October 10, 2016
Last night's presidential debate at Washington University in St. Louis provided much of the anticipated drama, but not the final curtain.
Trump's campaign has been in free-fall since Friday's release of the 2005 Access Hollywood audio tape capturing lewd and misogynist comments by Trump.
The GOP Nominee has since been publicly rebuked by his running mate, the Republican Leadership and RNC, and 20+ Governors and Members of Congress have rescinded their endorsements.
On Monday, House Speaker Paul Ryan reportedly urged House Republicans seeking re-election to "do what's best for you and your district," concerning support for the GOP presidential nominee.
"The Speaker is going to spend the next month focused entirely on protecting our congressional majorities." - Paul Ryan Spokeswoman
Trump, who set the stage with a theatrical, pre-debate news conference starring four female former Bill Clinton accusers, maintained comparatively more reserve in his debate performance.
In a CNN/ORC instant post-debate poll voters gave HRC a decisive 57% -34% win over Trump, but 63% still credited Trump with outperforming their expectations.
During the tense and contentious 90-minute face-off, the two candidates, who declined to shake hands at the outset, traded barbs while addressing questions on the economy, terrorism, their qualifications, and most notably: each other.
On her qualifications vs.Trump's history of discrimination: I want to be the president for all Americans,regardless of your political beliefs, where you come from, what you look like, your religion.
On her strategy to combat domestic terrorism: "We are not at war with Islam. It is a mistake and plays into the hands of terrorists to act as though we are."
On the Access Hollywood Tape: "He has said the video doesn't represent who he is. But I think it's clear to anyone who heard it that it represents exactly who he is.
On the Supreme Court: "I would want to see the Supreme Court reverse Citizens United... A Supreme Court that will stick with Roe v. Wade and marriage equality."
On Energy: "I think we can be the 21st Century clean energy superpower."
On what she respects about Trump: "I respect his children. His children are incredibly able and devoted, and I think that says a lot about Donald"
Responding to numerous accusations from Trump: "So much of what he's just said is not right, but he gets to run his campaign any way he chooses. When I hear something like that, I am reminded of what my friend, Michelle Obama, advised us all: When they go low, you go high."
On Clinton's emails: "If I win, I am going to instruct my attorney general to get a special prosecutor to look into your situation."
On Clinton: "We have a divided nation because of people like her. And believe me, she has tremendous hate in her heart."
To the Moderators: "She went over a minute over and you don't stop her. I go a second over and you... it's really very interesting."
Responding to Hillary's statement, it's just awfully good that someone with the temperament of Donald Trump is not in charge of the law in our country. Trump: "Because you would be in jail."
On Hillary's electoral history: "Bernie Sanders... never had a chance. And I was so surprised to see him sign on with the devil."
On what he respects about Clinton: "She doesn't quit. She doesn't give up. I respect that, she's a fighter"
It will be several days before polling numbers will accurately reflect the full impact of the last 72 hours, but the Horse Race #s as of today:
RealClearPolitics polling average: Clinton 48.3% to Trump 42.5%.
PredictIt's Win Probability: Clinton 81% to Trump 19%
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Next up: Wednesday, October 19th: third and final Presidential debate in Las Vegas, Nevada.
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