Donald Trump has attempted to make Hillary Clinton’s lack of stamina a major campaign issue. She’s weak, she’s sick, she’s doesn’t have the fortitude or endurance to be president of the United States.
Like a good long distance runner, Hillary laid back during the start and middle of the debate, then shifted into a gear even some Democrats doubted she possessed.
“I don’t believe Hillary has the stamina,” Trump claimed, as he once again sipped on his glass of water, a la Rubio.
As if anticipating Trump’s charge, Clinton replied, “ Well, as soon as he travels to 112 countries and negotiates a peace deal, a cease fire, a release of dissidents, an opening of new opportunities in nations around the world or even spends 11 hours testifying in front of a congressional committee, he can talk to me about stamina.”
The debate audience, breaking a major ground rule, erupted into applause.
There can be very little doubt that as the debate wore on, Clinton got stronger while Trump seemed to fade. It didn’t help Trump that the last debate topic was on national security, perhaps his weakest subject.
As he rambled on about NATO, Japan and North Korea, his answers became more disjointed and incoherent. After a great start, where Trump more or less held his own, he just couldn’t fake his way through complicated, thorny national security issues.
Of course, Trump supporters will claim their man won the debate while Hillary supporters will give her the thumbs up.
It’s unlikely many minds were changed after the 90-minute debate.
But among the roughly 10% of so-called “undecided voters,” many pundits are expecting to see a slight movement towards the “steady at the helm” Clinton.
Kudos to NBC’s Lester Holt. He did an admirable job moderating the debate and handling Trump’s many interjections. He simply let Trump be Trump.
One down, and two to go.
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