September 26, 2016, - 4:59 pm

Does Tonight’s Prez Debate Really Matter? No & It’ll Be a Letdown. Here’s Why . . .

By Debbie Schlussel


Tonight’s Presidential debate between Hillary Rodham Cankles and Donald Trump is being hyped as the “Battle of the Century.” Like you, I’ll be watching. But, in the end, it will have little or no effect on the November election results, and here’s why.

I plan to watch tonight’s debate mostly because I’ll enjoy watching WWE come to politics. It’ll be entertaining. A friend of mine likens Hillary vs. Trump to Godzilla vs. King Kong. I don’t remember what the result was between ‘Zilla and Kong, but they’re both of about equal strength. And while I’ll be voting for Trump in November (and, though I don’t trust him one bit, I voted for him in the primary because I thought he had the best shot of beating Hillary), I think they’re both equals when it comes to flamboyance, loudness, etc. Both of them have prepared a lot for tonight. (Don’t believe Trump’s claim he hasn’t. You know that’s BS designed to trick his opponent.) And I don’t think either of them will do anything incredibly stupid. So, in the end–even though I loathe Hillary–I think it’ll be a draw, with both sides spinning it as their win.

Very few contemporary debates change minds or election results when it comes to general elections. (The primary is a different story–and I believe primary debates helped Trump win the GOP nomination.) And I think this one–as fun as it may be to watch–will be more of the same. It won’t change a thing. In a week, any good lines said tonight will probably be forgotten . . . unless somebody really screws up. And I don’t think that will happen. Both of them will be on their most cautious, best behavior.

Over the weekend, we’ve been treated to the exact same sound bites from past debates by all the major news networks and radio talk show hosts. And all of them have told us that those statements and utterances at the debates made a difference and decided elections. But the truth is, they didn’t. Rush Limbaugh and FOX, NBC, and ABC all showed Al Gore’s snobbish loud sighs during one of the three Presidential debates with George W. Bush. They all said this lost Al Gore the election. But did it? Have you ever met anyone who was undecided and voted for Bush because they didn’t like Al Gore’s sighs? PUH-LEEZE. Didn’t happen. By November (and there was little early voting then like there is now), most people forgot about his sighs. People generally vote on who they think will be better for America (however wrong and misguided they often are in their attribution of that quality to the choices), not what happened at Presidential debates, which are generally forgotten.

Yes, there are a few scant few occurrences at debates that have swayed elections. But they are unique occurrences and well in the past–by a few decades.

There’s the Nixon-Kennedy debate of 1960, in which Richard Nixon had a five o’clock shadow and sweated and JFK looked “handsome” to the eyes of the women who watched on TV. They swayed the election by voting with their vaginas and not their heads. And people who heard the debate on the radio thought Nixon won. But that was 56 years ago. And in the case of Cankles and Trump, they are equally old and equally unattractive. Looks won’t do anything here.

Then, there is the Jimmy Carter-Gerald Ford debate in 1976. Some blame Ford’s loss on his stark debate misstatement that “There is no Soviet domination of Eastern Europe.” But that’s not what lost Ford the election. Ford pardoned Nixon, and in the wake of Watergate and the liberal media, Americans were enticed to choose change and go for a different choice. On top of that, as liberal as Carter turned out to be, he ran to the right of Republican Gerald Ford, who was a RINO moderate. Believe it or not, but Carter appealed to Evangelical Christians and chastised Ford for not being pro-Israel enough. Yes, newsflash: candidates lie (big time) when they campaign. Carter was a stronger campaigner than the milquetoast, “low energy” Ford. He was younger and promised America he would give us a new start. (Sadly, his “new start” was neither new nor a start, just an inept disaster. And we needed another new start in the form of Ronald Reagan to begin to recover from it.)

So, tonight, unless someone really messes up (or Hillary Clinton falls or faints again or can’t stop coughing), I don’t think it will make a difference.

Remember, most Americans already know what they think of both Trump and Cankles. They are the two most well-known candidates in American history. And most people know for whom they are voting. It’s a small sliver of undecideds that tonight’s debate is meant to sway. But if you’re undecided at this point, you’re basically a moron. So nothing they say or do tonight is liable to make an impression. It’s even less likely to remembered by the time November comes. Morons don’t have good memories (though the Dems will definitely get them out to vote.)

I’m still excited to watch tonight, but I think that in the end it won’t really be that exciting. It definitely won’t live up to the hype. I predict it will be a giant letdown. Gone will be much of Trump’s bombast from the primary debates. He can’t talk about Hillary’s penis size (it might rival his own). And a lot of policy jargon will be uttered.

And in the end, tonight’s debate will be an ephemeral memory. Come election day, nobody will care what was said last night. If they can even remember.

There’s only one thing I know for sure about tonight’s debate: when Cankles’ mouth opens, testicles will retract en masse across America.


Do you think tonight’s debate will mean much? What do you predict will happen?

25 Responses

By the end of the debate this evening, it’ll be hypothesized by scholarly political-theorists who are “independent” that doesn’t exhibit cognitive-confirmation bias in their teleological arsenal will determine who won the debate between Ms. Clinton and Mr. Trump. But my assertion tells that Trump will win this, due to him being in better conditional shape than Hillary, who’s allegedly unhealthy with health issues (remember her collapsing two weeks ago on September 11, where she lost one of her shoes in the process that slid underneath the van?).

I think this is Trump’s election to “lose”, due to as I’ve said according to my theoretical perspective is that Ms. Clinton has argued that she’ll continue the same policies that Obama is currently enacting on this nation (okay, she didn’t overtly said it like that, but if you’ve comprehended what she argued, you’ll/we’d figured out what she meant) and it’s not popular and a great degree of the American public are antithetical to Mr. Obama’s policies. Also, Ms. Clinton is the epitome of the “status-quo”, where she’s popular, but unpopular with us the general-body population.

Nor this isn’t me proclaiming that Donald Trump is perfect, he’s FAR from it, the only thing were I’m a little troubled with Trump is on half of his trade-policies, but Trump is right notwithstanding to “TPP”, which will be a detriment to our economy of more and more jobs being outsourced to other nations, where it’ll be a causation of more inequality and fewer opportunities, et al!

Sean R. on September 26, 2016 at 5:29 pm

Yep, the old snarklies are running for cover when Dame Rodham starts talking about the “chilllldren” or when she goes staccato and kicks it up an octave. I’m liable to go screaming from the room like George Costanza.

Larry on September 26, 2016 at 5:32 pm

I am more optimistic that Trump can potentially gain from the debate.

The media campaign against Trump is like nothing I have ever seen. The lies, half-truths, demagoguery has really been something to behold.

I agree with those who think that likeability will play an important role, especially since emotion seems to play such a large role in politics these days. If Trump comes across as a civil human being it will damage some of the incredible media stereotypes about him, even if only for a small number of people.

But I am not sure that the number of undecideds is that small, or confined to a ‘few suburban women’. I think there is ground for him to gain among White working-class women, and even some college students, if he continues to push the idea that massive college endowments should be used to help students’ tuition and expenses, and that he will bring jobs to this country.

I also think he has potential among Blacks. Not very many, but even a few could make a massive difference. There are a number of Black semi-celebrities who are supporting him, and I think they will campaign hard for him. Also some rabble-rousing sectors of the Black community, loathsome as many of them are, have been vocally critical of Hillary. Of course Trump should repudiate their tacit or explicit support, but I am just predicting, not justifying anything or sanctioning anything about these groups.

I agree that he has been preparing hard. I think he understands the media better than Hillary (e.g. his domination of the weekend news with the Gennifer Flowers caper), and prepares last-minute surprises just like Hillary. She had the 19 pages of his ‘lies’, and he has a last-minute release of a complex economic White Paper that I doubt she will be able to master in a few hours. The moderator probably doesn’t have sufficient intelligence to master it.

He can also think fast on his feet, and will not be intimidated by a biased moderator. I’m sure he has been coached extensively on how to handle a biased moderator in a reasonably civil way.

Finally, I expect a few zingers from Trump. He has come up with some good lines in recent days, e.g. making cars in Mexico and not drinking the water in Flint, not vice versa, and the line about Hillary being harder on his supporters than on the Muslim terrorists. It is to be expected that he has developed other one-liners he hopes to use at the appropriate opportunity tonight.

Little Al on September 26, 2016 at 5:38 pm

I wonder if Trump will disappoint everybody by NOT asking Hillary any embarrassing questions, or addressing genuinely critical issues?

In other words, will Trump turn out to be just another Romney?

JRM: I feel like you just hit the target. I have a feeling this is exactly what will happen. DS

John Robert Mallernee on September 26, 2016 at 5:44 pm

My opinion. Hillary will not bring anyone over to her side. Her supporters are her supporters. However Trump loses, gains supporters daily/weekly. If he stay on point, he will actually win people over. Probably is over-hyped, you know Mayweather vs Pacquoi, yeah, but Trump will gain more if he does marginally well and stay on point!

MrBigBrain on September 26, 2016 at 6:34 pm

Although I generally agree that these presidential debates are vastly overrated, they do serve a purpose for most Americans in that they help to solidify “brand loyalty.” It’s a marketing strategy that is not so much geared to getting customers to switch to your brand as it is to help cement brand loyalty–i.e., making you feel comfortable with your choice.

In this sense, Trump has more to gain and Clinton has more to lose. Many who are uncommitted for various reasons, may develop a tilt toward Trump if he makes them more comfortable with his brand. On the other hand, with the Clinton brand, most Americans, even many of the dumb ones, by now know what the Clinton brand means and what they will “get” with a Clinton presidency.

As for debates of old, you just can’t compare the Nixon-Kennedy debates to anything since. That was the last election when you had candidates who were not intellectually challenged, shall we say. Regardless of what you thought of those two candidates, when I’ve watched them on YouTube, you can readily see that both of them are far and away intellectual superior to the likes of Jimmy Carter, Gerald Ford, Romney, the Bushes, the Clintons, Gore, etc. Americans are unlikely to ever get debates at that quality level ever again.

As for JRM’s comment, I agree that Trump won’t be hammering Clinton the way he should, but I don’t think he’ll choke quite the way Romney did either. In other words, he will choose “safe” attacks against her, rather than hitting her where she should be struck.

Meanwhile, Clinton’s psychological advisor — and you know she has one — has been coaching her on how to get Trump to explode or implode emotionally. But that is unlikely to happen as I’m sure that Trump has hired his own psychological coach.

Thus, those who persist in looking for substance, instead of emotional manipulation attempts, are bound to be disappointed with this Trump-Clinton encounter. It’s just not going to happen. Rather, each candidate, regardless of the question put to him/her, will simply respond with a canned, preprogrammed message that conveys little reality or insight, and will simply be emotional confirmation or loyalty branding designed to manipulate you into feeling greater comfort with the candidate that you are already predisposed to vote for. And even if you are truly “undecided” and actually intend to vote, each candidate will still be doing their best to make you comfortable with him/her, rather than in clearly articulating why the other candidate is a bad choice.

So, to put this in Shakespearean terms, look for a debate “full of sound and fury signifying nothing.” Sort of like a “current events” WWF event produced by Vince McMahon.

Ralph Adamo on September 26, 2016 at 6:36 pm

It’s like the Super Bowl. It rarely matches the two-week build-up/

JeffT on September 26, 2016 at 6:41 pm

Trump will make her break down and cry.

There is NO Santa Claus on September 26, 2016 at 7:16 pm

    I was wrong. Trump pulled his punches.

    He DID mention that he had material that was aggressively critical of Hillary and her family, but he didn’t have the heart to use it. Perhaps that was a subtle warning.

    Trump let the Clinton-proposed assault rifle ban pass by without comment.

    In talking about race relationships in America, Trump failed to mention that our race relationships are the worst we’ve seen them in decades in spite of having an African-American President. Perhaps nobody is to blame and the real problem is unrealistic expectations. This stands as a warning to American women who think Hillary will “fix everything” if she wins. But the point wasn’t made because nobody had the courage to go there.

    I didn’t have a stopwatch, but I thought Clinton go more speaking time. She got more puff questions while Trump got the direct-and-dirty ones. Maybe that’s just my perspective.

    Overall, Deb hit the nail on the head. Nobody will remember this debate. It won’t sway voters.

    The only way for Trump to win debates is to continually hammer on Clinton’s record. Watergate, travelgate, voting for the Patriot Act, Voting for war in Iraq, protecting her husband from numerous rape charges; special privileges and a high-salary job for Chelsea. leading a throng of Democrats to Damascus to meet Bashar Al-Assad. Disastrous energy policy leading to a war on coal and the waste of new-found natural gas resources. Polluting policy from wind and solar farms killing wildlife and spreading disease. Continued dependence on petroleum as the prime mover of our transportation system when methanol (derived easily from natural gas) and ethanol are easily manufactured in clean American facilities. A failing electrical grid. Allowing the cost of goods sold by American corporations to enjoy an equal expense write-off when manufactured overseas with no bonus for American labor offered to protect the American labor force. Failing to obtain results from “Ameica’s Affordable Health Care Act” with epipens quadrupling in price and medical costs continuing to skyrocket. Failing to defend Benghazi, blaming the on a you-tube video 5 days after it was evident this was false. deposing Khadaffi (against the wishes of our Italian allies), Embracing the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt while in office, Bashing Israel for building homes, doing nothing while Russia invaded Georgia, doing nothing as China continues to steal American intellectual property, pretending there’s no drug war in Mexico that has claimed over 40,000 lives. Treating every injury (perceived or real) of Palestinians as high-priority while ignoring over 250,000 dead in Syria, and Iraq. Ignoring Yemen. Ignoring the growth of tyranny in Turkey. Ignoring Iranian support for Hezzbollah. Talking about “reaching out to Muslims” while ignoring the vast carnage caused by Muslims murdering Muslims for not being Muslim enough. And lastly, refusing to associate Islam in any way with political and armed hostility toward the United States.

    It didn’t happen last night, just as Debbie said. If it didn’t happen last night, it is not likely to happen at all.


    There is NO Santa Claus

    There is NO Santa Claus on September 27, 2016 at 8:34 am

What happens if she has a medical emergency? Is the election basically over? She had to cancel two appearances this week.

tommy helms on September 26, 2016 at 7:24 pm

And one very positive thing about the debate — it will take viewers away from the football game of the disgusting NFL league. Hopefully NFL sponsors will decrease their payments to the NFL. It is hard for me to understand why any pro-American person would be a fan of the NBA or the NFL.

Little Al on September 26, 2016 at 8:00 pm

    @ LITTLE AL :

    Self-loathing white people have to enthusiastically cheer for the NBA and the NFL to try and convince themselves and others that they aren’t really racially prejudiced.

    As for me, I love football, but ONLY if I’m on the field playing informal, no rules, sandlot, full contact, tackle football, which I can’t do anymore because of my old age and declining physical health.

    I don’t like basketball at all, because I can’t keep up with what’s going on.

    Yes, both college and professional sports in America has become all about race (which no one dares mention), politics, and money, with teams which do not represent the communities whose names they flaunt.

    John Robert Mallernee on September 26, 2016 at 8:27 pm

Here’s my take on the debate tonight. Trump will bring his A game and it will be easy because the Hillary Support Team aka the media thinks that he will get beat by the PIAPS. He will do ok if he stays on script, stays calm and not fall into her trap. Illery will use every trick in the book in her well scripted playbook to trip him up. She already is trying that by using that moron Mark Cuban in the front row. He who has said many stupid things about race relations among other things. He is used to being on stage since he’s over 6 feet tall can command it. Godzillery being the short stumpy reptile that she is can’t really run on the past 8 years of the failed Obamanation. She also can really run on her 4 years as our top diplomat. She will lie, obfuscate, parse words and try to seem like the smartest person in room. The trouble with that is the more you hear The Benghazi Butcher speak the less you like her. She will have to keep the shrillness down and I don’t think she can do that in 90 minutes. Speaking of that there are no breaks so her team better make sure that she’s medicated up until passed midnight and that she’s got plenty of water. As for Lester Holt. He’s only a little bit more exciting than Matt Lauer and that’s not saying much. Despite recent whining by the Hilbots campaign and his fellow media cohorts I think that he won’t pull a Candy Crowley. He likes his cushy NBC teleprompter reading job on the weeknights. That and If he tries that Trump may make him look like a moron. Unlike Mittens who couldn’t recover. It won’t be long now folks. I’ve got my water and popcorn so let the games begin.

Ken B on September 26, 2016 at 8:52 pm

JRM, I believe that in this debate, Trump will give her a pass, and not be credited for looking ‘presidential’. Then in the next 2 debates, he’ll flog her, when he sees that he gets no credit for good manners

Infidel on September 26, 2016 at 8:59 pm

JRM, I’m not faulting the actual sports of football & basketball, just the NFL and the NBA for the reasons that you stated.

Little Al on September 26, 2016 at 9:27 pm

It wasn’t horrible. I think Donald could explain the birther issue about WHY and take away the racial element out of it. Blame it on the rumor of him being an International Exchange Student for Harvard. Wasn’t that the rumor. Blame it on that. Also Blame the media for not making it clear that if his mother was a citisen, the he could have been born underwater in the lost city of Atlantis and his election would be fine. Its the reason he backed of cruise. Their people don’t think arguments through completely. He also missed a chance when she brought up racial unfair laws, he should have hit her with the laws her husband made regarding cocaine. Also didnt Clinton privatise prisons. He could have banged her good with those.

MrBigBrain on September 26, 2016 at 10:41 pm

Okay, just watched the debate. Trump held his own, defying the prediction of him being mellow

Infidel on September 26, 2016 at 10:42 pm

How was the ‘birther question’ a legit question about issues?

Infidel on September 26, 2016 at 10:42 pm

Absolutely incredible. The moderator, Lester Holt was asking Trump gotcha questions all night, which he answered effectively.

So the media uniformly criticized Trump for being ‘defensive’. You attack someone, he answers, and then, regardless of the answer, is criticized for being ‘defensive’.

It was a sign of Trump’s mastery of the debate format that the criticism of him was for being ‘defensive’, rather than being ‘wrong’.

Little Al on September 26, 2016 at 10:55 pm

Trump was provoked by the NBC News Democratic hack. I wish that Trey Gowdy and the Republican Congress would indict Hillary now for all of her Federal Crimes and send her to jail.

Confederate on September 26, 2016 at 11:00 pm

I just watched the debate, and was ASTOUNDED that The Donald actually found a way to bring up the subject of the thirty-three thousand missing e-mails (to spontaneous cheering applause from the audience).

In regards to that topic, it was unfortunate that no mention was made of the violations of federal laws when mishandling classified Top Secret material, which has severe penalties, including lengthy prison sentences.

When discussing the economy, Hillary sounded like a Communist.

When discussing firearms, Hillary sounded like a Nazi.

When discussing race, The Donald SHOULD have strongly objected to the hijacked Marxist inspired term, “African American”, as many GENUINE African Americans are white refugees fleeing racial genocide, who have become good American citizens whom nobody ever hears about since they don’t break laws and make the news.

As MR BIG BRAIN also commented, The Donald should have addressed the birther issue by raising the question of Barry Soetoro being an Indonesian foreign exchange student, along with the fact that he never applied for US citizenship after returning from Indonesia, where he was a citizen and a Muslim.

I wonder why neither candidate ever referred to the Declaration of Independence and/or the Constitution of the United States of America, not even once?

In the final analysis, I’m reminded of what a German said about life in Germany following the Treaty of Versailles, when he frankly stated that the only choices that German voters had was either the Communists or the Nazis, and after seeing what happened in Russia, German voters were terrified of Communism.

I think much the same thing is happening right now to us.

We’ve seen what Obama and Hillary have done, and we’re ready to vote for ANY alternative, no matter what.

I’m not saying The Donald is a Nazi, merely commenting on our society’s current psychological condition, which approaches unreasoning panic.

Actually, there are already numerous uncanny parallels between the Third Reich in 1938, and our current American society, such as preferential treatment based on race, racial quotas, government mandated politically correct speech, a controlled news media, public schools used for indoctrination and social conditioning, Hollywood employed as a propaganda machine, endorsing sexual perversion (many Nazis were homosexual), forcing everyone to submit to searches when traveling, government control of private enterprise, and worst of all, using abortion and euthanasia to decide whose life is worth living, and who should die.

Our police S.W.A.T. teams have even adopted the black uniforms of the SS, our interstate freeway system is a copy of the German autobahn, our Armed Forces have adopted the “Fritz” helmet, and our M-60 machine gun is a copy of the Wehrmacht M-42 machine gun.

John Robert Mallernee on September 26, 2016 at 11:42 pm

    She also looked like a communist wearing red; was that a non verbal shout out?

    SSgt Preston, USMC on September 27, 2016 at 7:51 am

I managed to watch the debate last night but I was mad because I ran out of popcorn. Trump proved to be the street fighter that we knew that he was. Unlike the milquetoast ex-governor of Massachusetts who won the first debate but took his foot off the gas and got screw by the fat ex-CNN cow. Trump was able to deal with Holt asking his gotcha questions like the birther issue and he managed to bring up her missing emails. You could tell that the screeching harpy didn’t like that he did that. Illary’s economic plan will do nothing but screw the middle class and won’t create jobs. She made me shake my head when she talked about alternative energy but yet she said that she would put coal companies out of business. Just like her former boss Obola. She talked about how Trump can’t be a champion for women’s rights when he degraded them by calling names. Well boo freaking hoo. Her foundation/slush fund(which Lester Dolt didn’t bring up-at all) has taken millions from countries that treat women worse than they treat their camels. Countries like Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and the UAE. To say nothing of the fact that her husband did what he did with women and she enabled him. Trump later said that he wouldn’t go there but he should’ve. In a tactful way of course but the point should’ve been made. Trump kept doing that sniffing thing (allergies to the PIAPS maybe) and Hillary kept bobbing her head with that robotic fake smile. He took drinks of water throughout and she didn’t. Maybe because of the no breaks rule or the meds that she obviously took. It was great TV and it just solidified who I’m voting for. Unlike in 92, 96, 08 and 12 we have a candidate who isn’t afraid to take on the democrat candidate or a hack moderator. He’ll have to because it will be two against one for the next debates. Did anyone catch Me-again Kelly getting upset that Trump spoke to Vannity first and not the “journalists.” What a diva putz. That and the fact she had that buffoon Mark Cuban on. That guy might be filthy rich but he’s still a moron.

Ken B on September 27, 2016 at 8:25 am

Theoretically , Trumps loss of the debate will not change anything ( particularly if you just can’t bear the thought of Hillary eventually winning.) it’s the 2nd one that will determine it one way or another. Otherwise, Trump was clearly nervous, and that hindered him. She, with all her see through BS, was as loose as as Trumps double chin!

Howard on September 27, 2016 at 9:16 am

I watched the debate last night. Lester Holt is a typical Demonrat. When asked about the birther question, Mr. Trump should have answered that he was taking Obama at his word from Obama’s self-promotional pamphlet he had printed originally around 1991 and reprinted through at least 2003. In the pamphlet, he claimed to have been born in Kenya. Donald missed a great opportunity when the topic of cyber security came up. He should have slammed Hillary about her personal server, she probably was hacked, the missing 33K emails, and that she deleted those emails against federal law.

With regard to the more important topic, Godzilla vs. King Kong, here’s my understanding. In the movie released to the Japanese audience, Godzilla wins the fight with King Kong. In the movie released to the American audience, King Kong gets extra power from electricity and defeats but does not kill Godzilla. Both go on to rampage in the future.

Concerned Citizen on September 27, 2016 at 11:10 am

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