SAINT LOUIS, Mo. – Do you believe in miracles? You may need to start after last night’s debate at St. Louis’ Washington University.
It was there that Republican presidential nominee Donald J. Trump, embattled in recent days by an 11 year-old video tape which surfaced on Friday that showed the then-reality television star conversion in a lewd manner about various women, fought has way out of a political corner by doing what no other Republican has been able to do in the last three decades: take the wood to the Clinton’s.
Several key exchanges in the debate proved Mr. Trump to be the better candidate last night, the most important of which was when Mr. Trump forced out on his own with no help from moderators CNN’s Anderson Cooper and ABC News’ Martha Raddatz: when Trump said he would appoint a special and independent prosecutor to investigate Hillary Clinton and her now infamous email scandal.
Mr. Trump held his own through six straight questions with which Ms. Raddatz and others peppered him, opening the debate about the aforementioned video him using lewd language with former President George H.W. Bush’s nephew Billy Bush; then when Mrs. Clinton brought up the birther questions again, trying to force that into the conversation, Mr. Trump pounced.
After detailing how it is actually she who owes President Obama an apology because she started the birther narrative (it’s been proven that longtime Clinton ally Sidney Blumenthal pushed the story back in the 2008 campaign, as did at least two people on Clinton’s campaign) Mr. Trump shifted the conversation to questions about her emails.
“But when you talk about apology, I think the one that you should really be apologizing for and the thing that you should be apologizing for are the 33,000 e-mails that you deleted, and that you acid washed, and then the two boxes of e-mails and other things last week that were taken from an office and are now missing,” Mr. Trump said, before dropping the mega-bomb: a special prosecutor to independently investigate Clinton.
Mr. Trump said:
“And I’ll tell you what. I didn’t think I’d say this, but I’m going to say it, and I hate to say it. But if I win, I am going to instruct my attorney general to get a special prosecutor to look into your situation because there has never been so many lies, so much deception. There has never been anything like it, and we’re going to have a special prosecutor.”
Mr. Trump added:
“When I speak, I go out and speak, the people of this country are furious. In my opinion, the people that have been long-term workers at the FBI are furious. There has never been anything like this, where emails…and you get a subpoena, you get a subpoena, and after getting the subpoena, you delete 33,000 emails, and then you acid wash them or bleach them, as you would say, very expensive process. So we’re going to get a special prosecutor, and we’re going to look into it because you know what? People have been…their lives have been…destroyed for doing one-fifth of what you’ve done. And it’s a disgrace. And honestly, you ought to be ashamed of yourself.”
After Mrs. Clinton accused Mr. Trump of “lies” without detailing any, and as Ms. Raddatz attempted to intervene to save her, she implored the so-called “fact checkers” for help.
“It’s just awfully good that someone with the temperament of Donald Trump is not in charge of the law in our country,” she added.
In response, Mr. Trump fired back his most aggressive and bold comeback line in American political history:
“Because you’d be in jail.”
The audience roared with a mixture of applause and laughter. Mr. Clinton, could only manage a menacing glare in response.
There were many other moments throughout the debate—from exchanges on Obamacare to more about refugees to dealing with Russia and Syria and even campaign finance—and Mr. Trump defeated Mrs. Clinton on all of them. After the moderators could not stump Mr. Trump in the opening, and he steamrolled ahead in the early momentum, she couldn’t catch a break all night.
Mr. Trump’s debate victory, which comes after a rough first debate performance with Mrs. Clinton back on September 26, an eternity ago in this race, and Indiana Gov. Mike Pence’s win last Tuesday in Virginia in the vice presidential debate against Sen. Tim Kaine (D-VA), puts perhaps the roughest stretch of his campaign behind him.
“It was an absolute home run for Mr. Trump,” Jason Miller, Trump’s senior communications adviser, “This was a game-changing victory. You know what? The underdog is back.”