Insults, acrimony dominate an unusually bitter presidential debate
By Washington Post
(A sad state of affairs a former superpower argues bitterly amongst themselves on TV !)
cover-Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump (left) and Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton speak during the second presidential debate at Washington University in St. Louis, Missouri, Oct. 9, 2016.
The second presidential debate in the race to become the 45th president of the United States took place on Sunday night. Republican candidate Donald Trump seemed to admit that he had avoided paying federal income taxes for years. He said he had used special tax laws to his benefit.
Trump did not provide any details about how many years he had avoided paying income taxes. However, he acknowledged again that he had. “I absolutely used it,” he said, when moderator Anderson Cooper asked.
An Unusually Bitter Debate
“I understand the tax code better than anybody that’s ever run for president,” he said. Trump argued that Clinton could not fix the system because her campaign had received donations from Wall Street businesspeople.
Clinton, in her response, argued that Trump would only cement an unfair tax system in place. “Donald always takes care of Donald, and people like Donald,” she said.
The second presidential debate was unusually bitter. The two candidates exchanged insults, which is typically unheard-of in the polite tradition of presidential debates.
In this debate, Clinton and Trump interrupted each other often. Trump even once referred to Clinton as “the devil.” He promised that — if elected — he would order the Justice Department to re-investigate her for her use of a private email address and server to handle government business. Clinton said at one point that Trump lives “in an alternate” world.
Trump Speaks To Controversial Screening Plan
The debate topics ranged from recent news to the candidates’ policy stances.
Trump said his proposal to ban foreign Muslims from entering the United States has “morphed.” However, he declined to give details about how it had changed.
Moderator Martha Raddatz tried to gain clarification. “Would you please explain whether or not the Muslim ban still stands?” she asked.
“It’s called extreme vetting,” Trump said, but he did not say much more about how the vetting process would work. He also failed to explain how it would be different from the current screening methods for Muslims who enter this country.
Trump Threatens To Investigate Clinton If Elected
Earlier, Trump made an unusual threat, unlike anything in recent presidential debates. He promised that — if he was elected — he would instruct the Justice Department to investigate his rival.
Trump seemed to be referring to Clinton’s use of a personal email address and server to handle government business while she was secretary of state. That has already been the subject of an FBI investigation. The investigation ended with FBI Director James Comey calling Clinton’s actions “extremely careless” but stopped short of recommending criminal charges.
“It’s just awfully good that someone with the temperament of Donald Trump is not in charge of the law in our country,” Clinton said.
“Because you’d be in jail,” Trump said.
Trump “Not Proud” Of Comments On Video
The first half-hour of the debate was dominated not by questions from the audience, but by interruptions by Trump himself. At one point, Trump referred to Senator Bernie Sanders’ endorsement of Clinton as a deal with “the devil.”
The debate opened with a question as to whether the campaigns were setting a good example for the nation’s youth. It quickly turned, however, to discussion about the recent release of a damaging video for Trump. In the video, recorded in 2005, Trump is heard talking about touching women without their permission.
“I didn’t say that at all. I don’t think you understood what was said. This was locker-room talk,” Trump said. “Certainly I’m not proud of it. But this is locker-room talk.”
Trump Different From Other Republicans, Says Clinton
Clinton, in her response, said that she considered Trump different than past Republican nominees.
“I never questioned their fitness to serve. Donald Trump is different,” she said. “What we all saw and heard on Friday was Donald talking about women, what he thinks about women, what he does to women, and he has said that the video doesn’t represent who he is … It represents exactly who he is.”
The release of the 2005 video set off a storm of criticism from Trump’s fellow Republicans. Dozens of elected officials said Saturday they could no longer support Trump. This included John McCain, a respected Republican senator who ran for president against Barack Obama in 2008. A growing number of Republicans called for him to drop out of the race. Even his running mate, Indiana Governor Mike Pence, said he could not defend Trump’s remarks.
Trump was scheduled to campaign with Paul Ryan, Speaker of the House of Representatives, on Saturday in Wisconsin, but Ryan asked the nominee not to attend. Pence was scheduled as a stand-in, but he, too, decided to stay away. Although Ryan criticized Trump’s remarks, he has not withdrawn his support for the candidate.
(Ed-the coverage of the NY Times is even more amusing)
Bitter exchanges dominate debate
Tawdry accusations and character attacks at candidates’ 2nd clash
BY PATRICK HEALY AND JONATHAN MARTIN
Donald J. Trump and Hillary Clinton collided in an almost unremittingly hostile debate on Sunday night, a 90-minute spectacle of character attacks, tawdry allegations, and Mr. Trump’s startling accusation that Mrs. Clinton had “tremendous hate in her heart”