Clinton vs Trump: shots fired at first US debate

Republican candidate Donald Trump
And polls indicate Clinton comes out fighting fit

By Charlotte Gehrke

And polls indicate Clinton comes out fighting fit

On September 26, 1960 John F. Kennedy and Richard Nixon engaged in the first televised presidential debate of the United States of America. This year, on its anniversary, Donald J. Trump and Hillary Rodham Clinton followed in the tradition of presidential candidates discussing issues concerning Americans nationwide.

The ninety-minute debate took place at Hofstra University in Hempstead, New York and was hosted by NBC News anchor Lester Holt with around 84 million viewers watching the discussion at home, according to the research firm nielson.

The three presidential debates signify the candidates’ last chances to win undecided votes before the presidential election on November 8, 2016.

Lester Holt led the candidates in a heated discussion focusing largely on three predetermined topics: Achieving prosperity, America’s direction, and securing the United States.

Whilst former first lady and sixty-seventh secretary of state, Hilary Clinton argued that businessman Donald Trump’s tax plan would only profit the wealthy, Trump insisted that Clinton was not hard enough on crime.

Trump’s strategy quickly became apparent as he relied on provoking Clinton, whilst Clinton undermined Trump with her well considered policies and has vast knowledge in historical politics.

Both Holt and Clinton challenged Donald Trump on his controversial statements, such as Trump’s initial support of the Iraq War, the refusal to publish his tax-returns and his insistence on the Birther Lie (referring to the claim that President Barak Obama was not born in the United States; Obama has since refuted this by presenting his long-form birth certificate in 2011).

Junior US Senator, Bernie Sanders, has since tweeted saying: “I believe in Americans who care about our country, our kids and our veterans understand what we must pay our taxes – even the billionaires.”.

The UK and many countries across Europe appear to be in support for Hilary Clinton to be named the next US president, in which case history would be made as the US would witness their first female president.

In her closing statement, Clinton addressed the importance of America’s international partners in trade and assured a safe future of their collaboration with the US if she were to become president.

“I intend to be a leader of our country that people can count on, both here at home and around the world. To make decisions that will further peace and prosperity. But also to stand up to bullies, whether they are abroad or at home.

“We cannot let those who would try to destabalize the world interfere with American interests and security.”

On the otherside, Trump closed the debate with a repetition of his infamous slogan.

“I want to make America great again, I’m able to do it. I don’t believe Hilary will. The answer is if she wins I will absolutely support her.”

The general consensus regarding the winner of the first US presidential debate was on Clinton. CNN polls of polls suggested 44% of US citizens would vote for Clinton, whilst 42% would vote for Trump. Libertarian candidate Gary Johnson holds 8% of the votes and Green Party candidate Jill Stein has just 2%.

The impact of the debate is also reflected in the New York Times election forecase, which currently predicts that Clinton has an 81% chance of winning, having steadily risen since the broadcast of the first presidential debate; Trumps chances, however, are suggested to have decreased.

This was the first of three presidential debates. The second one is scheduled for October 9 and the third one for October 19.

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