This election has been exhausting for one reason alone. We cannot endure another Obama administration run by Hillary. A calculated criminal in the White House isn’t on my menu or yours. But Donald needs to pick his battles selectively and not capitulate to Hillary like he did last week in his first debate. He took the bait unable to pass up her lethal and seductive ploys. She fires her bullets that Trump can’t dodge; he fires back unable to discern which battles to pick. Hillary knows Trump can’t abstain.
He is now ensconced in a beauty queen altercation that none of us care about. Let’s talk economy or Muslims or border-security or the threat of nuclear weapons. Or let’s delve into how untrustworthy Hillary is. Do Alicia Machado’s weight issues have any significance in this election? Machado was one of Hillary’s shakedown debate picks. Why is Trump still trying to discredit her. He looks weak doing it. This is deception dredged up by Hillary that Trump doesn’t resist, but should. Apparently he likes the fight while frustrating his handlers who cannot control their candidate when they need to.
This might be the time for Donald to listen.
He’s running out of time.
Undecided voters are still undecided, some of them. They wonder which candidate to pick? Do I go with the unhealthy but reliably untrustworthy female who will continue Obama’s destructive policies or pick the man with the right ideas who can surround himself with smart people but who seems unhinged at times, unable to skirt provocations that should be ignored? They might ask if Trump will be able to deliver consistently as president? With critical reasoning you’d be inclined to pick the man, but if you’re a woman who is overweight, or preoccupied with sexism, or a woman whose husband has anger-management issues, you might pick the female candidate.
Women comprise 50.8 percent of the total population and should be one of Trump’s top priorities. He should be pandering to women’s needs for national security, a stronger economy and child care, and he has, but he must be consistent because Hillary’s provocations to smear him as a misogynist are calculated. Her attacks can have their intended impact if Trump doesn’t start using better judgment.
The debate results are mixed at best. A CNN/ORC debate poll tells us that 65% of women thought Hillary performed better in the debate, while 59% of men believed the same. Others claimed Trump won based on his ability to stick with issues that matter to Americans. Some thought it was a draw. Hillary’s focus was ridicule and taunts. Yet she stayed on message and presented well with an unseemly arrogance she could not hide. She’s so unlikable, eliciting cringe-inducing, off-putting emotions every time she opens her mouth. Trump seemed to unravel after his first 30 minutes, unable to effectively counter her attacks. He seemed unprepared and defensive. That isn’t presidential.
Was he protecting Hillary so as not to appear sexist or harsh. It didn’t work. She’s a vixen who thumped him good. Trump needs to get back to being Trump. The two thirds of Americans who believe her to be untrustworthy won’t mind a bit. They’ll cheer!
Trump will have to perform during the next two debates. The first debate left Hillary looking more in control though there are questions about her obvious cozy deal with biased Lester Holt who fed her softball questions while deriding Trump. It was unfair but nonetheless still left an impression. Despite all this, this is a change election. Hillary provides a no-change agenda because Obama’s views are hers. And we’re discovering more sordid Clinton developments: James Comey and his brother, Peter Comey, have deep ties with the Clinton Foundation. So much for the credibility of the FBI. Comey was bought and sold. There’s so much sinful Clinton wrongdoing that Trump can pick and choose. If he remains relegated to the dirt Hillary hand picks, he won’t be able to make his case.
Things feels Romney-like in some ways. Romney had many reasons to win in 2012 yet could not tie together the ammunition to make his case. Obama prevailed because he was smooth and glib, confident even when unlawfully embroiled in un-presidential wrongdoing. It hardly mattered. Romney like Trump was subject to character assassination that worked because Romney fatally chose to ignore it. Trump does the opposite. He gets embroiled in Hillary’s attacks. He should stick with the issues that matter. Hillary will attempt to lure him again in the next two debates. Her success will depend on Trump’s ability to rise above it.
Hillary is using the Obama playbook that worked in 2012. She has no accomplishments or originality. Degradation and petty entrapments are all she’s got. That’s to Trump’s advantage.
To be sure, Trump has more going for him than Mitt Romney but looking back provides insight going forward.
We are watching another rehashed replay of a foul game that worked effectively for Obama. Hillary lacks the charm. Still, presidential candidates, even when they have more ability and integrity, will lose when they are unable to remain focused on their message convincingly. Trump must keep his eye on the ball. He tends to repeat the same mistakes and Hillary knows how to provoke them.
The remainder of this tawdry election will play out with some surprises. We cannot presume to know the outcome. Trump rallies when he’s down and does it compellingly. Let’s hope he figures this out and delivers.
Our country hangs in the balance.