The consensus in the media is that Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton crushed Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump in their third and final debate. Numerous political commentators have offered their analysis of what unfolded on the debate stage in Las Vegas, but one stands out as the most succinct of all.
Dan Rather, the famed broadcaster, took to Facebook to share his thoughts on Trump’s flambeing at the hands of Clinton. In part Rather wrote:
Hillary Clinton has been judged the winner of the first two debates. Tonight, many felt Trump needed a knockout to get back in the race. But I think this was Clinton’s best performance – perhaps by far. I think she wanted this to be a preview of her presidency. Her tone was the most straightforward and direct I have yet seen. She didn’t try to run away from her policy expertise. She embraced it. It was as if she was saying, “I am here. I am smart. I am qualified. I will not be intimidated or silenced. And I am ready to be president.”
In noting Clinton’s low favorabilities amongst the American electorate, Rather pointed out just how foolish it is for a politician to attempt to be well liked. A leader is not someone who one should be thinking of inviting to a barbecue, but instead someone they are comfortable having defend their life and liberty against all enemies foreign of domestic. He continued:
There has been a silly trope floating around the coverage of the Clinton campaign about “likeability”. Many critics have claimed that the very notion is sexist. I agree. Yet tonight, Clinton seemed to throw those worries aside. There were fewer anecdotal flights of storytelling about her interactions with “average families” that you often hear about on the stump. Clinton was steely, determined, forceful. I think this will be the tone of her presidential face, and I think it is one she wears well and naturally.
Rather continued by pointing out how strange it was to see Trump’s chummy comments on Russia, in knowing that Trump and Russian dictator Vladimir Putin have been working with one another this entire campaign:
One big line that I think will play on was in the dust up over Russia. Who would have thought that years after the end of the Cold War the specter of Russia would loom over an American presidential campaign? But there you have it. When the discussion turned to Wikileaks and who was responsible for the hack, Trump, disagreeing with the assessment of the U.S. intelligence agencies, said we don’t know who is behind it. Clinton fired back – He would rather believe Vladimir Putin than the military professionals and intelligence officials. It’s a line you could expect from Ronald Reagan.
In all it appears Rather believes the presidential contest is over, and he is probably right. Trump was humiliated on that debate stage, and let the American people see for a final time how unqualified he is to sit in the Oval Office. It was likely the last time Clinton and Trump will ever be in the same room together, and for that we can all be thankful.
Read Dan Rather’s full post below: