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Debate Prediction Entertainment 2 of 2

September 17, 2015

Here are my thoughts after the debate, with little time to reflect. Turns out I got to watch the first half, and later I read excerpts from the second.

To my prediction, that Trump will continue to lead in the polls: I still think that the point of this debate was to take down T, and I never saw him on the mat. I didn’t see, hear, or read anything that I think would cause him to lose favor with his fans, who are legion. He played to his strengths in the eyes of those voters, and he avoided looking like a clown. So I still think he will lead in the aftermath polling. But maybe not as large a lead, because other candidates were sufficiently impressive, from a Rep point of view, to draw more votes than earlier.

However, I think the shallowness of T’s claim to superior competence was exposed. And I think his misogyny is a stake looking for a heart. Fiorina exposed that quite well, and the audience certainly got it. And they saw that T seriously did not get it. T had said that Jeb’s statement about our not needing 500B for women’s health would doom him! The Dem ticket will have a woman on it, and the time has come when a very large number of Dem women will turn out to vote for a woman (augmented by a serious number of “independent” and even Rep women who will vote for a Dem woman whom they can admire). I’m thinking that, as more Rep voters start paying attention, they’re going to realize that T is, therefore, unelectable, and not pick him in the polls. (I take it, however, that many women among his current supporters agree that God intends for men to rule, and that women are rendered inferior by their emotionality.)

It seemed to me that Jeb continued to look weak, not quite really up to the task (maybe he looked stronger in the second half). I thought that Walker looked like he might come alive again (I agree with someone who said that he is still learning how to campaign on a national stage). [Oops.  Walker out, just four days later.  What are the Koch’s thinking now?  (Recently learned that T’s campaign manager has Koch ties.)]

In addition, it seemed clear that a tactic for competing with T was to appeal to his supporters, and several candidates saw the issue of abortion as the opportunity to do so, even to the point of blatantly lying—especially Fiorina and Huckabee.

Another thought: Rep candidates should criticize Obama, but they shouldn’t lie to do it. The thing that bothers me about they’re blaming Obama for everything, including things that don’t exist, is that I so often meet conservatives who diagnose our problems in the same way as I do, and then blame it all on Obama, with no awareness of the obstruction and destruction on the part of the Reps in Congress. They simply assume that if there’s a problem it was caused by something that O did or did not do. Simplistic thinking, at best.

Finally: I do think that some of these characters are incredibly wrong-headed, on just about everything; but I also think that a few of them think better and know more than they are ever able to act upon, within the constraints of conservative politics. Some of them would be disastrous in the presidency, and I didn’t see anybody that I thought could make the kind of president that we desperately need.

[Now i’m hoping to find time soon to watch the entire 3 hours and address the Republican imagination, in image and story.]

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