"First they ignore you, then they ridicule you, then they fight you, then you win." -- Mahatma Gandhi

Quote of the Day: Arps “Hillary Won Round One With Jab Points, Not Hard Blows”

September 27th, 2016 by mopns · No Comments

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Guest column submitted by political consultant and Move-On-Up.org founder Christopher Arps.

I set the bar very low for Donald Trump at last night’s first presidential debate at Hofstra University in New York City. Trump in my opinion had two hurdles to get over in this first debate in order for his performance to be deemed a success for him.

One, look and act presidential. Two, don’t say anything overly outlandish or controversial. For the first two thirds of the debate, Trump was holding his own against Hillary who was obviously better prepared and a seasoned debater.

Trump scored points when he talked about his economic themes like keeping manufacturing jobs in this country and lowering tax rates for companies “big and small” from 35% to 15%. He also kept Clinton on the defensive regarding trade policy and her past support for the Trans Pacific Partnership trade deal that President Obama ardently supports.

The debate was essentially a draw until Trump once again felt the need to overly defend his initial opposition to the Iraq War – even though non partisan fact checkers have proven time and time again that Trump did in fact initially support President Bush’s invasion of Iraq.

It was an unnecessary distraction that literally delved into the bizarre when Trump invoked conservative talk show host Sean Hannity’s name into his defense by claiming Hannity told him in private conversations that Trump indeed initially opposed the war and all the media had to do was “ask him.”

Another self-inflicted miscue by Trump was his response in regards to the Justice Department’s suits against him and his late father for rental discrimination in the 1970’s. Their real estate development company paid millions of dollars in fines to the government but admitted no wrong doing.

Instead of denying he and his father discriminated against African American and Hispanic applicants, Trump said, “I was very young….We, along with many, many other companies throughout the country — it was a federal lawsuit — were sued. We settled the suit with zero — with no admission of guilt. It was very easy to do.”

Two weeks ago, Trump attempted to put the “Birther” issue to rest by finally admitting that President Obama was a U.S. citizen. Everyone knew this was going to be an issue in the debate and one of Hillary’s best opportunities for scoring points and motivating her less than enthusiastic African American base to come out for her in November.

Instead of saying I put this issue to rest, next question, The Donald doubled down. I think I did a great job and a great service not only for the country, but even for the president, in getting him to produce his birth certificate.”

I believe these are mistakes Trump can weather because they are not new issues or allegations to the public. A major mistake in my opinion was his responses to the assertions by Hillary that Trump doesn’t pay any federal income taxes or that he made money off the backs of other’s misfortune during the housing crisis:

CLINTON: Donald was one of the people who rooted for the housing crisis. He said, back in 2006, “Gee, I hope it does collapse, because then I can go in and buy some and make some money.” Well, it did collapse.

TRUMP: That’s called business, by the way.

CLINTON: [M]aybe he doesn’t want the American people, all of you watching tonight, to know that he’s paid nothing in federal taxes, because the only years that anybody’s ever seen were a couple of years when he had to turn them over to state authorities when he was trying to get a casino license, and they showed he didn’t pay any federal income tax.

TRUMP: That makes me smart.

Admittedly, I am not a Trump supporter, but I am also not a Never Trumper. Trump still needs to earn my vote and support and the last month or so with his new campaign manager keeping him half way disciplined has gone a long way towards earning my support.

To those like me who are loyal Republicans not committed to Trump yet, or those who are Independents and on the fence about Donald, I don’t believe his performance last night will help or harm him in the long run in the polls.

He lost this first debate but it wasn’t a knock out blow to Trump’s presidential aspirations. He must be more disciplined and prepared in the second and third debates and not take Hillary’s bait to travel down a rabbit hole of his own making.

Round one has Hillary slightly ahead on points, but there were no devastating blows and Hillary won round one with Jab points, not hard blows. I can’t wait for round two!

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