The Republican's campaign alternately praised and blamed the moderator; insisted Trump went easy on Clinton out of respect to her family, and doubled down on his positions, such as his refusal to release his tax returns, that provided his Democratic opponent with her fruitful attacks.
All in all, Trump turned a 90-minute event that didn't go that well but wasn't fatal, into possibly a three-day spotlight on the key weaknesses jeopardizing his White House hopes.
It was a strategic blunder, some veteran campaign veterans concluded.
"48-hour window post-debate is often just as important as debate itself," tweeted Republican strategist Kevin Madden, who experienced both the highs and lows of post-debate as top communications advisor to Mitt Romney four years ago.He needed to demonstrate fitness.
Breathing fresh life into Clinton's attacks from the debate — on his treatment of women, how he's run his business, his refusal to release his tax returns, and role in promoting the "birther" conspiracy that President Obama wasn't eligible for the White House — undermines that goal.
Yet that's exactly what Trump did on Monday morning during an interview on Fox News, when he voluntarily defended against Clinton's attack that he once referred to an Hispanic Miss Universe candidate as overweight and "Miss Housekeeping."
The interview ensured that the clip from the debate, among Trump's worst moments, would get replayed all day on cable news, along side the celebrity billionaire trying to defend the indefensible.Andrew Couts and Austin Powell report at The Daily Dot:
Donald Trump supporters artificially manipulated the results of online polls to create a false narrative that the Republican nominee won the first presidential debate on Monday night.
The efforts originated from users of the pro-Trump Reddit community r/The_Donald and 4chan messaged boards, which bombarded around 70 polls, including those launched by Time, Fortune, and CNBC.