You can't say who really won the debate, because on Friday, news broke, confirming other news from the prior Monday (and general suspicians) indicating that Donald Trump is not fit to be President in Yet Another Way, and his campaign essentially imploded. So, instead, we'll ask, "who won the weekend?"
As you know, I'm the last person to write off Donald Trump. From the very beginning, without fail, I've been warning you that he'll do well, that he'll win the GOP debates, that he'll win various primaries, that he'll win the nomination, etc. All of it. I have never once been wrong about this.
The reason I'm never wrong is because I know something that you also know but that you refuse to admit because it is too painful. Most Americans, perhaps way more than a majority, share one or more opinions with the core Republican political and social philosophy. A smaller number, a minority but not fewer than about 40%, agree with most or all of those points of policy. Added to this Republicans tend to work better in lockstep than Democrats.
And this, dear reader, is why Republicans have been mostly in charge for most of the time since the Republican party became what it is today (staring in the 1970s).
Donald Trump, meanwhile perfectly represents most of that ~40% of Americans, and that is why he is their candidate.
However, more than one thing must be in place to win an election. One of these things is having a large and loyal base, and Trump has that. Another is money, from multiple big donors. Trump had that (including himself) but it is gone (except himself). Another is the support of the party elite and all those great surrogates that go out and stump for you. Trump lost whatever he had along those lines a while back, and as of a couple of weeks ago has had absolutely nothing in the way of surrogate support. It has been just Trump and Pence. And now, Pence seems to have stopped campaigning, so it is just Trump over the last few days, today, and tomorrow, at least.
There remained for a while the Basket of Hypocrites, such as Mike Pence, Paul Ryan, Ted Cruz and the others. These are mostly evangelical conservatives who were willing to throw every one in the country under the bus just to defeat Hillary Clinton, regardless of the cost. But with the culmination of sufficient evidence to regard Donald Trump as a supporter and likely doer of sexual assault on arbitrary females as a given part of his privilege, even the Hypocrites can not survive being associated with him.
And for this reason, over the weekend, these rats left the ship.
As of some time over the last 48 hours or so, the Trump Campaign is over, and this is true regardless of any debate.
Then, there was the debate.
One could argue that Trump did better than expected, and Clinton could have done better, but everyone who is not extremely partisan thinks Clinton pretty much won.
So, what do the polls show? A new poll by NBC and the Wall Street Journal, that does not include the debate (because it was conducted on Saturday and Sunday, before the debate) puts Clinton at 46% to Trump's 35% in a four way match. Head to head, the spit is 52% to 38%, so if some of those third party snowflakes get with the program and actually vote in the election, the spread widens from 11% to 14%.
Those are double digit numbers. We've not seen double digit numbers from a major and legit poll since, I think, the start of the national campaign.
I'm pretty sure the debate did not push the polls back the other way. I'm pretty sure this weekend poll reflects the current situation, more or less. Of course, it is only one poll.
Looking at phone polls by major pollsters and/or major news agencies, excluding one outlier because its numbers are so far different (FOX), from September 1 to the present (including the poll mentioned above) we get this from HuffPo Pollster:
OK, now, pretend I'm wearing a Steve Kornacki mask and I've got a sharpie.
I could do more, but I think you get the point.
I expect more scandalous news.
Last week there were indications that the NYT had more about taxes that would eventually come out. I've heard rumors of a tape with Trump saying the "N-word." Right now there is strong evidence that Trump is on board with the whole idea of sexual assault, and there is already some information out there about this, but with the Access Hollywood tapes out, may be we will start seeing actual victims, if any, come to the fore. And, there are known to be tapes from The Apprentice said to be similar to, maybe worse than, the Access Hollywood tapes.
These things will not come out today, because today, the news cycle is still finishing with Friday's information, and still working on the Debate, so any editor or producer with something to say will wait until tomorrow. So, if something is out there, may be we'll hear of it then. a few days ago I suggested that we'd be seeing approximately one Trump news dump about every four days until the election. The time span between Monday's revelations (already forgotten) and Friday's was about four days, right? Then there was friday ..let's see ... (counting on fingers) ... friday, saturday, sunday monday, ... TUESDAY! So, Tuesday, or maybe Wednesday. Stay tuned.
And now Paul Ryan has officially thrown Trump under the bus: He will no longer campaign with him or support him in any way. He's directing support to try to preserve as many down ballot Conservatives as possible.
I would have thought that HC strategists would have urged her to not go toe to toe with "the Donald"
she did not really need to do much more than keep upright, calm and not insult the constitution - to "win"
the Donald was street fighting to save his campaign after all
I find his language and delivery so awkward, verging on the deranged tbh - endless repeating of phrase and sound bites that were rubbish the first time round
The just as bad as trump Paul Ryan is also working on developing a do nothing useful strategy against Clinton in case she wins. From the Chicago Tribune website:
A person who was on Ryan’s conference call with GOP lawmakers said the speaker declared that he will “spend his entire energy making sure that Hillary Clinton does not get a blank check with a Democrat-controlled Congress.” The person wasn’t authorized to be quoted by name and demanded anonymity.
Sorry, male typing syndrome again: Chicago Sun Times, not Chicago Tribune.
I'm so happy.
tadaa: I basically agree with you on strategy. She could have in some cases said thing in her time that countered him without making it look like she was being defensive.
He Gish Galloped her. So, when he said, essentially, "she spent 30 years in government and never made a bill to fix this tax loophole" she could have mentioned, later in time, "I spent 8 years in the senate. I would love to have introduced legislation to close tax loop holes used by the 1%, but the Senate can't introduce such bills, only the house. That is why it is so important that Americans vote for Democrats in their house congressional districts this year."
No mention of Donald, but demonstrates his ignorance (about her 30 year career and about how Congress works), and helps with GOTV for Dems.