Donald Trump answers a question during the presidential debate in Hempstead, N.Y., Monday, Sept. 26, 2016. (AP/David Goldman)

Hillary trumped Trump: 6 conservative talking heads who say Donald bombed

Not even their hate for Hillary can compel these conservatives to say Trump won the debate

Elizabeth Preza
September 28, 2016 1:06AM (UTC)

This article originally appeared on AlterNet.


Donald Trump’s debate performance was bad; so says the general consensus among even casual political observers who last night witnessed the GOP candidate hold his ground about 10 minutes before sinking into a pool of Rosie O’Donnell insults and begging Sean Hannity for a life preserver.


Even conservative pundits, who have every reason to spin the GOP candidate’s debate performance into a sign that their bloviating demagogue is prepared to be the leader of the most powerful country in the world, are wringing their hands. While some of the more out-there right-wing thinkers (Hannity, everyone at Breitbart) insisted moderator Lester Holt was largely responsible for Trump’s poor debate performance, here are six conservative talking heads who thought Hillary Clinton trumped Trump.

1. Hugh Hewitt: The conservative radio talk show host who frequently hammers the mainstream media for its so-called “liberal bias,” told MSNBC that Trump “blew” the last hour of the debate.

“I think Donald Trump won the first — I clocked it at 29 minutes when birtherism came up,” Hewitt said. “He blew that badly, terribly, and it turned the debate around. She then delivered a knockout blow on speaking to our strategic allies.”

2. John Podhoretz: The conservative columnist for the New York Post wrote a scathing review of Trump’s performance, calling it a “slap in the face to his supporters,” who “should be furious with him.”

Podhoretz said Trump’s “vanity and laziness” were on full display as Clinton “methodically and carefully” attacked the GOP nominee. “Even when he could have taken her down, he was so incompetent he didn’t go for it,” Podhoretz wrote.

“By performing this incompetently, by refusing to prepare properly for this exchange, by not learning enough to put meat on the bones of his populist case against Clinton, he displayed nothing but contempt for the people who have brought him this far — and for the American people who are going to make this momentous decision on Nov. 8,” Podhoretz concluded.


3. Steve Deace: Steve Deace began his slow, painful separation with the Republican Party when Trump became their nominee, but that didn’t stop the conservative Iowa talk radio host from tearing into the GOP candidate’s “total disaster” of a performance.

Deace took to Facebook to lament Trump’s lack of “depth” on major policy issues and his incoherent badgering when the questions got tough. "As I warned for months, Trump simply couldn't carry a credible conversation with the nation by himself for 90 minutes, minus a full stage of others vying for air time,” Deace wrote.

4. Bill Kristol: Weekly Standard editor Bill Kristol, who served as a foreign policy adviser for Sen. John McCain, tore into Trump’s debate performance with a piece bitingly titled, “Trump Choked.”

“I'm not positive Hillary actually won the debate,” Kristol write. “But I'm sure Trump lost it. He choked.”


5. Ben Shapiro: Conservative political commentator Ben Shapiro was seriously unimpressed with Trump’s debate performance, at one point likening it to “sharting.”

6. Greg Gutfeld: Fox News host Greg Gutfeld live-tweeted his thoughts on the debate, calling it “the most disturbing 90 minutes since The Evil Dead" and goading Trump supporters to admit the candidate’s failure.


Elizabeth Preza

MORE FROM Elizabeth Preza

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Alternet Breitbart Debates Donald Trump Elections 2016 Fox News Hillary Clinton

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