The run-up to the first TV debate between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump has been marked by some of the bitterest exchanges between US presidential rivals of modern times. The much-anticipated first face-to-face encounter did produce some testy moments. Both candidates emerged sounding positive and claiming victory.
“We had a great debate,” Clinton declared to loud cheers from her supporters. “We were able to talk about what we want to do to get the economy to work for everybody, not just those at the top, what we’re gonna do to make it fairer, like raise the minimum wage, guarantee equal pay for women’s work.”
In brief initial comments to reporters after the event Trump claimed polls were giving him the edge:
“Hillary Clinton failed because she can’t bring it home, I mean, she just can’t bring it home and she’ll fail with jobs and she’ll fail all the way along the line and I think we’ve proved that tonight.
I thought we did very well. And I guess every online poll is indicating we did very well.”
But this was only round one and there is still much to play for before the next TV showdowns in Missouri and Nevada on October 9 and October 19 respectively. The extent to which the debates have influenced the battle for the White House will only become clear when the dust has settled after the final televised meeting.