Well, I watched the whole damn thing (or at least I lay in bed with my eyes closed and listened to it, or rather I listened to most of it – my wife listened to all of it but there were times when I just had to get out of the room for a while.) What is my takeaway aside from the fact that I am cross-eyed with the lack of sleep? It is simple: Biden won big. Why do I say that? Because he did not lose. He is solidly ahead in all of the polls. Trump needed to change the dynamic of the race and he failed to do that. I predict that in the days to come we will see very little in the way of changes in the polls. At the moment roughly 1.6 million votes have been cast. By the time the next debate is scheduled to occur, it is estimated that 30 million votes will have been cast. The major threat is not a late October move by Trump but instead a legal and extralegal assault on the legitimacy of the vote ending up, or so Trump hopes, in the Supreme Court. Here I’m going out on a limb, but I doubt that a majority of the Justices would vote to overturn a clear Biden victory. Since I lived through the Bush Gore fiasco, this is more an expression of my native optimism than a solid judgment based on precedent. Happily, the Biden campaign is well aware of this threat and is doing what it can to prepare for it.
We were incredibly lucky last night that Trump put on the show that he did. Biden was a mediocre debater when you could hear him and if he had been faced by a serious and well-prepared opponent he might have come off quite badly but that did not happen.
Thirty-four days to go.