Thursday, October 22, 2020




Donald Trump was interviewed for CBS 60 Minutes. Trump has released a video of the interview.

The interview can be used to assist preparation to provide a plan for either candidate to use in the Presidential debate tonight.

There are two audiences for a debate. First, there are the people who watch the whole thing (a subset of this audience consists of the news media and commentators on television and major newspapers).  Second would be the people who hear about the debate second hand.


People who watch the whole debate are impressed (more or less in this order) by the candidate who

  1. ·       has the best line or two;
  2. ·       is the most likeable;
  3. ·       is the strongest, most presidential;
  4. ·       does the best job of refuting the other candidates’ attacks;
  5. ·       does the best job of describing their own positions and benefits to the country;
  6. ·       does the best job of attacking their opponent.


People who hear about the debate second hand are influenced by 


In the interview President Trump showed that his approach consists of 


A potential strategy for Trump would be to be honest, thoughtful, strong but polite, and sensitive to those who have suffered in the pandemic.


A potential strategy for Biden (since Trump probably outlined his arguments in the interview, allowing Biden to be prepared for those or others like them) might be to

·       Use the time when Trump is muted to

o   QUICKLY refute the predictable attacks;

o   QUICKLY assert Trump’s responsibility for the COVID disaster in the US;

o   QUICKLY denounce Trump’s inability to take responsibility (for COVID & other things);

o   QUICKLY assert the Obama-Biden record for bringing the economy back and handing Trump a solid;

o   QUICKLY assert the Biden plan for dealing with the health crisis, the economy, the inequality;

o   STRONGLY demonstrate respect for those who have suffered from the pandemic, from racial injustice and from financial problems;

o   STRONGLY assert the need (more than ever!) for truth, equality, and health care (pointing out that Trump is either living in a bubble of unreality, or a cruel, self-

o   Be prepared to spontaneously and accurately react to a moderator’s question or a Trump statement in a short, memorable way.

·       Use the time when the microphones are not muted (and Trump is interrupting or lying) to

o   STRONGLY refute Trump’s accusations, and Trump’s boastful lies (and if necessary counterattack with the allegations of Trump's corruption, self-dealing, and unconstitutional behavior);

o   STRONGLY assert his own record and his plans;

o   STRONGLY focus on the need to deal with healthcare, equality, truth in government, equal justice for all, the environment, and more: all the things that a government should be doing for all the people.

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