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COMMENTARY: “Woulda Coulda Shoulda” Trump’s Lackluster Debate Performance

For many months we’ve heard and read politicians, so-called journalists and pundits alike espouse their belief that Donald J. Trump is not really a Republican. They question his commitment to Conservative ideals at every turn, perhaps uncomfortable with the prospect of a President who does not tow the party line, perhaps concerned that a true political outsider will dismantle the feeding trough of the American trust which has enabled them to become fat and comfortable. But they forget the core principles the Republican Party were founded on and fail to recognize them in Trump’s speeches, interviews, policy papers and Tweets. For those who still doubt that he is really a Republican, they would do well to keep in mind that his lackluster performance in the first Presidential Debate, which was at least a draw, demonstrated the more important core Republican trait: the ability to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory… kind of.

Trump had only two tasks to accomplish in the debate (aside from just showing up and acting “normal”… something he often struggles with):

1. to demonstrate that he is Presidential material by showing his personal history is an asset our country needs
2. to show that Hillary Clinton’s personal history is a liability which disqualifies her for the Presidency

Unfortunately, for those of us committed to reclaiming our Republic from the insanity of the current incompetent, politically correct administration, Trump’s performance was like a dilapidated Model T, struggling in fits and starts between bumbles to traverse a simple inclined stretch of road that was Hillary Clinton on her step stool. It is true that he had moments of intelligibility and even a few instances of effective poignancy. For the most part though, he missed opportunity after opportunity to accomplish his objectives.

For example, when she claimed that he is a racist because of the discriminatory policies of the buildings he inherited from his father, he could have easily pointed out that he was unaware of what the housing contracts said but fixed them as soon as he learned of their content. Instead though, he shot himself in the foot by saying that hundreds of other corporations were sued at the same time by the Justice Department and that he got out of it without admission of guilt. The last thing Americans want to hear is that both of their Presidential choices know how to navigate the legal industry with ease, effectively making them immune to charges that would destroy any of the rest of us.

When the topic of cyber security came up, Trump failed to mention that security must begin with government employees following the law themselves to secure their communications.  Hillary stood there, the largest target in debate history, having lost all authority to speak about the issue the moment she set up her private email server. And Trump missed it. Lost was the opportunity to tell undecided voters that President Obama had a code name in emails to her and knew about her unsecure practices from the beginning, demonstrating the entire administration has been mishandling classified information.

When asked about the War on Terror, Trump did better. He correctly pointed out that Hillary was complicit in creating ISIS through the vacuum her failed Middle East policies created, but he did not even mention the four Americans intentionally slaughtered in Benghazi, including our Ambassador, and Hillary’s ignoring over 600 official requests for additional security there.

While we are told that Trump cannot be expected to know policy details as well as a past Senator and Secretary of State (Forgive me for expecting a Presidential Candidate to know such things!), it is not unreasonable to expect him to know and use, in his defense, his own history?

Trump certainly did not lose the debate. At best it was a draw that will make little difference in the uninformed minds of undecided voters. But for those of us who know well that the very future of our Republic is at stake, he appeared oblivious to the smorgasbord of opportunities offered on a silver platter.

Is it possible that Trump’s performance was part of a greater strategy and that he will pull out some of the big guns in the next debate? Yes. We know that he has spent very little money so far and plans to begin using the $200,000,000 in his coffers six weeks before the election, so it is possible that his lackluster performance was intentionally subdued.

Is it possible that he will learn from his experience in this debate and do far better next time? Yes, it is. After all, you don’t get to the position of his financial success without being a quick study. Hopefully Trump will demonstrate another critical quality in successful Presidents: the ability to learn from their mistakes.


Matt Fitzgibbons

Matt Fitzgibbons is founder of PatriotMusic.com, he is a multi-talented musician, historian, philosopher and 2016 political analyst.

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