Trump may savour victory even in defeat
by Leonardo N. Molinelli
TORONTO - Did Hillary Clinton really win the debate Wednesday night? Granted, she manifested a much more profound understanding of the specifics of many issues. Something that has eluded Trump. For the umpteenth time she has put on display the work she has accomplished on behalf of the American people over the last thirty years.
Nothing new here. We all know that the fight in November will come down to a decision between a woman who is uber-prepared but often regarded as an antipathetic representative of “the elite”, and a dangerous populist demagogue who is skilled in the manipulation of the Media and in maximizing opportunities to engulf others into his own “reality show”.
As comedian Bill Maher put it a few weeks ago, “such is the disparity between the two in the eyes of the public and the Media that the contest has all of the air of a spelling contest between her and a Chihuahua: if the dog succeeds in not pooping on stage, he will have surpassed all expectations”.
It should not even be a contest. And yet here we are.
And that's what happened. Hillary can rhyme off dates, names, places, experiences, responsibilities and successes with a facility verging on smugness capable of irritating even her close supporters. Trump, for his part, attacks with blows below the belt and leads with his nose and his chin without any regard for the outcome. It should not even be a contest. And yet here we are. Moreover, he declared a reluctance to accept the results of a potential defeat, he railed against abortion rights blathering on about interrupting the gestation period in the last three weeks of pregnancy, and he called Mexicans “bad hombres”. That was upsetting.
But he stuck to speaking to his base, pandering to it and virtually admitting as much for the entire world to witness. His target is rural America; he wants to solidify their vote. In so doing, he unmasks long time Republicans who have for decades catered to and cultivated this demographic only to abandon its interests once firmly ensconced in their chairs in Washington.
Now, as a result, if Trump loses in November, one half of the American electorate, may scream out that the election was “rigged” and fraudulently stolen from him. It will be difficult for Clinton to establish “legitimacy”.
Are we really sure that she, indeed, won the debate?
(Friday 21 October 2016)