The upcoming debate debacle Skip to content

The upcoming debate debacle

Read the rules for the debate ... then stop and think about Trump. Think the word “debacle” applies?

3 min read

Holy moly! Is the June 27 presidential debate going to be a debacle for former President Donald Trump, or what!

That’s not me as a partisan voicing a wish. No, it’s obvious to anyone who has ever debated anyone over anything. And it’s not even based on Trump’s terrible showings in his previous debates.

It’s based on Trump’s abject stupidity.

Trump’s campaign has agreed to CNN’s rules for the debate. Those on the campaign who can read know that candidates don’t get to introduce themselves, make opening statements of any kind, have just two minutes to answer questions, one minute for each rebuttal, and yet another minute to respond to his opponent’s rebuttal. That’s it. Very. Short. Statements. They can’t consult with handlers, and they can’t interrupt the other guy.

Remember this when Trump whines that everything was sooo unfair! If Trump didn’t realize until later that the rules were stacked against him before he signed on the dotted line, that’s only because he didn’t have someone literate on his campaign to read it to him. No wonder he went bankrupt six times — so far.

How do you prepare for a debate, something very different from stump speeches? The same way you get to Carnegie Hall: practice, practice, practice.

Or you could do nothing and wing it. Guess which route Lazy McSloth is taking? Hint: This is the guy who thought practicing at all before his first debate with Secretary Hillary Clinton would be overpreparing. Instead, he spent the day shooting the breeze with his fans which he disguised as “a survey.”

From The Guardian:

The “Trump debate preparation survey” consisted of 30 questions for supporters, including: “Do you think Trump should refer to Hillary as ‘Crooked Hillary’ on stage?”; “Should Trump contrast his tell-it-like-it-is attitude with Hillary’s running list of lies, corruption, and deceit?”; and “Should Trump contrast himself as a tough negotiator with Hillary’s history of waging endless wars that fail miserably?”

How did he forget about asking if Hillary Clinton had stopped beating her husband?

Did Trump learn anything from his previous debate failures? You’re kidding, right?

As The New York Times reported a few weeks ago, Trump is going to make the same preparations while expecting a different result, the sign of a very stable genius. As the Times wrote on June 15:

For his part, Mr. Trump has never consented to anything resembling traditional, rigorous debate preparation, and this election appears no exception. He has often said that he is at his best when improvising.

So true! That spontaneous decision to stalk Clinton during the second presidential debate in 2016 was so endearing!

But it gets better! And by “better,” I mean more hilarious.

Marc Lotter, an aide to the 2020 campaign who’s not working for Trump this time around, told The New York Times that Trump “views his rallies as debate prep.” Right! A format where you can ramble as much as you want on whatever topic you choose is exactly like a debate, where you have two minutes per answer to questions you don’t know in advance.

“If they’re literally going to cut your mic, you’ve got to hit your marks” by tightening up your answers to little more than a sound bite, Lotter added. Yeah, good luck with that.

But I will allow musician and Substack writer Jeff Tiedrich explain how badly the debate will go:

Oh please — no way is Donny going to “tighten answers” and “hit his marks.” That’s a pipe dream. Donny won’t be able to constrain himself to a two-minute answer — it takes the guy at least three minutes just to get to the point, if he ever gets there at all. What do you think is going to happen the first time that red light flashes and Donny gets cut off mid-sentence and realizes he’s talking into a dead mic? He’s going to melt all the way down, that’s what’s going to happen. He’s going to throw a shit-fit. He’s going to come unglued — and when his mic is turned back on for the one-minute rebuttal, he’s going to spend that entire 60 seconds whining about how unfair and rigged everything is.

Tiedrich’s famous for his skewering of Donald Trump. But Trump’s minions seem to agree with Tiedrich in their hearts, even if they won’t say it out loud.

Fox News’ Sean Hannity, RNC Co-Chair and First Daughter-in-Law Lara Trump, and Ronny “Johnson” Jackson, White House personal physician and drug dealer turned congressman, all prepared their audience for Biden to blow Orange Jesus away by claiming in advance that Biden would be “hyper caffeinated” and likely to win. Doesn’t sound like they have much confidence in their boy, does it?

Well, they probably shouldn’t.


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Ivonne Rovira

Ivonne is the research director for Save Our Schools Kentucky. She previously worked for The Miami Herald, the Miami News, and The Associated Press. (Read the rest on the Contributors page.)