Chaos Plays to Trump’s Hand

Update 477: Chaos Plays to Trump’s Hand
But Post-Debate I, It’s Still a Losing Hand

Down in the polls for months, Donald Trump needed to move the needle with a spectacular performance. And it was…spectacularly devoid of policy. The spectacle will be repeated next time if only to distract the 133 million Americans with pre-existing conditions lest they figure out his plan for them.

The dearth of policy substance in last night’s debate actually presents opportunities for Democrats to fill the void. We outline some of these, like health care, economic policy and political reform. And, as usual, offer modest suggestions.




Last night, Vice President Biden and President Trump faced off in the first of three scheduled presidential debates. The debate, hosted in Cleveland, Ohio and moderated by Fox News’s Chris Wallace, quickly devolved into chaotic cross-talk as Trump frequently interrupted Biden and Wallace struggled to maintain control. 

Despite the disorder and a shaky start, Biden managed to emerge victorious. A CBS/YouGov poll indicated 48 percent of watchers think Biden won the debate, compared to 41 percent who believe Trump did. The Vice President’s campaign raised $3.8 million between 10-11 PM ET last night, the best 1-hour fundraising period the campaign has had this cycle. 

Below, we focus on the candidates’ statements on economic policy and democracy, elucidate what went wrong, and offer suggestions for how to improve the debates in the future.

Kitchen Table Issues 

Between the incessant interruptions and intermittent sniping, the candidates were able to touch on the two kitchen table issues on most Americans’ minds — healthcare and the economy. While Biden came prepared to talk about policy, Trump took to the debate stage armed only with personal insults and excuses. 

  • Healthcare: Last night’s debate opened with a question on the current vacancy of the Supreme Court, and Biden immediately pivoted to the issue of healthcare. Biden homed in on the precarity of Roe v. Wade and the Trump administration’s efforts to overturn the Affordable Care Act (ACA) in the Supreme Court. 

    Biden pointed out that Trump’s challenge to the ACA would strip 20 million people of health insurance and endanger 100 million more with pre-existing conditions. Trump denied that the case would have a major impact, going so far as to dispute that many Americans had preexisting conditions. But a 2017 HHS report estimates as many as 133 million people could lose coverage due to pre-existing conditions. Trump signed an executive order this month, promising coverage for those with pre-existing conditions. However, experts have shown that the order guarantees few protections compared to the ACA. Biden dismissed the order as mere “wishful thinking.”

    Since assuming office, Trump has aimed to eliminate the ACA, despite its overwhelming popularity. But Republicans have yet to offer any healthcare plan of their own to replace it. Though Trump accused Biden of backing “socialist medicine,” Biden retorted that his healthcare plan only adds a public option to the ACA for those that already qualify for Medicaid. 
  • Tax Policy: Wallace wasted little time before bringing up the New York Times report revealing that Trump paid only $750 in federal income taxes for 2016 and 2017. In response, Trump claimed that he paid “millions of dollars” in taxes but again refused to release his returns. Hours before the debate, Biden released his 2019 tax return, showing he paid nearly $300,000 in total federal taxes. 

    This dispute morphed into a broader discussion on tax policy, with Biden emphasizing that Trump had taken advantage of existing tax laws and vowing to repeal the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017. Biden also mentioned raising the corporate tax rate. His tax proposal will raise the corporate income tax to 28 percent and create a corporate minimum tax on book income.
  • Economic Relief & Recovery: Given the opportunity, Trump touted the performance of the pre-pandemic economy and blamed the current crisis entirely on China. The president went on to falsely claim that Biden oversaw the slowest economic recovery in American history. 

    Dismissing Trump’s claims outright, Biden noted that Obama inherited a recession but left a booming economy that crumbled under Trump’s watch. Biden pointed to his role in saving the auto industry after 2008, highlighting his proven ability to facilitate economic recovery. Biden also touted his plans to restore the economy and provide immediate relief to the American people, mentioning an economic forecast predicting his plans would create 7 million more jobs than Trump’s. 


In the last section of the night, the debate turned to democracy and the upcoming election. Biden rebuffed claims of voter fraud, stating that Trump’s own Homeland Security Secretary and FBI Director indicated there was no risk of voter fraud from mail-in ballots. Trump predictably repeated his unsubstantiated claims of widespread voter fraud in a confusing rant about finding ballots in creeks and individuals receiving two ballots. This month, Trump encouraged North Carolinian supporters to violate the law by voting twice. 

In the last moments of the debate, Biden encouraged the public to vote and stated he would accept the results of the election once independently verified. Trump refused to say that he would accept the election outcome, proclaimed that the election is already rigged, and urged his supporters to “watch very carefully.” In the first week of early voting in Virginia, Trump supporters in Fairfax reportedly harassed and intimidated voters while waving Trump banners in putative or prima facie violation of federal election law. 

What Went Wrong and How to Fix It

The debate appalled many with the President’s hectoring of Biden at every turn and race-baiting at an alarming level, raising questions about how the rest of the debates will go. Today, the Commission on Presidential Debates stated it will make changes to the structure of the subsequent debates to prevent a recurrence of the disarray seen last night. The second debate, which will have a town-hall style featuring questions from undecided voters, may prompt Trump to adopt a less aggressive strategy. Should the interruptions and cross-talk continue, however, moderators may consider taking matters into their own hands and mute the microphone of the obstructing candidate. 

70 thoughts on “Chaos Plays to Trump’s Hand”

  1. Heya i’m for the first time here. I came across this board and I to find It truly helpful & it helped me out much. I’m hoping to present something back and aid others like you aided me.

  2. hello!,I really like your writing very a lot! share we keep in touch more about your article on AOL? I need an expert on this house to resolve my problem. May be that’s you! Taking a look forward to peer you.

  3. I have been browsing on-line greater than three hours nowadays, but I by no means discovered any fascinating article like yours.
    It is beautiful value sufficient for me. Personally, if all site owners and bloggers made excellent content material as you probably did, the internet will probably be a lot more useful than ever before.
    0mniartist asmr

  4. It is appropriate time to make some plans for the longer term and it’s
    time to be happy. I’ve learn this post and if I may just I wish to counsel you some fascinating issues or suggestions.
    Maybe you can write next articles referring to this
    article. I wish to read even more issues approximately it! 0mniartist asmr

  5. I’m amazed, I have to admit. Rarely do I come across a blog
    that’s both educative and entertaining, and without a doubt, you have
    hit the nail on the head. The issue is something too few men and women are speaking intelligently about.
    I am very happy that I found this during my hunt for something regarding this.
    0mniartist asmr

  6. Fantastic blog you have here but I was curious if you knew of any forums that cover the same topics talked about in this article?

    I’d really love to be a part of group where I can get responses from other experienced people that share the same interest.
    If you have any suggestions, please let me know. Bless you!
    0mniartist asmr

  7. Heya i’m for the first time here. I came across this board and I find It truly useful & it helped me out much.
    I am hoping to offer something back and help
    others such as you helped me.

  8. Hi! This post could not be written any better!
    Reading through this post reminds me of my good old room mate!
    He always kept chatting about this. I will forward
    this post to him. Fairly certain he will have a good
    read. Thanks for sharing!

  9. Hey there I am so excited I found your site, I really found you by error,
    while I was researching on Yahoo for something else, Anyhow I am here now and would just like
    to say thank you for a incredible post and a all round enjoyable blog (I
    also love the theme/design), I don’t have time to read through
    it all at the moment but I have bookmarked it and also added in your RSS feeds,
    so when I have time I will be back to read more, Please do keep up the excellent work.

  10. I’m really impressed with your writing talents as neatly as with
    the layout to your weblog. Is that this a paid theme or did you modify it yourself?
    Anyway stay up the nice high quality writing, it is rare to
    see a great blog like this one nowadays..

  11. Have you ever considered creating an ebook or
    guest authoring on other sites? I have a blog centered on the
    same information you discuss and would really like to have
    you share some stories/information. I know my visitors
    would enjoy your work. If you are even remotely interested, feel free to shoot me an e-mail.

  12. Hi, i think that i noticed you visited my web site thus
    i got here to go back the want?.I am attempting to in finding things to enhance my site!I assume its ok to use
    some of your ideas!!

  13. I do not even understand how I stopped up right here, however I assumed this
    put up was once good. I do not recognize who you are
    but certainly you’re going to a famous blogger should you aren’t
    already. Cheers!

  14. I intended to post you a bit of word just to thank you once again for all the stunning principles you have shown on this website. This has been so surprisingly generous with people like you to supply unhampered what exactly most of us could have marketed for an e book in order to make some money on their own, mostly now that you could have tried it if you wanted. These ideas additionally served like a easy way to be certain that most people have the identical zeal similar to my very own to understand more with regard to this condition. Certainly there are many more enjoyable sessions in the future for individuals who look over your website.

  15. scoliosis
    Hello every one, here every one is sharing these knowledge,
    therefore it’s fastidious to read this webpage, and I used to
    pay a quick visit this website every day.


  16. I simply couldn’t depart your website prior to suggesting that I really enjoyed the usual info a person provide in your guests? Is going to be again continuously in order to investigate cross-check new posts.

  17. I would like to thnkx for the efforts you have put in writing this blog. I am hoping the same high-grade blog post from you in the upcoming as well. In fact your creative writing abilities has inspired me to get my own blog now. Really the blogging is spreading its wings quickly. Your write up is a good example of it.

  18. magnificent points altogether, you simply gained a
    new reader. What could you recommend in regards to your publish that you made some
    days in the past? Any positive?

  19. You really make it seem so easy with your presentation but I find this matter to be actually something that I think I would never understand.
    It seems too complicated and extremely broad for me. I’m looking forward for your
    next post, I will try to get the hang of it!

  20. Hi there very nice blog!! Man .. Beautiful ..

    Amazing .. I’ll bookmark your website and take the feeds also?
    I’m satisfied to search out so many useful information here in the publish, we
    need work out more strategies in this regard, thanks for sharing.
    . . . . .

  21. Valuable information. Lucky me I discovered your website unintentionally, and I’m surprised why this coincidence didn’t happened in advance!
    I bookmarked it.

  22. Greetings! Quick question that’s totally off topic. Do you know how to make your site
    mobile friendly? My blog looks weird when browsing from my apple iphone.
    I’m trying to find a template or plugin that might be able
    to resolve this issue. If you have any suggestions, please share.

    Many thanks!

  23. Having read this I thought it was very informative. I appreciate you taking the time and effort to put this article together. I once again find myself spending way to much time both reading and commenting. But so what, it was still worth it!

  24. First off I would like to say fantastic blog! I had a quick question in which I’d like to ask if you don’t mind.

    I was curious to find out how you center yourself and clear your mind prior
    to writing. I’ve had difficulty clearing my mind in getting my thoughts
    out there. I truly do take pleasure in writing but it just seems like the first 10 to 15 minutes are generally wasted simply just trying to figure out how to begin. Any ideas or hints?

  25. I love your blog.. very nice colors & theme. Did you create this website yourself? Plz reply back as I’m looking to create my own blog and would like to know wheere u got this from. thanks

  26. This is a very good tips especially to those new to blogosphere, brief and accurate information… Thanks for sharing this one. A must read article.

  27. I am no longer sure the place you are getting your information, but good topic. I needs to spend some time finding out much more or working out more. Thanks for excellent info I used to be looking for this info for my mission.

  28. I must thank you for the efforts you have put in writing this website. I really hope to check out the same high-grade blog posts from you later on as well. In truth, your creative writing abilities has motivated me to get my very own website now 😉

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *