The Winner of the Third Presidential Debate

Clearly, this was the most substantive of the three presidential debate.  Chris Wallace was clearly in control and made for a much better discussion of policy.  The very first question (which Hillary never answered) asked about Supreme Court justices and how constitutional interpretative philosophy.  That was the best first question of any debate I’ve ever seen.  Kudos, Mr. Wallace – you’ve been the best moderator of a presidential debate this season.

Who was the winner?  As a #neverTrump guy, it pains me to say it but I think Trump won.  He did what he had to do, which was sure up his base.  Did he change any minds?  I think he gave conservatives who have been abandoning him a reason to come back.  He was throwing red meat to evangelical voters who have serious doubts about the guy.

Overall, we saw a different Donald Trump last night.  He seemed much more informed and prepared.  The first 20 minutes were almost flawless.  He was even patient, at times.  But, of course, he was still slinging mud and hurling insults like a little child.  But, I will give him credit for much needed and appreciated improvement.

My number one issue has always been abortion.  I appreciated Trump’s stance.  Was he sincere?  I have no idea.  But, he stuck to his guns when it would have been easy to waiver.  He threw the horrors of partial-birth abortion in her face and made her own this disgusting, vile butchering of human lives already born!  Was it the best defense of pro-life values?  No.  But, it was the strongest stance I’ve seen the Donald take.  I’m going to give him credit for that.

For many people, Trump disqualified himself for not vowing to accept the results of the election if he losses.  Now, these charges of a rigged election are simply ridiculous.    The media is behind this, really?  The guy is delusional (thus my #neverTrump stance).  But, why should the guy vow to accept an election result no matter what?  There could be legitimate issues that night (think 2000 election).  My problem is not him refusing to take a vow but the reason he would not.

Ok, here are my live tweets starting from bottom to top (@kevinjthompson):

Hillary is hitting this rigged election question out of the park.  #debatenight

Donald was actually doing well until he puts on the tinfoil hat and starts talking rigged election.  #debatenight

Trump pivots to Hillary’s e-mail and thus no one will push Hillary to answer about her husband’s philandering.They’ve moved on #debatenight

Ok,  the wheels are now coming off for  Trump.  He was incoherent trying to defend himself against groping allegations #debatenight

kevinjthompson ‏@kevinjthompson  9h9 hours ago

If he can’t mention wiki-leaks, she can’t mention Trump’s illegally leaked tax returns. #debatenight

“Because he wants a puppet.” – Hillary’s best line so far, and she’s rattling Donald.  #debatenight

I’m actuality rooting for Trump, this is a different candidate tonight.   #debatenight

Would love to hear Trump take a firm pro-life stance here.  #debatenight

Trump wants justices that will interpret the Constitution by original intent.  He knocked that out of the park.   #debatenight

That is the best first question of any debate I’ve ever watched.  Hillary isn’t answering it.  #debatenight

This may be the only time Chris Wallace appears on MSNBC. #debatenight

So Trump has his own fake news coverage of the debate on Facebook live.  Maybe the only way he’ll get positive coverage. Sounds like rigging


Peter Theron Visits My Classroom


About two weeks ago congressional candidate Peter Theron stopped by my classroom to chat with my students.  Peter is running for Congress in the Wisconsin’s second district, running against incumbent Mark Pocan.   He spoke about the significance of disclaimers on political ads before taking questions.

It’s been a real pleasure getting to know Peter in the past couple of years.  He is a level-headed conservative during a time it seems the entire GOP is losing its head.  Peter Theron really is exactly the type of guy I would want representing me in Congress.

Learn more about his campaign here –

Who Won the Second Presidential Debate?

Who one tonight’s debate – It’s hard to say.  Really, the answer is no one.  This is the worst presidential debate I’ve seen in my lifetime.  Accusation after accusation, pettiness upon pettiness.  One insult right after another.  Questions ignored, everyone interrupted and moderators all over the place.  No one came out of this looking good.

I will make this concession, Trump did much better than I thought he would.  This could have been the nail in his political coffin, but his performance tonight does allow him to live and fight another day.  He played straight to his base, offering them red meat which should serve to energize them once again.  It is clear, Trump is not going anywhere.

But, let me again repeat, his comments caught on tape and referenced in the the first few questions in the debate are reprehensible.  This is not locker room banter – these are the words of a predator forcing himself upon non-consenting women.  This is criminal, wicked and inexcusable.  The very fact that he continues to call it simple locker room banter shows his insensitivity and lack of remorse.  A truly remorseful person would take responsibility and call it what it is.  Instead Trump tries to justify his actions by redirecting attention to someone else.  Wicked, purely wicked.  This “man” should never be president and should drop out of the race.

Here are my live-tweets from the night, starting from the bottom and going right on up…

Hillary turns the question into a chance to talk about herself. Trump compliments her the entire time. Classiest thing he said all night.

Best question all night – name something you respect about the other candidate. What can Trump say about the Devil? #debate

That man in the red who asked about energy, looks like an snl character just waiting to happen. #debate

Pro-lifers, Trump didn’t say anything about abortion in term sof the Supreme Court. #debate

So there goes Mike Pence under the bus #Debates2016

Here’s my proposal for a debate rule – no candidate can mention another candidate unless that candidate was mentioned in the q #Debates2016

Someone ask Hillary, define “fair share.” Who decides this and what calculation is used to come to this decision? #Debates2016

How is being rude to the moderators going to help you? #Debates2016

So the answer is no, Donald. You are not for a ban. You were wrong, just say it. #Debates2016

I will say that’s the best policy response I’ve ever heard Trump give #Obamacare #Debates2016

“He clarified what he meant and its totally clear.” Hillary on Bill’s Obamacare remarks. What? #debate

In a presidential debate, Trump refers to his opponent as the devil. #debate

Blaming the ref is a sign of your team’s weakness, just like Trump blaming the moderator #debate

What’s going on right now is the worst presidential debate you will see in your lifetime. #debate

He’s not sorry at all! Locker room talk? This man deserves to lose. #debate

The yuggest debate of Trump’s life. #debate

Who Won Tonight’s VP Debate?

I haven’t done much debate coverage on this blog in awhile.  At one point, it was the most popular feature of this blog – my debate analysis and live Twitter feed.  So, tonight, I make this blog great again…

I was not disappointed in tonight’s debate.  It was much better than how the two on the top of the ticket last week did.  What was disappointing was Tim Kaine.  Coming into this debate, I genuinely respected the man.  He seemed reasonable and level-headed.  Yet, tonight, he came off as a little weasel.  He kept interrupting (a complaint I made about Trump last week) and kept repeating clearly rehearsed lines of attack.  He was impatient and just annoying.

However, Kaine was at his best when going after Trump’s “insult-driven campaign.”  Governor Pence was left speechless.  But, what can you really say?  Trump’s childish insults simply cannot be defended.  The more Kaine went after him on this, the more points he put up on the board.

That being said, the clear winner of this debate was Mike Pence.  The governor was calm, cool and collected.  Dare I say it?  He looked presidential.  He swatted down Kaine’s overly-rehearsed attack lines with a simple dismissal.

Pence was at his best at the end of the night speaking of his faith, showing respect for Senator Kaine’s beliefs but, most of all, standing firm on life.  Governor Pence is clearly pro-life and a champion for the unborn.  I have to respect that.

Will it be a game-changer?  Probably not, but it may get some conservatives off the fence who have been looking for a reason to vote for Trump.  But, it won’t be enough change the course of the campaign.

Below are my live-tweets from the debate.  Read from the bottom to the top.

Thank you, @mike_pence for standing firm on life. Notice @timkaine would not defend partial birth or HIllay’s stance on the Hyde Amendment.

If I were @mike_pence I’d say, “Shh, Tim. Take a breath. Count to ten. You’ll get your chance to quote your rehearsed lines.” #VPDebate

Gov @mike_pence – keep asking the question – do you take deductions? Don’t let him ignore it. You’ve got him on this! #VPDebate

Clearly @timkaine scored some clear points going after Trump’s insults. @mike_pence is left silent. What can you say? #VPDebate

So @mike_pence can’t defend Trump’s insults and so goes after comments @HillaryClinton apologized for. #VPDebate

Now I’m ready for the debate!

I wish @timkaine would answered the question – do you pay more taxes than you need to? #VPDebate

Clearly @GovPenceIN is looking the most presidential here. @timkaine just seems to be trying too hard. #VPDebate

Kaine is the Trump of this debate, can’t wait to interrupt. Trying to play Joe @JoeBiden maybe? #VPDebate

Both these guys sound ridiculous defending the trustworthiness of their candidates – can’t do it without attacking the other guy. #VPDebate

Gov @mike_pence wins the battle of the receding hairline against @timkaine #VPDebate

I guess Tim Kaine has home field advantage tonight. #VPDebate