Democrats are euphoric about Hillary Clinton’s performance last night, and probably even more so over Donald Trump’s performance. For the reasons I have said in other posts, their celebrations might be premature. But the point of this post is to note how the press is doing its best to drive the Democrats’ narrative forward.
The Associated Press used to be regarded as an objective, straight-up news source. Now it is an adjunct of the Democratic Party. These are stories the AP has published since last night’s debate began, along with the opening sentence or paragraph of each report:
In a combative opening debate, Hillary Clinton emphatically denounced Donald Trump Monday night for keeping his personal tax returns and business dealings secret from voters and peddling a “racist lie” about President Barack Obama.
NBC’s Lester Holt struggled to keep control of the first debate between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump, learning the dangers of fact-checking in the midst of a tense confrontation being viewed by tens of millions of people.
Holt challenged the candidates, particularly Trump, on factual matters as the debate went on.
Donald Trump repeatedly clashed with Hillary Clinton during Monday’s first presidential debate, interrupting her and appearing agitated at times as they tangled over the economy, her use of a private mail server and his unwillingness to release his income tax returns. Clinton maintained an even demeanor, smiling indulgently when Trump turned aggressive.
Donald Trump’s habit of peddling hype and fabrication emerged unabated in the first presidential debate while Hillary Clinton played it cautiously in her statements, though not without error.
Donald Trump has a cold. Or at least something gave him the sniffles.
The Republican nominee sniffled very loudly throughout much of the first general election debate Monday, eliciting a slew of comments and jokes on social media.
It was the opening Hillary Clinton had been waiting for all night.
Late in Monday’s debate, when the candidates each had notched their points on trade, taxes, crime and more, the talk turned to Clinton’s stamina, brought to the fore by her recent bout of pneumonia.
Moderator Lester Holt of NBC asked Trump what he had meant by questioning whether Clinton had a “presidential look.”
Trump didn’t back off: “She doesn’t have the look,” he reaffirmed. “She doesn’t have the stamina.”
“You have so many different things you have to be able to do and I don’t believe Hillary has the stamina.”
He made his point, feeding into the conspiracy theories swirling about Clinton’s health, as well as feeding into sexist questions about whether a woman is tough enough for the job.
Clinton stood stock still, waiting to pounce.
First, she let fly a recitation of her exploits as secretary of state: travels to 112 countries, negotiations on peace deals, cease-fires and imprisoned dissidents — even the 11 hours she spent testifying before a congressional committee investigating the Benghazi situation.
Once Trump can do all that, said Clinton, “He can talk to me about stamina.”
Then, she quickly pivoted to the point she’d been dying to make all night, hoping to turn every woman in America against him and evoking memories of Trump’s boorish behavior in the primary election season.
Trump, she said, had tried to switch the context of his remarks from talking about her “looks” to her “stamina.”
“But this is a man who called women pigs, slobs and dogs,” she continued.
She was at her best. He was not at his worst.
Your daily look at late-breaking news, upcoming events and the stories that will be talked about today:
1. HOW CLINTON, TRUMP PERFORMED IN FIRST DEBATE
The Democrat put the Republican on the defensive for much of the 90-minute presidential showdown, even as he tried to pin the nation’s economic and national security problems on her.
Donald Trump says it was a “real problem” when the 1996 Miss Universe gained significant weight after winning the pageant he then owned.
Donald Trump’s running mate is breaking with the Republican nominee’s claim that climate change is not the result of human activity.
Vice presidential nominee Mike Pence said Tuesday “there’s no question” that human activity affects both the climate and the environment.
Vice President Joe Biden on Tuesday questioned Donald Trump’s “moral center” as a result of the Republican presidential candidate’s comments about America’s housing collapse.
That’s a pretty impressive output of pro-Democratic Party/Hillary Clinton propaganda, given that the debate has been over for less than 24 hours. If the AP were run by the Democratic National Committee, how different would its news coverage be? Not very, I think. Whether the AP still has the power to swing an election, given our almost universal skepticism of the partisan press, is another question.
UPDATE: The news stories keep on coming.
Donald Trump says “you don’t learn that much from tax returns,” a dubious assertion that has renewed attention on his refusal to release documents that could shed light on his tax rate, charitable giving and foreign business ties.
Trump’s Democratic rival, Hillary Clinton, was happy to seize on the issue, questioning in the first presidential debate what Trump is trying to hide by bucking decades of campaign tradition in keeping his 1040s private. She referred to the several years in which it is known that Trump paid nothing in federal taxes.
When Donald Trump challenged Hillary Clinton’s stamina on the debate stage, Pennsylvania voter Patricia Bennett said she heard a “dog whistle” that smacked of unmistakable sexism.
The Georgia state director for the Donald J. Trump campaign has resigned after his criminal past was revealed.
All of these stories will appear in hundreds of newspapers.