“It,” said CNN presenter Jake Tapper, who looked like he had swallowed a rotten egg, “was a hot mess inside a dumpster fire inside a train wreck… the worst debate I have ever seen; in fact, it was not even a debate. It was a shame.
Incredibly, he downplayed the horror of last night’s first presidential showdown in this US election cycle between Donald Trump and Joe Biden.
Tapper’s colleague Dana Bash, a woman who is not used to hyperbole or blasphemy, simply said, “It was a shitty show. “
Even that was generous.
I got up at 2 a.m. in the UK to watch it, and I can honestly say, hand to heart and without fear of contradiction, that it was the most embarrassing and least uplifting sight in the history of modern American politics.
Which, when you think President Bill Clinton was caught lying about cigar sex with a 22-year-old White House intern in the Oval Office, is something.
Last night’s first presidential showdown in this U.S. election cycle between Donald Trump and Joe Biden was the most embarrassing and least edifying spectacle in the history of modern American politics.
The president essentially brought his Twitter game to the debate – a relentless bombardment of abuse, personal jokes, self-righteous guts and blatant lies. But as horrible as Trump is, Biden could and should have done a lot more to counter and exploit the agitated president.
Trump, even by his legendary barbaric standards of debate, was repugnant.
The president essentially brought his Twitter game to the debate – a relentless bombardment of abuse, personal jokes, self-righteous guts and blatant lies.
In the worst of many horrific moments, he refused to condemn white supremacists, and when specifically challenged about the Proud Boys, a transphobic misogynist and transphobic homophobic racist misogynist, he replied, “Proud Boys, take it. step back and stay away! “
This astonishing response to the dog whistle was immediately, sickeningly and unsurprisingly, adopted by the group as an official public presidential endorsement and a call to arms.
In another horribly ugly exchange, Trump interrupted Biden as he spoke fondly of his late-war hero son Beau to smear his other son: “I didn’t know Beau. I know Hunter. Hunter has been kicked out of the military. He was deported, dishonorably returned for cocaine use.
This, like so many things Trump spat out last night, is not true. Hunter was fired, but not in a dishonorable way.
But whether or not it’s true, ignoring a man praising his beloved son who died of a brain tumor just so Trump could poke fun at his other boy was a disgusting low blow that will surely have revolted any onlooker with it. even a half sense. of decency.
The president even mocked Biden for wearing face masks to ward off Covid-19, as if that was something a responsible citizen should be ridiculed for doing when more than 200,000 Americans have already died from the virus. .
I wish I could say that this heinous conduct shocked me.
But it was just Trump who was Trump, even though he was the most bestial and in a way that even made his own team uncomfortable.
“It was too hot,” said Governor Chris Christie, who helped the president prepare for the debate. “With all this heat, you lose the light.
Do you think, Governor?
As for moderator Chris Wallace, one of America’s most respected media figures, I’m sorry to say he has lost control and intrigue, allowing Trump to dominate the proceedings like a tyrant overwhelmed by playing field and therefore let the debate crumble into an almost inaccessible situation. charade
To me, as someone put it on Twitter, Trump looked like a drunken rowdy in a comedy club who keeps hammering deeds into thinking everyone is cheering him on – when in fact, they just want the bad chuntering thrown in.
But horrible as it is, Biden could and should have done a lot more to counter and exploit the restless president.
Instead, the Democratic nominee has been weak and ineffective throughout the debate, failing to deliver real blows to Trump even as America recovers from its evil handling of the pandemic that has led to the worst toll. of coronavirus deaths worldwide and the world’s worst economic collapse.
The challenger struggled with the stats, as he often did in this campaign, at times mumbled inconsistently, and frankly didn’t do much to dispel lingering Republicans-fueled rumors that he was fighting against early onset of senility.
I also found Biden’s constant and strange mocking laugh, even in very serious moments, inappropriate, and irritating.
The cackling was clearly a pre-planned strategy, but it didn’t work.
He should have remained serious, a statesman, and firmly above the bullish melee raging Trump.
Americans are really suffering right now, losing loved ones and livelihoods in great numbers.
They don’t want to laugh in a debate over who to vote for in November – they want leadership, empathy and reassurance.
And all of this was chronically rare last night.
Biden’s biggest mistake was to come down to Trump’s level.
He’s supposed to be the man who will bring courtesy back to the US Presidency.
Yet last night we overheard Mr. Nice Guy calling Trump a “clown,” a “racist” and a “liar,” tell him to “shut up” and make fun of him “keep barking.”
President Donald Trump and First Lady Melania Trump on stage during the debate, alongside Joe Biden and his wife Jill Biden
It’s not civil, it’s just Mr. Bad Guy’s behavior.
As for moderator Chris Wallace, one of America’s most respected media figures, I’m sorry to say he has lost control and intrigue, allowing Trump to dominate the proceedings like a tyrant overwhelmed by playing field and therefore let the debate crumble into an almost inaccessible situation. charade.
Some supporters of the Fox News host have said there is nothing he can do given Trump’s outrageous behavior.
But there was.
As Watergate legend Carl Bernstein tweeted during the unfolding fiasco: “Chris Wallace must stop Trump and insist he follow the rules… and as moderator enforce them… stop the debate for 60 seconds and set the rules. “
This is ultimately what any debate moderator is supposed to do: ask the questions and apply the rules.
By failing to do the latter, Wallace has ruined the debate for the millions of people watching at home.
In any rotten food fight, the winner is the one who comes out of the fray with the least putrid food waste choking his face and torso.
By this very low standard, Biden won – as most post-debate polls have confirmed.
But the sad and sad truth is that no one really won.
Biden’s reputation for civility has been tainted by his ill-advised and stupid chatter.
Trump’s chances of winning independent voters – who will be key to his survival as president – have been dashed by his 90-minute performance.
And Chris Wallace’s image as a smart, tough journalist has been seriously tainted by his dismal failure to control the chaos.
More serious than anything, the mess has done America and the American people a huge disservice.
This US presidential debate has been watched all over the planet and could not have been a worse publicity for the self-proclaimed greatest superpower.
Watching the two election candidates exchange pathetic slurs like bickering school children at such a critical time for the country and the world has been an excruciating, shameful and humiliating debacle that has demeaned everyone involved.
Joe Biden may have ‘won’ but by choosing so foolishly to lie down with rabid attack dog Trump and play him his own naming game, he sadly made sure we all woke up. with bullets.