Trump had a bad night

Phillip Klein:
Donald Trump was dismantled in Thursday night's debate in Detroit.

In the face of consistent fire from Sens. Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio and a tough line of questioning from Fox moderators, Trump struggled more than he has at any debate thus far.

The debate raised a number of doubts about Trump's trustworthiness, business practices and readiness to take on Hillary Clinton in the general election.

On his signature issue, Trump was forced to confirm that he would be flexible on immigration policy, and that he was "softening" his position on high-skilled immigrants.

He took heat from Rubio for employing foreign workers at his Florida hotel and manufacturing his clothing line overseas — a contrast with his campaign rhetoric of protecting the American worker.

Rubio also pointed out that whenever Trump is asked a detailed policy question, he resorts to insults to avoid the question, an attack that was reinforced as Trump repeatedly referred to his opponent as "little Marco."

After Trump claimed that he would balance the budget by eliminating the Environmental Protection Agency and the Department of Education, Fox's Chris Wallace interjected that those numbers didn't add up — that eliminating those departments even entirely would fall far short of eliminating the annual deficit. When Trump claimed he would make up the rest by negotiating drug prices with Medicare, Wallace pointed out that this wouldn't be enough either.

Megyn Kelly confronted Trump on his history of changing positions within days, including on the Afghanistan War and allowing in Syrian refugees.
His Trump University problems also posed difficult questions for him and Trump responded by saying that it would take years to resolve which gave Cruz an opening to launch on the uncertainty created by the situation.

Trump continues to rely on the post-seminar surveys for his defense in the questions raised about the program, but I find that rather meaningless when the survey was taken before the students even had a chance to use the material in the seminar in a real world environment.  It was not until they found the program did not work for them that they felt defrauded.


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