The days leading to the final debate have been consumed by accusations from women who were allegedly groped or kissed by Donald Trump without consent, and emails of John Podesta from WikiLeaks. With both candidates slandering each other and buying air time for attack ads on major channels, is it any wonder that they did not shake hands? Even Mike Pence said before the debate that whether they choose to do so can be very spontaneous. Spontaneous it was, the final debate appeared to be, in my opinion, the most substantial one among the three.
Both candidates touched down on core issues—Trump mentioned the wall for the first time in this series of debates—such as supreme court appointments, immigration policy and foreign policy.
To be very honest, if I had not known Trump before and tonight was the first time that I have met him, I would say he has done a good job. There was a moment when he threw a few solid punches at Clinton and she had to defend herself on the matter of foreign policy, but that was the full extent to which Trump actually trumped her. On other issues, they were simply undermining each other’s claims while hardly solidifying their own.
One hot issue tonight was immigration policy. Trump said he would deport illegal immigrants and build that wall, he would also deny Syrian refugees in order to maintain domestic safety. Clinton, on the other hand, would introduce a comprehensive package to currently undocumented immigrants to gain citizenship and welcome Syrian refugees.
Another big topic tonight was foreign policy and the two candidates somehow managed to always pivot to it. Trump spent as much time and effort as possible criticizing Clinton’s judgments during her 30 years in the government, particularly on the Iran Nuclear Deal and ISIS, saying the deal was a disaster and that ISIS was the creation of her poor judgment. Clinton lashed out against Trump’s inexperience and immaturity as a politician, quoting from president Obama that Trump is whining about the “rigged election.”
When Trump was asked about whether he would accept the outcome of the election, he replied to the moderator Chris Wallace, “I’ll keep you in suspense. Okay?” Before the debate, his running mate Pence and his daughter Ivanka Trump have both said that he would accept the outcome, making the billionaire’s shocking response even further beyond our imagination.
If and when Clinton won, should Trump chooses to deny and question the result to which a bipartisan democratic process leads, he will be capable of starting a revolution—even a riot. The idea that the election and the media are being rigged is deeply rooted among Trump’s base, and this could be a time bomb if not dealt properly.