Final Lap of the 2016 Presidential Debate

Courtesy+of+Fox+News%0A
Courtesy of Fox News

Courtesy of Fox News

Courtesy of Fox News

Becca H. '17, Entertainment Page Editor

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The day everyone had been waiting for: Donald Trump and Hilary Clinton’s first face-to-face battle. The two have been taking personal jabs at the other since they each announced their candidacy for their major party’s candidate for president, but on Monday night, they finally clashed in person at the first 2016 presidential debate at Hofstra University in Hempstead, New York.

The debate began at 8 P.M. central time with a short introduction by Lester Holt, anchor of NBC Nightly News and moderator of the debate, stating there was no way all issues could be covered tonight and asking the audience to stay quiet throughout the debate, which proved to be difficult.

Holt chose the three major topics of the debate: “Achieving Prosperity,” “America’s Direction,” and “Securing America.” The “Achieving Prosperity” segment’s first question was, “Why are you a better choice?” and began with Hilary Clinton, due to a coin toss. She stated that if she became president, she would create a fairer economy for everyone through new jobs, raising the national minimum wage and mandating equal pay for women. She also said that she could “shoulder the responsibility” of the presidency better than Donald Trump, who smirked at this remark.

In response, Trump said that the country needed his business thinking and that he would reduce taxes for business, as Ronald Reagan did. Later, Clinton attacked these tax cuts-which would be the biggest for the wealthy ever- and dubbed them, “Trumped-up trickle-down.” She wants an economic system that awards work, not just economic transactions.

Donald Trump started in a more organized fashion than has been seen before. However, from the beginning, Clinton wanted to get under Trump’s skin, and did a very good job at it, until evidently Trump fell into Hilary Clinton’s traps and was shouting 15 minutes into the debate.

A common thought from Trump throughout the debate was that Clinton has been in politics for 30 years, yet she has not fixed America’s problems. According to Trump, he is the new man that America needs to improve.

Attacking China, Trump went on to repetitively state that too many jobs are fleeing the country. Although this problem is significant as he stated, the Republican nominee never stated how the country should or how he would stop this mass relocation.

Clinton stayed on the offensive, needling Trump about his businesses and their bankruptcies. This tactic proved to annoy him even more, especially when Clinton mentioned that he had borrowed $14 million from his father to start his business, far more than he had previously suggested.

Throughout the entire debate, Trump had a difficult time waiting his turn during the debate. Holt had to say, “This is Secretary Clinton’s time,” three times, and certainly let it slide other times. Holt also had to ask him to actually answer the question numerous times.

Overall, there was a big contrast in the preparedness of the two candidates. Clinton obviously prepped for the debate a lot, and embraced this fact. Her possible over-preparedness made some voters, mostly conservative, feel she was not relatable, but made other voters see how much she would prepare for the tough job she would endure as president. After all, an over prepared president is better than an unprepared president during almost all situations regarding the job.

On the other hand, Trump did not seem to prepare at all, which for some reinforced his reputation as a genuine person and not a politician, and displayed that he can think on his feet. However, others saw this as furthering the idea that he would take the presidency as a joke.

Throughout the entire debate, there was a lot of fact-checking done by not only Holt, but also Clinton and Trump. It was hard to determine what was true without googling it for oneself. For example, Clinton confronted Trump for his statement saying that Clinton did not “have the presidential look.” Trump denied this statement saying he actually said “stamina.” With a little digging, it was easy to find that Trump had in fact said “look” and not “stamina.” These two candidates could agree on few subjects, so fact-checkers across America were definitely busily searching, trying to decide who was actually saying facts.

The next time America will see Hillary and Donald face off is Sunday, October 9 at Washington University in St. Louis. Trump has already said he will “hit harder” in the next debate, leaving us fervently waiting to see how he and Clinton will perform next time.

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