LIVEBLOGGING THE DEBATE: Trump v. Hillary, Round 1



Holt asks Trump what he meant by not having the presidential look about Hillary. Trump says she needs more stamina.

Hillary says “after he travels to 112 countries and negotiates a ceasefire, a release of dissidents, an opening of new opportunities in nations around the world, or even spends 11 hours testifying in front of a Congressional committee, he can talk about stamina.” Trump says Hillary has experience, but it’s bad experience. Cheers for both.

Hillary says Trump tried to switch from looks to stamina. He says he has called women pigs and dogs, and said pregnancy is an inconvenience to employers, and she rips his addiction to beauty contests. She cites a Hispanic woman Trump supposedly called a housekeeper.

Trump cites Rosie O’Donnell and rips her. He says he wouldn’t mention her family, skips the Clinton hit. He says she’s being mean.

Hillary says she’ll support the outcome of this election, and that Trump is planting doubts about the election. Trump says he wants to make America great again. He says if Hillary wins, he’ll absolutely support her.


Holt asks about how to stop homegrown terrorism.

Trump immediately says that Hillary is talking about taking out ISIS. But Hillary and Obama created a vacuum the way they got out of Iraq. They shouldn’t have been in, but they got out in disastrous fashion. She talks about taking them out, but they wouldn’t have been formed if they left some troops behind in Iraq. Trump says we should have “taken the oil.” Again, he has no idea what he’s saying about this. He calls Libya another one of Trump’s disasters.

Trump should have gone with immigration there. He didn’t. Missed opportunity.

Hillary calls on the fact-checkers. She says Trump supported the invasion. He advocated for Libyan invasion. That’s true. She says that it was Bush’s fault that we got out early. This is eminently false.

Hillary says we’re working with NATO and Muslim allies to fight terrorism. She says Trump has insulted Muslims abroad and at home.

Trump says we have an enormous mess under Hillary’s direction. He says the Iran deal is “another beauty” and says they’ll be a major power thanks to Hillary. True. Trump now moves to defend on NATO comments — another giant fail. Why isn’t he on attack?

Holt says Trump didn’t support the Iraq war. Trump says the media’s lying about him. Holt says the record shows otherwise. Hillary grinning like a ghoul while Trump talks about how he’s besties with Sean Hannity who fought with him over the Iraq war.

Trump says his strongest asset is his temperament. Hillary is almost laughing out loud now. Trump says Hillary was totally out of control when she addressed the unions.

Hillary says, “Well, okay.” The audience laughs. Brutal.

She ignores the meltdown, talks about NATO. Then she brags about the Iran deal. She says Trump would have blown the Iranians out of the water for seizing American sailors. He says that wouldn’t start a war, and he’s totally right.

She rips him over his policy on nuclear proliferation. She says he can’t handle twitter let alone nukes.

Trump says it’s an old line. She says it’s a good line.

Trump says other countries should pay us. “We lose on everything.” He says if these other countries don’t pay their fair share — Japan can’t be defended by us. They may have to defend themselves. “As far as the nuclear is concerned, it is the single greatest threat.”

Trump says that Hillary is cavalier about how she talks about Russia. He says that Russia is upgrading capacity. He says we’re not keeping up. He says we should get rid of nuclear weapons, but says he can’t take anything off the table. He says China should solve North Korea. He says the worst deal is the Iran deal — he says Iran has power over North Korea. He mentions Yemen. Now he’s babbling.

Hillary says words matter when you run for president. She says we have mutual defense treaties and we will honor them. It is essential that America’s word be good. He says many countries question our commitment, but she wants to speak on behalf of the American people that our word is good. She adds, “It’s important that we look at the entire global situation. There’s no doubt we have other problems with Iran, but I’d rather deal with those other problems having put that lid on.”

Trump says Hillary can’t defeat ISIS. He says he wants to help our allies, but we are losing money. “We cannot be the policeman of the world…they’re not paying us what we need.” Wow.


Holt asks Trump about birtherism. Trump mentions Sidney Blumenthal and Patty Doyle’s connections to birtherism. Trump says he wants to get on to defeating ISIS, he wants to get on to a strong border. Holt repeats the question: why didn’t he stop his birtherism after 2011? Trump says nobody was pressing it or caring much about it, but he got Obama to produce the birth certificate. Trump says he won’t apologize for pushing birtherism. Trump says he’s developed great relationships with the African-American community. He says he came to the anti-birther conclusion because blacks wanted him to do so.

Hillary says, “Just listen to what you heard.” Hillary says Trump knew the question was coming, so he tried to put the racist birther lie to bed. She says it can’t be dismissed that easily. She says Trump started his political activity based on this racist lie. She then goes back to 1973 and pushes the lawsuits on racial discrimination. She quotes Michelle Obama at the DNC saying “when they go low, we go high, and Barack Obama went high.”

Trump defends his business record again. He’s spent far more time defending himself than she has. That’s a flip from early in the debate.

Holt asks about cyberattacks.

Hillary says that cyberwarfare will be a big challenge. Hillary immediately cites Russian cyberattacks. Hillary says Trump is very warm toward Putin. She says Putin’s playing a tough, long game. She says cyberattackers will be hacking into personal files, and we’ve learned that this is one of their preferred methods. She once again points out Trump’s comments about Putin hacking Americans.

Trump says he was endorsed by 200 admirals and generals to lead the country. Trump says he was also endorsed by ICE. He says he’ll take the admirals and the generals over the political hacks who have led our country so brilliantly. He agrees with some of what Hillary says. Trump says it might not have been Russia that hacked the DNC. He said it could be somebody sitting on their bed who weighs 400 lbs. What is he doing? Trump says his son is great with computers — “the security aspect of cyber is very tough…but we are not doing the job we should be doing.”

Hillary talks about defeating ISIS online. She says she helped take out Bin Laden.


Hillary says that Trump keeps talking down the black community. She says there are good ways of doing it. She says stop and frisk was found to be unconstitutional, because it was ineffective. Hillary says crime declined, but too many Hispanic and black people ended up in jail for non-violent offenses. She’s stuttering her way through an answer on gun control.

Holt asks Hillary if police are implicitly biased. She says everyone is implicitly biased. She says we jump to conclusions about each other. We need to ask hard questions about “why am I feeling this way?” She says she wants funding for retraining on implicit bias.

Trump disowns the NRA and says no-fly, no-buy on guns. Well done, guys.

Trump says Hillary probably believes in stop-and-frisk. Hillary says if we’re going to talk about mayor, murders have dropped in New York City. Trump says she’s wrong. He’s correct.

Trump says the community in the inner cities has been abused in order to get votes among Democrats. Trump says he just left Detroit and Philadelphia — Hillary decided to stay home, and that’s okay — he says they’re upset with what their politicians have told them and what they’ve done. Hillary says Trump criticized her for preparing for the debate, and she prepared to be president.


Hillary attacks his business record. She talks about dishwashers, painters, architects who have been victimized by Trump. She says he chiseled people; he collapses and says he didn’t pay people with whose work he wasn’t satisfied. She says he’s taken business bankruptcy six times. She says he calls himself the king of debt, says that Trump would try to negotiate down the national debt of the United States. She says sometimes there’s not a direct transfer of skills from business to government, sometimes it’s a bad transfer.

Trump: it’s all words, it’s all sound bites, I built a great company. He says he’s opening a hotel near the White House — if he doesn’t get there one way, he’ll get there another. He’s saying he can run the country the same way he ran his business.

Holt moves onto race.

Holt asks how to heal the racial divide. Hillary says that race remains a significant challenge in the country. She says race still determines too much. It determines where people live and what kind of education they can get and it determines how they’re treated in the criminal justice system. She says police officers want reform, too — but doesn’t say what kind of reform she wants. She talks about the gun epidemic.

Trump says that Hillary doesn’t want to use a couple of words: law and order. We need law and order — if we don’t have it, we won’t have a country. He says when he looks what’s happening in Charlotte, when he looks throughout the country. He says he received the endorsement of the Fraternal Order of Police, from other police groups. Trump says many blacks are living in Hell. He says Chicago looks like a war-torn country. He says we have to stop the violence, bring back law and order. Trump also calls for gun control in major cities, and then links the issue to illegal immigration. He says the police are afraid to do anything — we must protect our inner cities, because African-American communities are being decimated by crime. Trump says felons shouldn’t have guns.

Trump says he agrees with Clinton that we need a better relationship between police and the community. He says bad things are happening, and we need law and order. Again.


Holt asks Trump about tax returns. Trump blames the audit. Holt fact-checks him. Trump keeps repeating his talking point. He then says that Hillary should have released her emails. He asks why she deleted 33,000 emails.

Hillary says it’s an example of bait-and-switch. Everybody releases tax returns. She says he’s not as rich as he says he is, or not as charitable. He says we don’t know all of his business dealings.

He says it makes him smart not to pay taxes.

She continues that Trump isn’t enthusiastic about people seeing what’s in the tax returns. He says the financial disclosure statements don’t give all the details. He says it seems to her that Americans deserve to see it. Hillary says Trump is hiding something. Which is undoubtedly true. She asks who Trump owes money to.

Hillary says she made a mistake using a private email. She says it’s a mistake and she takes responsibility.

Trump says her emails were done purposefully. He says when your staff takes the Fifth Amendment, when you have the man who set up the server taking the Fifth — that’s disgraceful. Then he babbles about his business record. Trump says he’ll hand over a list of banks that have lent him money.

Trump says it would be one thing if we were indebted if we had good infrastructure, but we’re a mess. Trump says we’re a debtor nation and we need new roads, tunnels, hospitals — it’s been squandered on her ideas. She says he should have paid his income tax, then.


Hillary’s playing Trump’s game now, whining about trade, too. She says she’ll appoint a special prosecutor on trade. Trump slams NAFTA. Trade is the worst thing that ever happened — according to both candidates. But she appears to be getting under his skin, even as he gets aggressive. She says she was in favor of TPP, but now she’s not. Weak.

Hillary looks wishy-washy. Trump says Hillary will approve one of the biggest tax increases in history. He says her regulations are a disaster, and he defends his tax cut as the biggest since Reagan. He says Hillary will regulate businesses out of existence — and then turns and addresses Lester Holt and says people like his regulatory cuts. He says he’ll cut taxes, and she’ll raise them.

Hillary says she assumes there would be charges and claims — Trump says, “facts” — and Hillary says her website is a fact-checking website. Hillary says she’d tax the wealthy and corporations. Trump says her website has all her answers — would MacArthur like that? Suddenly Trump is attacking her on her inability to fight ISIS, and he says she’s been fighting ISIS her entire adult life.

Trump returns to the theme of taxes being too high. He says we have no leadership on the economy, and it begins with Hillary Clinton. Hillary says she’ll be blamed for everything, and Trump says, “Why not?” Hillary accuses Trump of saying “crazy things.” Trump says there’s nothing crazy about bringing companies back to our country.

Hillary again returns to “Trumped-up trickle-down.” Fail. Utter failure. Total and utter failure. Failure of failures. She is SO bad at this.

Trump says Hillary is all-talk, no action. He says she’s made bad decisions. He says we’ve had the worst revival of an economy since the Great Depression, and he says we’re in a bubble. Trump says we’d better be awfully careful, and a Fed doing political things. Trump says the day Obama leaves, they’ll raise interest rates. He says the Fed is more political than Clinton.


Lester Holt, looking pretty happy, jumps in with both feet. He begins by introducing the candidates — it’s just like Trump’s wedding! Hillary’s wearing Communist red, Trump’s looking calm, as though Kellyanne Conway has drugged him heavily.

Holt asks Hillary why she’s a better choice to create jobs. Hillary says the central question in the election is what kind of country we want to be, and what kind of future we want to build. She invokes her granddaughter, because she’s a WOMANZ. She then begins to drone about equal pay and profit sharing. She’s the most boring woman on earth, and she’s showing her chops. She asks who can shoulder the imense responsibilities of the presidency — a knock on Trump’s capacity.

Trump says jobs are fleeing the country, moving to Mexico and China. He complains about devaluing the currency, which of course is sillytalks, but hey, it’s a narrative. He then says that he agrees with Hillary on childcare. He complains some more about free trade. Finally, at the tail end, he says he’s for tax cuts. Nice to hear at least a bit of occasional conservatism.

Hillary says Trump’s plan is Trumped-up trickle-down. My God. She’s horrifying.

She then says that she grew up a poor black child in Alabama. As opposed to Trump, who grew up in the lap of luxury.

Trump hits back on his business record, and then she complains about green energy and Trump’s failure to understand climate change. She also whines about Bush.

Trump strikes back by pointing out the failures of the Obama green economy and his failures in terms of debt. Trump again hits her on why she hasn’t been doing anything about this stuff for thirty years.

Hillary cites her husband’s record.


So it begins.

Will Trump crap himself? Will Hillary keel over? Will Trump vomit on a Mexican baby? Will Hillary eat a live fetus?

Watch here for all the updates.

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