During NBC’s Commander-in-Chief forum on Wednesday night, Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump faced off for the first time. While they were interviewed separately, that did not stop them from attacking each others proposals during their conversation with moderator Matt Lauer. Clinton was interviewed first by Lauer, and she spoke about her qualifications saying that she believes that a strong commander-in-chief is “an absolute rock steadiness and mixed with strength to be able to make the hard decisions. I’ve had the unique experience of watching and working with several presidents, and these are not easy decisions.”
Clinton was asked about a wide variety of topics including her support of the Iraq war, the decision to intervene in Libya, the Iran nuclear agreement, her proposal to end the Veterans Affairs backlog, and her plan to defeat ISIS. She demonstrated her strength as a policy wonk by being able to clearly outline her policy proposals. However, Clinton was defensive as she fielded questions from the audience about her judgement and faced questions from Lauer about her emails and her handling of classified materials. Audience members asked some tough questions and some of Clinton’s answers were indirect.
Overall, the forum was a preview of what is come later this month and Clinton and Trump face off in their first debate on September 26. While the forum has received mixed reviews, Clinton clearly demonstrated her knowledge of the issues, but she needs to work on convincing the American public that she is trustworthy. During Trump’s portion of the forum, he made a number of claims that prompted several responses from Clinton’s campaign. Each of Hillary for America’s releases can be read HERE, and a replay of the forum is below.
Update (9/9/2016): Hillary for America has released the following video featuring some of Trump’s comments from the forum.