On short notice, Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump announced that he was going to hold a town hall meeting answering questions from a small audience in battleground New Hampshire as a “dry run” for the second presidential debate which is just a few days away.
After a collosal loss in the first presidential debate — a fact that even many of his closest advisors acknowledge privately — the campaign was finally able to convince Trump to prepare for the second debate. The details of how and when Trump has been preparing have been sparse, but he has been preparing.
On Wednesday, the campaign announced that he would do a town hall in New Hampshire as a “dry run” for the debate. By all accounts, Trump has not been doing any mock debates. Therefore, the Thursday event was the closest thing to a mock debate as he is going to do before Sunday.
As the town hall meeting approached, some details of the format emerged, each of which seemed to differ from the format of the event on Sunday. The audience was going to be handpicked from Trump supporters. In fact, the event took place in Sandown, a Republican town. The event on Sunday is entirely going to be undecided voters.
The audience on Thursday would not be allowed to actually ask their questions. Instead, questions would be written on a card and read to Trump by the moderator, a conservative talk show host. At Sunday’s town hall, members of the audience will be asking their questions and the candidates have to answer those audience members directly. The moderator is CNN’s Anderson Cooper — not a conservative — who will also be able to ask his own questions plus follow up questions.
Trump walked out some 40 minutes late to his New Hampshire town hall in order to create more anticipation in the audience, something typically done in live shows. There will be no such delay for Sunday’s event.
Trump began his New Hampshire town hall by making a stump speech — not even one from a teleprompter. There will be no stump speech on Sunday. And Trump did not stick to his two minute time limit, instead choosing to meander endlessly at times continuing his speech to the audience at large.
The only similarity that Trump’s New Hampshire event had to the one that will take place on Sunday is that it was small. That is hardly a “dry run” for Sunday.
Hopefully, the event is not indicative of the prep that the candidate is doing. Cause what he put on full display — and he can be assured that Hillary Clinton and her team were watching intently — was a disaster.
You can watch the entire train wreck below (Trump enters at 55:00):
The thoughts and opinions expressed here are those of the contributor and do not necessarily reflect the opinion of Citizen Slant.