Take a look: Chronicling the second presidential debate

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Take a look: Chronicling the second presidential debate

The Pitt News' live blog for the third presidential debate. Photo by DonkeyHotey / Flickr.

The Pitt News' live blog for the third presidential debate. Photo by DonkeyHotey / Flickr.

The Pitt News' live blog for the third presidential debate. Photo by DonkeyHotey / Flickr.

The Pitt News' live blog for the third presidential debate. Photo by DonkeyHotey / Flickr.

By The Pitt News Staff

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Welcome to The Pitt News’ hub for 2016 election coverage. Here you’ll find stories about Trump, Clinton and third party supporters on campus, live debate coverage, updates on visits from politicians and analysis from our opinions writers with their takes on this year’s contentious election.

Sunday night, columnists Tim Nerozzi and Henry Glitz, Opinions Editors Matt Moret and Kirsten Wong and editors Elizabeth Lepro and Dale Shoemaker will be blogging about the second presidential debate. Follow along on Twitter for polls and more hot takes.

Okay, that’s it for us. Tune in Oct. 19 for our live coverage of the third and final debate. Thanks for joining us! To those of you who are seeing this later – welcome! Just scroll to the bottom of this page to start at the beginning of our commentary. If you have suggestions as to how we can improve our next live blog, email us at editor@pittnews.com or manager@pittnews.com. 

10;40 – Dale Shoemaker

I do have to add this: That last question and the handshake ended the debate on a surprisingly civil note. It was a big change from the past 90 minutes. Let’s see if it holds up from here on out.

10:37 – Timothy Nerozzi
Indictment of Trump self-funding his own campaign is an indictment of capitalism itself.

10:36 – Kirsten Wong

Wait, the Donald does have a heart. If only he knew Hillary’s back-handed compliment was anything but a compliment.

10:31 – Henry Glitz

Trump’s ability to “self-fund” his campaign is probably the biggest indictment of obscenely large inherited fortunes in America today. The fact that an empty-headed millionaire can self-fund himself all the way into a presidential debate is possibly even more frightening than the prospect of super PACs buying conventional politicians to win elections.

10:30 – Timothy Nerozzi

I completely disagree with Kirsten. There is literally nothing morally wrong with funding your own campaign. It is the purest and least morally corrupt way to fund a campaign. Criticizing him for funding his own campaign is criticizing him for being a success.

10:28 – Kirsten Wong

Hillary may be the biggest beneficiary of Citizens United, but Trump self-funding his campaign is also problematic, given he has $100 million to spend freely on his campaign. Both represent what is corrupting our democracy. Money should not determine political elections so heavily.

10:27 – Timothy Nerozzi

Please notice that Trump is the only one that mentioned the Constitution when the entire point of the Supreme Court is interpreting the Constitution of the United States.

10:27 – Saket Rajprohat

When Trump’s Supreme Court Decisions are “highly thought of and reviewed by almost everybody,” does that mean my lack of knowledge about his decisions means I’m not somebody? Great mysteries of Trump.

10:26 – Henry Glitz

Casual reminder that, as of July, Merrick Garland has had the longest waiting period for a Senate hearing of any Supreme Court nomination in history — a blatant snubbing of Congress’s Constitutional duties.

10:22 – Kirsten Wong

Answering a question on leadership with “I’m not unproud of it” in regards to using tweets to communicate to the public is sadly unleader-like.

10:22 – Henry Glitz

Trump’s equating of tweeting at 3 a.m. with being ready for the proverbial “3 a.m. phone call” has to be the most creative deflection of the entire debate.

10:23 – Dale Shoemaker

Trump’s impassioned defense of Twitter as a platform was a nice moment of comedic relief in this deplorable debate.

10:20 – Matt Moret

Why are so few of the questions at this “town hall” being asked by people sitting there for the sole purpose of asking questions?

10:10 – Kirsten Wong

Clinton saying that she wants to reach out to all groups and people comes off as disingenuous before apologizing for calling Trump’s supporters deplorables. Trump has failed miserably in this arena as well, but unity is crucial in this election.

10:19 – Henry Glitz

This is exactly the kind of rhetoric Clinton needs to be engaging in right now and that the town hall format is especially conducive to: anecdotal, optimistic stories about working together to help everyone get by.

10:15 – Timothy Nerozzi

That was the worst question of the debate. What does it even mean?

10:14 – Matt Moret

Trump keeps getting cut off for going long because he’s not answering the questions posed to him at all. Clinton should be cut off more often for it, but at least she’s saying something worth explaining in full.

10:17 – Saket Rajprohat

“Sneak attack…” Bam! Boom! Pow!

Editor’s Note: Our columnist, Saket Rajprohat, will join us here as well. As a disclaimer, Saket volunteers with the Clinton campaign. 

10:05 Timothy Nerozzi
And…what is Aleppo?

10:10 – Henry Glitz

I think it comes as a surprise to us all that Syria is “now Russia.” Trump’s childish foreign policy is a national disgrace and should be disqualifying on its own.

10:08 – Matt Moret

FACT CHECK: Clinton is right to point out she was done as Secretary of State when Obama’s “line in the sand” was crossed. Assad used chemical weapons in May 2013, but she left the administration in February 2013.

10:06 – Henry Glitz

As imperfect a policy on Russia as Clinton has, it’s important that she brings up that Putin’s affinity for Trump only means that a Trump victory would be a godsend for Russian opposition to American influence in the Middle East and the rest of the world.

10:04 – Kirsten Wong

At least these candidates know what Aleppo is.

10:00 – Matt Moret

Not really a fact-check, just basic civics: One senator can’t do much of anything, that’s kinda the point behind a bicameral legislative body.

9:59 – Kirsten Wong

Not sure why Trump keeps bringing Bernie Sanders into the debate as if he would be on his side. Sanders’ entire campaign was built on reducing income inequality and reigning in on the wealthy and special interests — Trump being the main culprit of this broken system.

9:57 – Timothy Nerozzi

Yes, Clinton. Let’s eat the rich. I’m sure it will work out.

9:56 – Dale Shoemaker

FACT CHECK: Trump should have known that Clinton was talking about the movie “Lincoln” in her speech. He’s seen it and praised it in 2012.

9:51 – Matt Moret

Bragging that you “know nothing” about political structures in one of the largest, most powerful and controversial countries in the world isn’t really a great appeal for credibility by Trump.

9:49 – Matt Moret

FACT CHECK: Despite Trump’s eye-rolling, Clinton was in fact discussing Lincoln’s passage of the 13th Amendment during the comment about public and private faces. Guess he didn’t actually read the transcripts.

9:47 – Henry Glitz

FACT CHECK: The crime rate among illegal immigrants in the United States is significantly lower than that of native-born citizens. Unsurprisingly, Trump’s claims about immigration are less fact than hysteria.

9:46 – Kirsten Wong

FACT CHECK: The majority of refugees that come into the United States are women and children. The State Department reported that 78 percent of the 8,000 refugees admitted were women and children, not terrorists.

9:46 – Matt Moret

FACT CHECK: Clinton is correct – Trump bashing Muslims does appear in ISIS propaganda videos.

9:45 – Elizabeth Lepro

Here’s what the White House’s refugee vetting process already looks like.

9:42 — Elizabeth Lepro

Important for both candidates to remember that many countries in the Middle East are not majority Muslim. A conversation about Islam doesn’t just refer to the Middle East, nor does it refer broadly to all of the countries in that region.

9:39 – Matt Moret

The question was about how you will prevent Muslims from receiving a blanket label as threatening to this country. Trump’s strategy of insisting we should call bad ones “radical” doesn’t really resolve how he’ll protect them from being incorrectly profiled as such. Then Clinton eloquently explains a stance about the consequences of labeling that has existed on both sides since George W. Bush was president. The winner so far is really obvious.

9:35 – Kirsten Wong

Being politically correct is not what’s causing violence and terrorism, but Trump’s rhetoric is. Broad generalizations always do more harm than good, but Trump insists on mislabeling groups that are anything but his own race.

9:34 Timothy Nerozzi

Refreshing to get on a topic that both candidates can talk about intelligently and thoroughly. Especially surprising that Trump can form a coherent thought on a policy position.

9:31 – Matt Moret
Calling himself a gentleman is the single biggest Trump lie of this entire election.

9:30 – Dale Shoemaker

Calls for Clinton to go to prison. Bickering. Talking back to moderators. Audience reacting loudly. There is no decorum in this debate. This event is meant to be a town hall where voters can hear directly from their candidates, not a playground fight. This is despicable.

9:30 Timothy Nerozzi
Someone has taught Trump to channel his anger into a coherent and semi-professional form of speech. Impressive, considering his trainwreck of a debate last time.

9:30 – Henry Glitz

“I want to know why we aren’t talking about the emails” — Trump, after a ten-minute tirade directed against Clinton about that very issue.

9:28 – Matt Moret
Interesting that Trump is taking this moral high ground about caring for confidential information after he implored Russia to hack the U.S. and find them.

9:26 Timothy Nerozzi
Trump is coming out swinging tonight.

9:25 Kirsten Wong

Hillary is capable of taking responsibility for her shortcomings, a key characteristic that any strong leader would do. Trump’s unwillingness to admit wrongdoing for his scandals is childish and careless.

9:21 – Matt Moret

FACT CHECK: Once again, time to point out that Hillary Clinton’s team did not start the birther movement.

9:21 Timothy Nerozzi

American politics has now come to two different people who have continually harassed women trying to make the other one look worse.

9:20 Timothy Nerozzi
Trump just dropped the bomb. Clinton is now on defensive.

9:19 – Henry Glitz

Trump’s already taken the initiative to derail the purpose of this debate — a town hall that’s meant to put ordinary voters’ concerns at the forefront — and shifted it to a smear campaign against Bill Clinton’s sexual history. This is probably Trump’s best strategy to avoid exposing his disconnect on a personal and policy level with voters, but it won’t do any good for the American public.

9:15 – Kirsten Wong

“It’s just words, folks, it’s just words,” Trump said about his comments about condoning sexual assault, advancing on married women and feeling entitled to women’s bodies. Tell that to every victim of sexual violence.

9:10 – Elizabeth Lepro 
The same world where ISIS is “chopping off heads” is a world where sexual assault affects one out of six women nationally, millions of women all around the world, every single day. Both worlds exist. One does not make the other less threatening. Good on Cooper for correctly calling sexual assault for what it is.

9:11 – Matt Moret

Trump actually saying his comments aren’t an example of sexual assault is already a sign he has no clue what sexism is. This isn’t a question about ISIS, it’s about personal responsibility.

9:10 – Henry Glitz

Trump seems to be starting this debate off without his typically brash attitude in favor of a more understated speaking style. I have to wonder if that’s an attempt to reverse his debate approach from the first debate, or just a result of feeling on the defense in the aftermath of his leaked comments about sexual assault.

9:08 – Tim Nerozzi

“Our country is great because we’re good.” Off to a great start.

9:08 – Dale Shoemaker

Looks like Clinton is taking a page from Michelle Obama, “When they go low, we go high.”

9:08 – Matt Moret

Clinton could easily have turned this question into a chance for bashing Trump’s ability to set a good example for children, but went positive instead. Hopefully this is a sign of actual platform discussion rather than hostility. Wouldn’t really bet on that lasting too long, though.

9:01 – Kirsten Wong

Opinions Editor, Kirsten Wong here. With Trump’s latest scandal of released Access Hollywood videos demeaning women, along with Wikileaks release of Hillary’s emails from Goldman Sach’s, let’s see if this debate will be a highschool gossip machine or a presidential debate on issues and policy specifics.

8:59 – Matt Moret

Assistant Opinions Editor Matt Moret here. Trump having the women who’ve accused Bill Clinton of sexual assault is one of the more bizarre moves he’s made, likely an indicator of what path he’s planning to take in addressing his Access Hollywood tapes. Probably not going to be much of a focus on defending those remarks.

8:50 – Henry Glitz

Hey everybody, opinions columnist Henry Glitz here. Excited to see how this second presidential debate turns out — this could be Donald Trump’s best remaining chance to turn the polls and the election in his favor.

8:32 – Dale Shoemaker

Hey everyone, Dale Shoemaker here. We’re about 30 minutes away from debate time. We’re all gearing up here for the debate here in the newsroom.

Undoubtedly, the tape of Donald Trump lewdly describing how he sexually harassed women will come up in some form tonight, though it’s looking like he’ll try to deflect any criticism onto his opponent Hillary Clinton. Just a few hours ago, Trump held a press conference with women who have accused Bill Clinton of sexually assaulting them. Since The Washington Post published the 11-year-old hot-mic tape Friday evening, Trump and his surrogates have largely been avoiding the media accept to try to paint the Clintons as worse abusers of women.

As many Republican leaders abandoned their support of him over the weekend and some called for him to step down, this debate could make or break Trump’s campaign. He’ll need to do a powerful job of convincing his supporters who were offended by the tape to stick by his side.


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