Douglas Andrews / October 16, 2020

A Tale of Two Town Halls

Biden gets softballs and smooches, Trump gets hardballs and hostility.

There were two presidential town halls last night, and each adhered to the Leftmedia’s script. On ABC, Joe Biden enjoyed one cupcake after another from fraudulent news anchor and former Clinton-era flack George Stephanopoulos, while on NBC, Donald Trump was waterboarded by a fake-smiling Savannah Guthrie.

The Wall Street Journal’s James Freeman teed up the ABC event yesterday afternoon when he wondered whether Stephanopoulos would “invite the Democrat to opine on the New York Post — or demand that he come clean about his family’s influence business.”

Yeah, right.

As if Stephanopoulos and his fellow ABC News lickspittles had that kind of integrity. Sure enough, the Clinton Foundation megadonor failed to ask a single question about the Post’s bombshell story from just a day prior. Nor did he present a single query into the Obama-era enrichment activities of Joe Biden’s crack-smoking, influence-peddling deadbeat dad of a son.

Instead, the 90-minute softball session featured 10 or so questions from audience members, both “Republicans” and Democrats, about Biden’s COVID-19 response and vaccine positions, his views on racial injustice, and fracking. Biden did admit that his 1994 crime bill, which disproportionately affected blacks, was a mistake. And one questioner did ask him whether President Trump deserved credit for the relatively peaceful state of the world. His answer: “A little, but not a lot. America first has made America alone.”

What kind of questions might an honest journalist have asked? Oh, some of these for starters, including one about his chumminess with segregationists, and one about his uncanny ability to have been “wrong on nearly every major foreign policy and national security issue over the past four decades,” as Barack Obama’s former defense secretary put it. Instead, bupkis.

As for President Trump’s town hall on Trump-hating NBC, what were we to expect? “Moderator” Guthrie behaved with hostility and bias throughout, and her toothy smile seemed at all times forced.

The president was on his game though, despite Guthrie’s obvious animus. He appeared comfortable and in command.

As the Washington Examiner’s James Antle reports, “In a testy exchange, Guthrie peppered Trump with questions about white supremacy and QAnon. He replied that he did denounce white supremacy, that he knew nothing about QAnon, and he demanded to know why no one asked Biden to denounce antifa.”

Antle continued, “Trump’s event still frequently had the tone of a debate and was at times heated. ‘I know you, I knew you’d do this,’ Trump said to Guthrie at one point. Guthrie asked Trump to take 30 seconds to justify why he deserved a ‘second chance. He replied, 'Because I’ve done a great job.’” Classic Trump.

Perhaps the most interesting news to come out of these dueling town halls, though, will have nothing to do with the events themselves but everything to do with the relative support and intensity of each candidate’s voters: namely, the ratings game. Biden and Trump were on air at the same time last night, but which candidate do we suppose drew the larger audience share?

That’s a rhetorical question.

As for Scranton Joe’s slippery non-answer to the straightforward question of court-packing, Stephanopoulos actually pressed him, albeit gently. Biden said he’d let us know before we vote. (Big of him!) Of course, tens of millions of us have already voted, and tens of millions more of us will have done so by the time he gets around to leveling with us.


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