syria (yawn)

  61. TheCatSaid

    Clinton says we have a lot of work to do. Syria etc. We have to keep our eye on ISIS, we need an “intelligence surge”. Continue to push for no fly zone and gain leverage on Syrian gov’t and the Russians to bring the conflict to an end.

  62. TheCatSaid

    Trump – we had Mosul, she left, her fault.

    No secrecy, people talking about Mosul for 3 months.

    Clinton wants to look good for the election.

    The leaders we wanted to get (in Mosul) are all gone.

    Iran is taking over Iraq, we’ve made it easy for them.

    We’ll take Mosul and Iran will benefit.

  63. John

    I do have to say without Trump in this election
    the lid would not have been blown off the criminality
    of the government in Washington.

    Mouthing off about it all the time every chance he gets.

    Not that Trump will do anything to change it.
    But still.

  64. TheCatSaid

    Clinton about Trump supported the Iraq invasion, he says “wrong”.
    She says look on the internet.

    She says she was going after ISIS when he was doing The Apprentice.

    She wants to take Mosul then retake Raqqa.

    She says Trump is always looking for conspiracies and conspiracy theories., says he’s unfit.

    Trump says she’s unfit, says Podesta says horrible things about her and he was right. Says Sanders was right about her, bad judgment.

  65. johnnygl

    Clinton: ‘safe zones in syria to get leverage on russia and assad’ — wtf?!?!!!??

    Trump with this ‘element of surprise’ thing is so dumb! Does he think this is a winner?!!?? Also, the guy is so scatter-brained!???

    Trump’s as bad as the first debate. Maybe worse.

    1. jgordon

      Oh I don’t know. I thought that when Trump pointed out the objective fact that Hillary is a criminal who should be in prison right now rather than running for president that was pretty much all that needed to be said for him to win.

    2. JSM

      To Americans of either side who are sick of our failed foreign policy and wondering whether it’s intentionally duplicitous, yah, I think it’s a winner. Keep reading, you’ll see.

  66. Bjornasson

    Hillary sticking to technicals and official truths – “FBI cleared me after a year-long investment”; “Google Trump Iraq – all these sources” etc. If she can validate it, it must be true!
    Trump, on the other hand, is winging it with “homebaked” truths – some bald lies, some half-truths, some actual truths. However, if it resonates with the gut feeling of enough people, it is much better basis for argument than pure technicality.

    She just giggled after calling him the most dangerous man to have ever run for the Presidency. Wtf.

    1. ggm

      He should have mentioned wikileaks. They found her own oppo research said his Iraq war opposition would be a huge problem for her.

      I noticed she stopped plugging her website. Afraid he will reply with a plug for wikileaks?

  67. TheCatSaid

    Wallace says Aleppo has fallen, Trump says it’s still there, still happening. Wallace sounds shaky.

    Trump again “it’s so sad”. Says Assad is tougher than Clinton & Obama. Says it’s our fault Iran is powerful, we gave them bundles of cash, $1.7 Billion.

    We’re backing the rebels, but we don’t know who the rebels are. If they ever did overthrow Assad, they might end up with something worse than Assad. Causes Great Migration, in many cases they are ISIS-aligned, great Trojan horse, “Thanks a lot Hillary for doing a great job.”

    1. Lambert Strether Post author

      Yes. As I recall, Trump said something like “just look at it” (Aleppo). Trump would do better to frame what he says as common sense, colorfully expressed, rather than play the Beltway game of scholastic word chopping.

      I know “The Blob” thinks not knowing the detail on Aleppo and whoever the **** we’re going to whack next after we whack whoever the **** we’re trying to whack now is deeply serious, but their whole enterprise should be burned to the ground and salt scattered over the rubble. Sixteen years of policy disaster and blowback, not coincidentally enabling looting by elites.

  68. tawal

    Trump is kicking butt. Stein or Trump…
    Can’t stomach Bill in the WH again.
    Even though I’m in CA, and should vote Stein; what if, Trump gets the majority???

  69. TheCatSaid

    Wallace asks Clinton about no fly zone, risk of starting a war. She says those are genuine risks, but thinks she could “strike a deal”.

    Re: refugees, they will be vetted, but not close our doors, that boy with blood coming down his face is haunting. Orlando Pulse Nightclub killer born in Queens just like Donald. (Wow that’s a low blow.)

  70. WJ

    Clinton: This great country of America is good because greatness of our good people. I don’t believe that Donald has greatness good enough for America because of his ungood comments about women reporters I’ve disabled in defense of Children’s Defense Fund. That’s not the kind of double plus goodness of America I want to fight for.

    Trump: I have the highest regard for all overweight and disabled women. Always have. I will let them speak for my successes. But Hillary is trying to distract from emails. Lots of generals are in prison for breaking security but the FBI has to look the other way, because 6 billion is lost in Syria and there is no action. I will renegotiate the Missouri Compromise, and the Louisiana Purchase if I have to. They were bad deals for America’s workers, and I have a lot of money.

  71. Lambert Strether

    W If we push ISIS out, you put troops into that vacuum?

    CLINTON I am encouraged there is an effort by Iraq in Syria. Will not support American troops “as an occupying force” [ZOMG, the lawerly parsing!] Hopeful that the hard work military advisors. Intelligence surge… I’m going to continue to push for a no-fly zone. Need serious negotation to bring conflict to an end.

    TRUMP I’ve been reading about Mosul for three months. What about the element of surprise? They’ve all left. Why are we doing it? So she can look tough for the election. So Mosul is going to be a wonderful thing, and Iran should write us a letter of thanks.

    CLINTON Once again, Donald is implying he dind’t support Iraq. I just want everybody to Google “Donald Trump Iraq” and you can hear the audio [thank you Eric Schmidt]. What’s really important is to understand all the interplay. We need to go after the leadership, “get rid of them” in Mosul, then move on to Rakka. I’m amazed to see Donald thinks all these governments [colluded to elect me].

    TRUMP Wikileaks. Podesta said some horrible things about you and boy was he right. “Terrible instincts.” Sanders “bad judgment” I agree with both.

    CLINTON Sanders says you’re the most dangerous person to run and I think he’s right

    W Aleppo? Said some wrong things about Alepp

    TRUMP It’s a disaster

    W ALso said Syria and Russia fighting ISIS but they’ve been been bombing.

    TRUMP By fighting Assad, he was tougher and smarter than her and Obama. Now he’s aligned with Russia, and Iran, who we made stronger. They don’t want ISIS. We’re backing rebels. We don’t know who the rebels are. If the rebels overthrow Assad, could be worse. If she did nothing, we would be better off. And she caused the Great Migration. What ’til you see what happens. Lots of luck Hillary. Great job

    W No-fly, Obama has refused to do. What if a Russian plane violates, shoot it down?

    CLINTON I am aware of the legitimate concerns you have expressed. I think we could strike a deal and make it clear that this was something in the best interests of people on the ground.

    I am not going to get anybody into the country not vetted. Picture of the 4-year-old haunting. We have

    [Doesn’t answer about shooting the plane down]

    TRUMP Had a ceasefire, Russia took over land, ceasefire ends. We are so outplayed by Putin and Assad and Iran. Nobody can believe how stupid our leadership is.

  72. TheCatSaid

    Trump says ISIS never should have happened.

    No one can believe how stupid our leadership is.

    (He’s probably right about that. Can’t imagine what foreigners make of this crazy election.)

    1. Bjornasson

      I can contribute my two cents!

      Four years ago I would have been surprised to see that the rhetoric and tactics are quite similar to those frequently employed in Indian politics; I somehow thought that the developed, Enlightened West would be above that. The thing that surprises me is not the abysmal quality of the candidates, but the attitude of Americans towards this election. They are much better informed than their developing world counterparts and much better (or longer) educated – on average. And yet, they are either enthusiastic for their candidate or unable to grasp just how truly broken their political system is. They joke about it, post memes and get self-righteous on social media and in-person, but they seem to have little to no concern about what it means in the big picture. They have no willingness to be open-mindedness (although all of them worship the innovation and out-of-the-box thinking of Silicon Valley and Steve Jobs) and consider points of view that may not align with their preferences. As you may have guessed, I live on a University campus – which is not representative of the USA, but is definitely the pool of people from which the “future leaders of the free world” are expected to be drawn. I am not enthusiastic about that prospect.
      This then, to me, is perhaps the most disappointing aspect of life in America and the most clarifying aspect of this election.

      1. Lee

        “I somehow thought that the developed, Enlightened West would be above that.”

        Journalist: What do you think of Western civilization?

        Gandhi: I think it would be a good idea.

        1. Bjornasson

          Although far from being a starry-eyed supporter of Gandhi, I find it sad how his ideas have diminished in modern India to the point where they are painted as pie-in-the-sky idealism. He was prescient in his foresight that the emulation of Western liberalism would fare poorly on Indian soil and could not last forever on a global scale. In this he was not alone, but supported by the first Asian to win a Nobel Prize in Literature – Rabindranath Tagore. These are hailed as great men even today, but ask anyone to follow what they preached and you find them balk at the very idea.

  73. John

    So cutting taxes on the rich is going to create tremendous jobs.
    Heard that so many times I can’t count.

  74. Micky9finger

    Hard to take.
    One suggestion, put a switch on the microphones and switch them off when they won’t stop talking.

  75. TheCatSaid

    Trump “I’m going to create the kind of country we used to be”.

    [Well God save us from someone who wants to take us backwards.]

    We have to use our great people. We will create an economic machine, the likes of which we haven’t seen in many decades, companies that will grow and expand and start from new.

  76. Qrys

    National Debt now = 77% of GDP

    Clinton = Ndebt to 86% of GDP
    Trump = Ndebt to 105% of GDP

    Trump: “We will have created a tremendous … machine once again”
    Clinton: “I will not add one penny to the National debt”

    So is Trump more MMT than Clinton?!

    1. Samuel Conner

      Trump occasionally emits MMT-like sounds, but I’m not sure that he believes them. For example, he has previously accurately noted that US can’t be forced to default on USD-denominated debt, since it prints its own currency. Then he suggested that we could reduce the outstanding debt by negotiating down the price of previously issued Treasury bonds (not sure the details; perhaps threaten to default, hammer the price by terrifying bond-holders, and buy the depressed price bonds.) At other times Trump has criticized the level of debt, for example the fact that the nominal public debt doubled under Obama (after doubling under Bush II, it must be admitted). It appears to me that Trump favors lower nominal debt as a good thing in itself, without consideration of the effect of lowering the debt on other sectors.

      I’m not confident that Trump actually believes any MMT principles.

      OTOH, I’m pretty confident that HRC rejects MMT completely. She boasts of WJC’s surpluses, for example. She evidently doesn’t know elementary accounting facts such as the sectoral balances identity.

      1. RudyM

        Why would he flirt with MMT ideas on debt at all if he didn’t believe them? It’s not going to attract his base, and even Sanders didn’t speak in those terms. I suspect Trump’s understanding of federal debt is very similar to MMT’s. He’s running as a Republican. Talking about reducing debt tends to be automatic. That’s almost as true for the Democrats as well.

        That doesn’t mean I think he would necessarily act according if he were to become president.

  77. alex morfesis

    back in 1987…he basically said then what he says now…because her beltway buddies have been doing fine since 1987….the folks in youngstown ohio and johnstown pennsylvania….not so much…

  78. TheCatSaid

    Clinton criticizes a $100,000 ad Trump took out in 1987 criticizing things.

    Clinton says she doesn’t add a penny to the national debt. How we’ll pay for education, infrastructure, get prescription drug costs down–ask wealthy & corporations to pay their fair share, it won’t diminish growth.

    We have to get back to building the middle class, I want to invest in you. (wonder who she means by that)

    Trump–“we’ve heard this before” He says he disagreed with Reagan on trade.

  79. Starveling

    Puppies are great because puppies are good…. ugh. Hillary has become a traditional Republican with regard to American exceptionalism.

      1. Starveling

        Reagan had ten thousand golden retriever puppies, all of them named America.

        He also had an eagle named Small Government which would land on his shoulder and could quote the Second Amendment in the exact voice- tone and timbre- of George Washington himself.

        1. Lambert Strether

          > Reagan had ten thousand golden retriever puppies, all of them named America.

          Well, that wins the Internet!

          I couldn’t believe it when she was appalled Trump criticized Reagan. All Obama did was say Reagan had some “good ideas.”

          1. OIFVet

            Liberal talking heads are hyperventilating about the Donald dissing Reagan. Tells me all I need to know.

  80. TheCatSaid

    Wallace on entitlements, 60% of the budget, neither one has a plan to deal with this.

    Trump – says cut taxes, grow the economy. Repeal & replace Obamacare, it’s destroying out businesses. It’ll probably die of his own weight, premiums going up 70 80 100%. He says Clinton wants to make it worse.

  81. dbk

    I don’t understand how people accepted referring to SS and Medicare as “entitlements”.

    T: Obamacare has to go – increase in premiums – bad health care at most exp. price.

    W: Same question: will you +taxes /-benefits to save SS?

    C: I want to increase benefits for those who have been disadvantaged.
    ACA extended solvency of Medicare Trust Fund. Have to get costs down, increase value (???), emphasize wellness.

    Depressing topic.

  82. TheCatSaid

    Wallace’s question is really limiting the framing of the question about benefits, taxes, entitlements. No room in his world for MMT or any kind of non-austerity approach.

  83. Lambert Strether

    W Clinton debt/GRP ratio to 86% and debt to 105%. Why aren’t you dealing with the problem?

    TRUMP They’re wrong, because I’m going to create jobs. We could get to 1% growth to 5%. Have business people not political hacks making trade deals. We will create an economic machine like we haven’t seen for decades. People will get back to work

    CLINTON When did he think the country was great? Trump has been criticizing our government for decades. He was criticizing President Reagan. To the debt, I won’t add a penny to the debt. We are going where the money is. Ask the rich and corps to pay their fair share. What economists call “middle-out growth” [they do?]

    TRUMP I disagreed with Reagan on trade. Now we’re going to do it right.

    W Biggest driver is entitlements, neither has a serious plan on Medicare and Social Security running out of money?
    Would President Trump do a Grand Bargain?

    TRUMP Cutting taxes and grow economy. Repeal and replace ObamaCare. It’s probably going to die of its own weight. Premiums. “Bad health care at the most expensive price.”

    CLINTON I am on record as saying we need to put more money in SS Trust Fund, taxing rich, assuming Donald doesnt’ get out of them.

    TRUMP Such a nasty woman

    CLINTON I will not cut benefits. I want to enhance benefits for poor and women who have been disadvantages.

    CLINTON Trump tax cuts disaster effect on debt.

  84. TheCatSaid

    Wallace gives them each 1 minute closing statement why they should be elected.

    Clinton- everyone watching, I’m reaching out to everyone to help make our country what it should be, make it fairer for everyone, we need your talents, energy, ambition. (Yeah she’ll suck out our energy for sure.) I’ll stand up for your interests against powerful corporations. (Really???)

    Trump–she’s raising money from the people she wants to control. I’ll take care of veterans better than our immigrants. Law & order. Take care of everyone. I’ll take better care of African Americans & Latinos, better than she could do in a hundred years. We can’t take 4 more years of Barack Obama and that is what we would get with her.

    1. polecat

      Mrs. Clinton …in Closing : Ok All you Mommies out there … VOTE MEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE !

      Mr. Trump …in Closing : What you get if you vote for HER …. is a DEPLORABLE LIAR …..

  85. ginnie nyc

    She’s gonna create two classes of SS/Medicare recipients. Great. Some will get a fraction more, most will be screwed.

    1. John

      You’ll wish you were dirt poor. You’ll be better off.

      Come to think of it, that’s already how it works.
      If you have nothing you are taken care of.
      If you have a tiny bit you are on your own.

  86. Lambert Strether

    W Asks for closing statements, one minute

    CLINTON Reaching out to all Americans because we need everybody to make country what it should be. I’ve been privileges to see presidency up close. I will stand up for families against powerful interests, good jobs, rising incomes. Hope give me a chance to server.’

    TRUMP She’s raising money from people she wants to control. It doesn’t work that way. Military, police, law and order and justice. Inner cities a disaster. I will do more for AAs than she can do in ten lifetimes. We are going to make America great again. We cannot take four more years of Obama and that’s what you get with her.

      1. Rosario

        Yeah, that is what is so frustrating about this election. Clinton and Trump are just two philosophical negatives fighting to occupy a negative political space. In my slack understanding of Hegel this seems to be a ripe opportunity for transcendent politics driven by the populace. Problem is…the citizenry seems largely unaware of the opportunity. Maybe our privileged consumer culture, I dunno, it is such a waste.

        Thanks for the coverage NC. I didn’t watch a moment of the circus, but I prefer this format of presentation anyway. I can keep working and catch the insanity in chunks.

  87. alex morfesis

    she smiles hard with big teeth when he zings her…

    and its done…

    and now…back to the coal mines…

    oh wait…we dont have those anymore…

  88. Kim Kaufman

    I guess you could say Donald at least can learn. He’s gotten better in each debate in terms of not appearing to be a drug addict with anger issues.

      1. polecat

        It’s too bad that Hillary had a bigger boat !

        …she was floating in a leaky dinghy at this debate, however …

  89. Skippy

    In the immortal words once electronically presented here on NC….

    “Because neo-liberalism. Because I like the idea, a lot, of catching the Mount Pelerin Society, Pinochet, Diane Rehm, the Friedmans, Joe Biden, Rush Limbaugh, and the people who drafted the Democratic platform in one big net, and then deep-sixing the entire squirming and gesticulating political class with language that’s “exceptionally bloggy and aggressively casual and implicitly ironic.”

    Whats that thingy again about being oblivious about irony…. oh yeah….

    Excessive examples

    Irony is the fact that Paul Wolfowitz gave his girlfriend a pay raise during an anti-corruption drive by the World Bank.

    Irony is that the drummer of ZZ Top, Frank Beard, is the only beardless member of the band.

    Irony is that former Penn State coach and convicted sex offender Jerry Sandusky wrote an autobiography in 2001 called Touched[wp] …and no one thought anything of it.[3]

    Irony is that General David Petraeus’ mistress biographer Paula Broadwell wrote a book in January 2012 called All In[wp] …and no one thought anything of it.[4]

    Irony is the fact that Sax Rohmer, who did much to popularize the Yellow Peril with the Fu Manchu series, died from the Asian flu.

    Irony is that a military that costs six times more than its Chinese counterpart couldn’t kill one frail, kidney-failing terrorist in a timeframe longer than WWI and WWII combined.[5]

    Irony is the fact that evil gummint-control of everything socialist countries have the highest standards of living and political freedoms available on the planet.[6] They also place highly on The Ease of Doing Business Index,[7] with socialist New Zealand, Denmark and Norway even topping the US.

    Irony is the fact that the Bush administration patriotically took away our rights in the name of defending our rights. – snip


    Disheveled Marsupial….. I think I’m developing an induced brain cloud…..

  90. Octopii

    Media all freaking out about the “respect the results of the election” question. Strange that nobody has brought up Al Gore — it certainly would have been better for the country if Al had pushed harder in 2000.

    1. TheCatSaid

      Yes the defending of our crap election systems and crap democracy is beyond belief. People have no idea how bad it is.

      1. TheCatSaid

        And Podesta is claiming it was a “low moment” for Trump that he said he’d wait and see.

        Why should anyone accept results in advance with so much election rigging past & present?

        Podesta again talks about “a dark place”–same wording Clinton used. That must be the new meme.

      2. uncle tungsten

        After this campaign the whole world can see how bad it is. Special thanks to Bernie Sanders and Donald Trump for providing the contrast medium.

    2. frosty zoom

      you know, mr. gore would have iraqued, too.

      maybe a kinder, gentler invasion, but in the end, la même chose.

      1. Octopii

        Maybe. Probably. Deep in my heart, when I dare to think about alternate histories, I sometimes imagine that Gore won, and that instead of dropping bombs after 9/11 he had led the charge to de-fund those crazies by getting off their oil asap. But the reality is that he was part of the same machine HRC represents today. He did get screwed in that election though — and it turns out the Dems were taking notes.

        1. different clue

          Had Gore won, Gore would have tasked the intelligence and defense communities with a sincere effort to study and pre-empt terrorist plots. A Gore Administration would not have HIHOPed 9/11, the way the Cheney/bush Administration did.

          ” Okay, you’ve covered your ass now.”

    3. Dwight

      Yes, and Trump’s claim of rigging was a claim that millions of people are improperly registered, which was the claim used in 2000 by Florida Secretary of State to wrongfully disenfranchise thousands of predominately African-American voters. Greg Palast documented it then, and has documented that it is happening again. Why did Clinton let Trump’s claim pass without comment on how that claim is now being used to remove voters from rolls?

      1. pretzelattack

        cause she doesn’t want to attract attention to the subject of election rigging?
        i hadn’t been aware it was happening again, are the same players involved?

        1. TheCatSaid

          The interference with the voter rolls keeps getting worse and worse. It can be done with pin-point accuracy. Lots of this was evident in the Dem primary elections. Greg Palast has a new documentary out about this, plus a book. Bob Fitrakis has a new book out about this. (Strip & Flip; removing voters from target areas is one part of a strategy that involves additional changes to electronic vote counts.) Bev Harris “Fraction Magic” is another key piece of the puzzle.

  91. OIFVet

    Wow ABC, the elections ain’t rigged but Russia hacked them?! Make up your damned minds already, this is more schizophrenia in a single sentence than I can handle…

  92. Skippy

    #Breaking: Trump’s lead advisor Roger Ailes has left the Trump campaign.
    According to reports:

    “[Fox] said the pair had a falling out, with both sides saying debate prep had not gone the way they wanted.
    The report came just hours before Wednesday’s third presidential debate in Las Vegas, where Trump will try to dig out of a recent polling hole.

    The report said that Ailes had concerns that Trump could not focus and that preparation would be a “waste of time,” while Trump thought Ailes spent too much prep time telling old stories.”

    1. Go Green or go HOME

      The statements re: wikileaks no doubt were discussed, and Ailes couldn’t support that.

      Has Trump been to enough shitty mid-western and southern towns with empty factories and had an epiphany? Perhaps he’s not just going to throw the election to H->

      Still doesn’t change my mind, Stein/Baraka 2016

  93. Lambert Strether

    My hot take:

    Nothing we didn’t know before. She’s a corrupt, lying warmonger with a record of policy debacles. He’s a stew of conservative talking points and failed policy nostrums, personal behaviors perhaps no worse than many other billionaires, spiced with occasional sharp perceptions. Neither of them are nice people. I wouldn’t want to have a beer with him, and if I had coffee with her, I’d be sure to bring a taster.

    Tactically, Trump did well (although the Beltway is going to go nuts on Putin and Trump not rolling over for a stolen election* like Gore did). If Trump had brought his game to this level in debates one and two, he’d be a lot closer.

    NOTE * Not that Trump is correct to say that voter fraud is significant; that’s one of the many conservative talking points that are just wrong.

    1. jgordon

      I would have gone along with you on that a few days ago. However please explain why Democrats are systematically engaging in election fraud, as proven by videos over the past two days, if it has no impact. I changed my opinion on this subject specifically because of these videos by the way.

      1. WJ

        Problem is that if Trump calls out election fraud, he won’t be understood by his base, who for various reasons prefer to believe that elections are rigged by busloads of sweaty brown people with fake ID’s rather than by a well-dressed white man sitting at a computer.

        1. kimsarah

          And Hillary is against Citizens United, now that she has been the one who has benefited the most and won’t need it anymore.

    2. HBE

      It really seemed both were focused on appealing to their tribes and not much else. There certainly appeared to be no attempt to reach “undecideds” or independents.

      Maybe because internal polls show they are mostly staying home or voting third party? So no point (al la CNN changing 3Rd party to “undecideds”).

      Basically, scare your tribe into showing up to vote, but only your tribe. Not even a passing shout out to independents on positions (except trump on Russia)

      Trump: Abortion, immigrants, trade, taxes (all tribal approved)

      Clinton: evil trump, abortion, identity politics, etc. (only tribal approved).

      1. polecat

        Again, I say they should’ve both been given skateboards … and a choice of the trident or a pike ..and then allowed to go at it …..

        ….while answering to the moderator’s questions .. of course ! ‘:]

        Double-plus good if Chris was decked out in a Roman Centurion’s gear ….. holding a staff

    3. alex morfesis

      does he want to win…is he afraid of winning…could think of a half a dozen pivots which would scrape off 10-15% of black, hispanic and female votes from $hillary that would get her to have a magic heart attack the week of the election to deal with her potential loss…

      but he would have to go to the fringee side of those three groups and give them a very big hug…

      something he is not going to do…

      so about the new political parties…

      the five that I hope spring to life in the next 12 months…a few names…

      the re-elect party….

      bernaze sauce extreme…most people really have no clue about their local politicians…

      oh look agnes…watson is running for re-elect(ion)…

      the party party party…

      because everyone loves a gr8 party…

      the true green party…

      because the current set of greens are a bit too ripe and brownish from sitting in the lower tray of the refrig all this time…

      the bull moose party…

      because old brands are back in vogue (see netflix)

      the republicrat party…

      because comfort food…

    4. EGrise

      I initially read that as “bring a Taser”…

      Perhaps one would do well to bring both: a taster with a Taser.

  94. alex morfesis

    on c-span…huma keeps whispering to her…we have to go…we have to go…and $hillary is not going…interesting dynamic…

    finally she is off camera….

    1. Lambert Strether

      Just in terms of tone, whenever Clinton says something appalls her, it makes me think “Gee, that might be a good idea!” Not that it is, but that’s my reaction at this point.

    2. polecat

      With that forced smile of HER’s …. I wouldn’t get within 5 kilometers of the bloody white hag !

      1. TheCatSaid

        Amidst the Clinton focus there was one brief shot of Trump’s family joining him on the stage, but after that lengthy & constant focus on Clinton. didn’t go back to Trump.

    1. crittermom

      I watched a prime time show (on my computer) recently and noted it had a several second shot of a street sign named Clinton that had no bearing whatsoever to the story. (Having become a cynic during this election, I now notice small things like that)
      Swell. Subliminal messaging it seems, since apparently all the in-your-face-naming (‘Clinton, Clinton’!) wasn’t judged to be sufficient.

      The Clinton dynasty needs to be brought down asap. Their grip and influence is even more than most realize, I suspect.

  95. Qrys

    I thought Trump did pretty well, said more about “jobs” than Clinton, which is usually a smart move. Not a lot of specifics. Closing minute was a flop though.

    Clinton spent far too long accusing Russian hackers, which she can’t substantiate, and people care less about than the content of the leaked information.

    Clinton also tried too hard to show she’s knowledgeable about foreign policy getting too far into the weeds on Middle East strategy, so basically talking over the heads of most people. Her closing statement was pretty good and well rehearsed (has she used this elsewhere?)

    1. Roger Smith

      Very oddly rehearsed, especially considering that Wallace mentioned they had agreed to no closers originally.

  96. Skippy

    America is Good and therefore Great…. barf~~~~~~~~~~~~~ its like a constipated Bernays going blind trying to push the load out…

    Disheveled Marsupial… Its hard to find or conceptualize a more epic tautology in human history…..

    1. WJ

      But what does this really mean? It sounds like state-party politics in-speak but I am not certain I understand what is being said. Here’s the fuller quote from the email you link to:

      “Presently the Chair has given the line to Hillary in 20 of the 21 counties which only assures that Joe Biden, Bernie Sanders will not be a factor in N.J. Also, all of the major city mayors are aligned with us as well.”

      Could mean lots of things, not all of them shady, no?

  97. Lambert Strether

    Biggest muffed issue:

    Wallace asks Clinton if she’d shoot down a Russian plane that violated her no-fly zone.

    Clinton dodges, Wallace does not press her, Trump does not press her either. “No, Hillary, I’m anxious to know. How badly do you want a new war, this time with Russia?” or some such.

    1. johnnygl

      That is why i think trump lost. He cannot afford to miss those opportunities. I’ve got a few beers in me so i’m missing dodges. Trump should have smelled blood and hammered those dodges. He only picked at her over the ‘open borders’

      I stand by my opinion of chris wallace being the best and this is really awkward but fox has great post-debate commentary. Am i just wasted? I swear they really are being fair and balanced. Maybe they are doing their job because of their mixed feelings on trump?

      1. WJ

        Fox is probably more free to push Clinton because their networks of political access are less tied to her campaign than all the other outlets, who seem scared shitless of being thought to cause the slightest embarrassment for her. One upside to her presidency will be watching Wolf Blitzer and Chuck Todd try to outdo one another like two beaten dogs in performing the requisite rituals of submission.

  98. EndOfTheWorld

    I attempted to listen to the debate, but as soon as I heard Chris Wallace’s voice I turned it off in revulsion. Oh well, I’ll be able to read about it.

  99. Edward

    I thought the questions in this debate were better then the last one. The answers from the candidates were still mostly hot air. How many nanoseconds would a President Clinton need to decide she actually likes trade agreements and Wall Street giveaways and the resulting contributions after all? I liked that fact that Trump was calling out Clinton on her miserable record, even though his facts/critique often seemed garbled/superficial. I was also glad he was questioning the validity of our elections, although his reasons sounded wrong. I found Wallace’s suggestion that questions of election fraud should be ignored for the sake of unity disturbing. When a journalist says something like this you have to wonder what crimes they are covering up in their own reporting for “unity”. I agreed with Clinton that Trump’s economic and immigration plans are bogus nonsense.

    If Trump becomes president I expect his truth-telling will end. As an outsider, speaking “truth to power” helps him nut it would hurt him as an insider.

  100. clarky90

    The Weasels (Clintons/Democrats) are trying to take over Toad Hall (USA)! Vote for Mr Toad (Donald J Trump) and save The Republic (The Just State).

    I enjoyed watching the debate. and reading everybody’s comments. It feels like Toad Hall in the good days, before the rigging.

  101. Qrys

    Looks like John T. Harvey didn’t waste any time:

    Another Thing Donald Trump And Hillary Clinton Get Wrong In This Election: The National Debt

    5. The private sector cannot consistently generate sufficient demand to create jobs for everyone who wants one. As technology and productivity have increased, so it has become more difficult. Entrepreneurs cannot be blamed for adding self-checkout lanes, they have families and stockholders. But it means the store can sell the same volume of output with fewer employees–unemployment therefore rises. (For more, see “Why the Private Sector NEEDS the Government to Spend Money.”)

    Hence, we need the public sector to spend in deficit so that a.) the private sector can net save and b.) jobs are created to supplement those generated by the market system. And it creates neither a default risk nor inflation–unless we are already at full-employment, which means we don’t need to be spending that much in the first place! It is noteworthy that when, in the midst of the Great Depression, the government decided to try to reduce the deficit, unemployment jumped from 14% (after having fallen from nearly 25%) to 19%. Once WWII hit, however, any worries about government spending went right out the window and unemployment plummeted to 1.9%. There’s no reason we can’t be there right now. Only bad policy can stand in our way.

  102. Eleanor Rigby

    I may have to re-watch to make sure I have this right, but I was shocked that Chris Wallace said it would be 2-minute answers and then 10 minutes of free discussion.

    But, with the first topic about the Constitution, after the 2-minute answers, he immediately asked Clinton a question about partial-birth abortion …. wth did that come from? I have not heard either candidate talking much about this … Trump has been tongue-tied about that earlier in the year, and it’s not one of his big points, anyway. Now, watching the C-Span post-debate calls, people are harranguing Clinton for wanting to kill babies in the days before birth, when she wouldn’t do anything to touch Roe v. Wade, so it’s a false issue. That didn’t come from Trump; it came from the moderator!!!!!

    I feel the whole debate as sandbagged at that point, and it freed the topic about women to get pivoted to Russia.

  103. HidingHandle

    Trying again. Under assumed name:) Have no luck commenting for days.

    Shows as in moderation. Must be my old name. Have no idea why I am blocked

    1. WJ

      That’s just Putin propaganda. Don’t believe it. Real Americans, like President Obama and the Washington Post, are confident in our elections. Plus, unless you can show me written explicit proof of a quid pro quo arrangement between Soros and Clinton the fact that he’s heavily invested in voting machines is irrelevant. Corruption isn’t a kind of fog or cloud produced by conflicts of interest, large sums of money, and special access; it’s more clear cut; there is or there is not a proven quid pro quo; you are or you are not pregnant; a number is or is not even. Don’t let terrorists like Assange and Putin ruin your faith in our democracy. They hate us for our public/private positions, remember that.

      1. Roger Smith

        Real Americans, like President Obama and the Washington Post, are confident in our elections

        Unless of course the results show Clinton losing, then Russia is hacking everything.

      2. TheCatSaid

        Exactly! Like all the proven stolen elections, including those judged fraudulent in courts of law. They were all virgin births; they just “happened”! Miracles! Or an Act of Nature!

        Miracles and Acts of Nature are not corruption!

        Thank goodness NC commenters understand these crucial distinctions!

  104. Jeremy Grimm

    I watched my “Back-to-the-Future” DVDs instead of listening to the debate. Scanning the comments here confirmed my DVDs were the better choice.

    I feel as if we’re stuck in some alternate future not quite as bad as Biff World but genuinely surreal and increasingly horrifying.

    I think I’ll drink a little more homemade mead and watch my DVD of “Amelie” for good cheer.

  105. Fiver

    Let the real nightmare begin.

    We will look back at the period from the Snowden revelations to the torrent of e-scandals/Wikileaks that should have, but did not, bring down a major pillar of the gigantic bi-partisan DC crime syndicate, as the high-water mark of the Internet as a critical alternative source of vital information and its potential organizational capacity for the always-faint hope it had presented to progressive democratic forces all over the globe that evidence and argument and some semblance of the rule of law might yet prevail. We can kiss those days good-bye.

    When the entire apparatus of power, as has only just begun to be documented and analyzed (there will be at least one solid book along with a score of ‘journalist’-penned frauds), colludes at every level to ensure that no matter what happens, its Chosen candidate will prevail, and the vast majority of what one might term the ‘thinking’ or ‘better informed’ portion of the population in their many millions do absolutely nothing in response, well, at that point it truly is over.

    From here on in, all ‘debate’ or ‘discussion’ or ‘argument’ in the mainstream re the US political process is void of meaning. The victory of the powerful over the public interest is at this juncture so complete it’s absolutely evident liberal democracy in the US is dead. The Exceptionalists do not intend ever to yield the ball to mere citizens – and why should they when the best we have been able to muster over the last 40 years is “Please, sir. Please, mum. Please don’t destroy us all. Please. We won’t complain again no matter how many of Them it costs. Please mum? Please?”

    ‘Course plotted and laid in, Admiral’

    ‘Very well. On my mark, Commander. All hands, this is Admiral Clinton. Take your battle stations. Repeat. All hands to battle stations. We are engaging the Borg. Good luck. Admiral out.’


    ‘Yes, Second Thought.’

    ‘Forgive me, but I must remind you the Borg destroyed a fleet of Federation capital ships at Arcyon Nebula this morning.’

    ‘What’s your point, Second?’

    ‘Allow me to recall, Admiral, that we launched an unprovoked surprise attack on them and we have no idea what they hit us with. It is frankly suicide to seek a fight now before we’ve developed counter-measures for their heavy weapons – we cannot win, Admiral’

    ‘You are relieved, Commander Thought. Get off of my bridge. Prepare phasers. Fire !’

    ‘No effect, Admiral’

    ‘What? What do you mean ‘no effect’? That’s impossible. Fire again!!

    ‘Admiral. The Borg are powering up their primary weapon. Admiral? Admiral !..’

    ‘There’s no place like home. There’s no place like home. There’s no place like home…’

    This little dramatization is about judgment, not a realistic depiction of relative capability.

    1. Fiver

      Clinton follows up on Obama’s Googlization of the White House (one can only imagine the advantages of customized, enhanced information mining/creating/disseminating/hiding capabilities) starting with a giant pitch to e-education already proven as disastrous as predicted by any thinking observer long ago. But incredibly lucrative they thrive, what with giant profit margins and virtually no risk as the Government mired in perpetual debt already funds every shoddy, rotten, scam or scheme or bubble cooked up by corporations and crony insiders, typically professionals, as well as all the failures so long as they are big enough.

      But the far more important story is what Silicon Valley now has its sights on and it is precisely there that I believe the Internet as we have known it will be replaced with one stripped entirely of privacy, fundamentals of free speech and ideas, any form of serious discussion pertaining to any information not vetted and approved by either the Government or a major player (Google, Facebook, NBC, Microsoft, NYT, etc.). Any talk of 9/11, Israel, regime-change operations or other essentially ‘banned’ subjects in msm would be the same for Internet. We’ll need our libraries again, as serious works will again become the only places to find people willing to tell the truths of events accurately – though maybe not in the ‘best’ schools.


  106. ewmayer

    As is my wont, skipped the debate – got some work done while listening to Game 4 of the NLCS on radio. Thanks to Lambert and our crack staff of reader-drinkers willing to risk their hepatic function to watch the noisome spectacle unfold.

    Random musings collected as I perused downward through the comments:

    o “Clinton–Supreme Court “should represent all of us”. That’s a new one.” — Hey, she didn’t specify what she meant by “us”. Based on her lengthy history, it should be clear that her “us” = the Looter Elite. Because if she did actually mean “us” here more inclusively – not because she believes in it but because it sounds nice as a ‘public position’ – one might be lead to wonder why there are, for instance, no Protestants on the court. Nor Hindus, nor Muslims, nor atheists…

    o “Clinton: Need Supreme Court stand up for women LBTQ” – Lettuce, Bacon and Tomato Quesadilla? I might could stand up for one of those myself.

    o “CLINTON Respect Second Amendment. But 33K year die…” — And how many died last year in Iraq, Afghanistan, Syria and Libya? Is there a “loophole” we can close to stop that slaughter? Whoops, there I go, flying off an a “wild tangent” again. Sorry! We now return you to our discussion of how many NRA staffers were groped by (pronounced with supercilious whiny nasal emphasis) Dawn-ahld, which is in progress.

    o Abortion: Can any of the readers tell me whether Trump’s current “the states should decide” position is consistent with his pre-candidacy persona, or is it shameless pandering to the GOP base? I should add: I am 10% pro-choice, if for no other reason than that no mother should be forced to bring as appalling a person into this world as is embodied by either of tonight’s Master Debaters.

    o Trump on the Axis of Evil Illegal Immigrants — I see he’s still ignoring my Big Ditch idea of extending the Rio Grande portion of the border 1000 miles westward to the Pacific by way of a huge moat, stocked with crocs and piranhas, and whose would create huge numbers of good-paying engineering and construction jobs. What a p*ssy – sometimes I just want to grab him and give him what for. Wait, what’s that you say about “misogyny”? Just for saying I wanted to grab that p*ssy? How can it be misogynist if that p*ssy is a man? Ah well, too late … I hereby take myself out of the running for the 2020 presidential election…

    o The Putin is trying to interfere with U.S. immigration policy now, too? You bastard!

    o “Clinton now talking about how to control the debt, do it like Big Bill.” — You mean, blow another DotCom bubble to transiently boost tax revenues, and let the bust land in the lap of the sucker who succeeds you?

    o “Clinton says we have a lot of work to do. Syria etc. We have to keep our eye on ISIS, we need an “intelligence surge”” — Because, you know, it’s the, you know, “smart” thing to do. And it’s already been tested – on our own citizens!

    o “She says she was going after ISIS when he was doing The Apprentice.” — Going after them in what way? Perhaps to convince them to take even more CIA cash and ex-Libya weapons smuggled through the Benghazi consulate? Or maybe to ask them to up their volume of oil sales to Turkey?

    o @WJ — Ha, ha, that snark about The Good and The Great was so awesome, it was bigly awesome!

    o “CLINTON I am encouraged there is an effort by Iraq in Syria.” — Effort by Iraq to do what? Convince the ISIS factions in Iraq to emigrate to Syria?

    o “Trump “I’m going to create the kind of country we used to be”.” — Before or after the Civil War? If the latter, then before or after the Civil Rights Movement of the 60s?

    o “CLINTON When did he think the country was great? Trump has been criticizing our government for decades. He was criticizing President Reagan. To the debt, I won’t add a penny to the debt. We are going where the money is.” — On the latter point, I believe her – throughout Team Clinton’s career, they have shown an unending willingness to “go where the money is.”

    1. TheCatSaid

      o @WJ — Ha, ha, that snark about The Good and The Great was so awesome, it was bigly awesome!

      It should go into an NC Hall of Fame comment section. For any that missed it, it’s here. All-time great summary of the 2016 debates.

  107. ewmayer

    And lest we forget, a word from our sponsors, who as always remind you, that there are effective treatments for electile dysfunction. See your doctor!

    1. jgordon

      Makes sense. The whole Hillary campaign is staged. Scratch one millimeter beneath the surface and there’s nothing there.

    2. Bjornasson

      Also, I heard her mention it in both this and the previous debate and her way of speaking was so unemotional you could almost hear the gears in her head going “Hammer it home Hillary, we have to make this mental image stick.” For all his faults, Trump at least knows how to pretend to care about something – his “it’s horrible” “it’s a disaster” come across as much more honest intonations than Hillary’s attempts at the same.

  108. Mark Alexander

    I didn’t watch the debate, so am basing the following solely on what I read here (and many thanks to Lambert and commenters) — but apparently Bernie Sanders was the real winner of the debate:

    Trump: Bernie hates you!
    Clinton: But Bernie hates you even more! Neener neener!

  109. Matthew G. Saroff

    I played the debate drinking game.

    My son acted as my safety buddy.

    At 10 pm, he turned off the TV and took my booze because he was worried that I was going to suffer alcohol poisoning.

    Hammered is the only way that I can listen to either of them,

  110. fosforos

    Why all the talk about an “election” when it is clear, has been for ages, that we’re headed for a Coronation–one whose legitimacy and prospects pale in comparison to that of….Boris Godunov.

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