The first direct face-off between the two US presidential candidates Tuesday, Sept. 27 ended in a slight edge for the Democrats’ Hillary Clinton versus Republican Donald Trump. But the score was not decisive enough to radically change the close tie prevailing in the polls when the contenders took the stage.
They still face two more debates on Oct. 9 and Oct. 19 before their final round – the Nov. 8 election for president.
Clinton grabbed the advantage by sustained attacks, when she was sharp, focused and personal. In laying out policy she was a lot less pointed, offering the voter no new or exciting ideas. Here her robotic aloofness came into play.
Trump, in contrast, spent the entire 90 minutes largely on the defensive against Clinton’s assaults – chiefly on race and his failure to publish tax returns. He was most vigorous when he accused President Obama and Clinton, as secretary of state, of creating the vacuum in which ISIS was formed, and never stopping its spread to 130 countries.
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