Clinton won but Trump still in the running

Hillary Clinton cut a better figure than her Republican rival Donald Trump in the first TV debate between the two candidates, according to the polls. Some commentators say Trump has once again shown that he is unfit for the White House. Others believe that with his concise statements he made a good impression.

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The New York Times (US) /

Clinton's effective criticism

Trump showed in the duel that he was unfit to be president, the New York Times concludes:

“He ranted more than he reasoned. He repeated untruths, and he repeated himself over and over. His core supporters won’t care, of course, but the undecided voters who will decide the election might. Clinton, for her part, came across as a steady hand, at once patient and resolute. She picked Trump apart on his failure to disclose his tax return, turning on him when he lamented the state of American airports, roads, bridges and tunnels. … . She pilloried his treatment of women to great effect, and led the prickly Trump into a rabbit-hole of tired allegations as she held his long embrace of lies about President Obama’s place of birth up for deserved ridicule. Trump, when he gets defensive, is a bore. This was amply illustrated under Clinton’s fire.”

24 Chasa (BG) /

Trump didn't do that bad at all

The Republican presidential candidate fared far better in the TV duel with Clinton than the polls suggest, 24 Chasa believes:

“Hillary Clinton made a more professional impression than Donald Trump. But Trump's weapon of speaking like a non-politician gave him plus points among those who have had enough of the political elite. Trump did a good job of putting across his position, regardless of what you might think of it: short and sweet, literally in three or four words, summed up and repeated in catchy phrases. Both candidates catered to their own supporters in the TV debate. As far as the polls published immediately after the debate go, it must be borne in mind that only the viewers of a specific TV channel were asked for their opinions and so the polls can't be considered representative. What's more, without doubt more Clinton supporters watched the debate in the first place.”

Ilta-Sanomat (FI) /

Voters don't care about the facts

A victory in the TV debate doesn't mean a victory in the election, Ilta-Sanomat observes:

“In the first commentaries and analyses Clinton was quickly declared the winner. And in this debate she was no doubt the winner. But the analyses forgot what really counts in this presidential election: the protest. Protest against the powerful, the East Coast elite, the politicians and the whole system that is paralysed by economic problems. A system that has deprived the average American of the possibility of living the American dream. In this game facts don't count. It's about feelings, about the drumbeat personified by Donald Trump - whether we like it or not. A large section of the white American electorate would send Trump to the White House regardless of the consequences. … So despite his muddling of facts and strange faux pas we can't declare Trump the loser yet.”

La Vanguardia (ES) /

Trump vulnerable but not beaten

Remarkably, Trump has survived the debate, La Vanguardia comments:

“In the first TV face-off of the US presidential election campaign Hillary Clinton made the most of her unquestionably superior intellect and political experience to triumph over Donald Trump, according to most of the polls. The bad news for the Democratic candidate is that despite this being a format that fits her perfectly she didn't manage to torpedo a rival who, in theory, is so very vulnerable and un-presidential. So the outcome of the election on November 8 remains up in the air.”

Financial Times (GB) /

Neither has a clue about the economy

Both candidates were wrong on economic policy, The Financial Times writes annoyed:

“Both Mr Trump and Mrs Clinton pander to the idea that comfortable mid-20th century factory-floor jobs can simply be willed back into existence. It is a myth. The blame for America’s labour force woes and the increasingly skewed distribution of the fruits of growth are to be found at home. It is Washington, not Beijing, which sets US tax rates. The answer to most of America’s challenges are to be found in the booming cities and technological hubs of 21st century America. Blaming it on foreigners may be good tactics. But it could result in terrible policies that will only deepen the malaise.”

Cumhuriyet (TR) /

Clinton's scary foreign policy agenda

Cumhuriyet takes a look at the presidential candidates' foreign policy agenda and worries that Clinton will fight ruthlessly for the US to rule the world:

“Clinton is a character who will do what she has always done. Her agenda is clear: she will continue her expensive liberal interventionism project according to the 'spreading democracy, building the nation' slogan which has never achieved even a scarp of prosperity anywhere but instead only brought destruction. To ensure that the US retains its dominance against Russia and China Clinton will do everything to guarantee the continuation of the structurally flawed financial system. One of her priorities is a change of regime in Syria. Setting up a no-fly zone would mean increasing the US military presence. We don't know if it would come to an open war with Clinton in office, but events like the invasion of Iraq in 2003 couldn't be ruled out.”

Svenska Dagbladet (SE) /

An election campaign that defies tradition

The fact that Trump has been able to make it this far in the race for the White House shows that the world of politics is badly out of whack, Svenska Dagbladet believes:

“Looked at from a traditional point of view, Clinton was the clear winner of the debate. ... But this year's presidential elections have nothing to do with tradition. For everyone who saw the TV duel, Trump's candidacy is clearly nothing but a revolt against the establishment. ... Clinton came across as more mature, more responsible, more knowledgeable, more experienced and more rhetorically skilled than her rival. Nevertheless the event is not being seen as a particularly big victory for Clinton. A victory, yes, but no landslide. That in itself is outrageous. In view of the Trump phenomenon we must ask: how great has the Americans' hatred of the political class become?”

De Morgen (BE) /

The divided States of America

After the first TV debate De Morgen feels reminded of Europe:

“The fierce debate conveyed above all the image of a divided United States. All of a sudden the US seems, well, European. On the one hand the establishment's favourite with a middle course which is unusually tilted to the left for American standards. … But Donald Trump also came across as very European in the role of the right-wing populist anti-establishment challenger, sucking up all the socio-economic discontent and cultural unease among the different classes with promises that go in all directions. … Of these two polarizing and imperfect candidates Hillary Clinton is most suited to become commander-in-chief.”

More opinions

Der Tagesspiegel (DE) / 28 September 2016
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