The two presidential candidates getting the most attention right now are likely to implode before Christmas, given the current rate of revelations of their true characters and past conduct....
First is Hillary Clinton. A country that would seriously consider the presidential candidacy of Clinton - whom a rising mountain of irrefutable evidence shows to be a serial prevaricator and likely lawbreaker without any record of achievement other than having survived an epic public humiliation at the hands of her husband - is in serious trouble.
Equally troubling is the Republican Party's current love affair with Donald Trump, a serial bankrupt whose flamboyance, bombast, and personal life resembles former Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi.
Right now Americans get to enjoy the public disarticulation of Clinton and "The Donald's" public dressing-down of the political class - both are richly deserved.
But at the debate, it was the less flamboyant players who were the most interesting...
These Candidates Should Drop Out
In the context of these two elephants currently overshadowing the rest of those who have undertaken the game of Russian Roulette known as running for President of the United States, last night's Republican presidential debate told us little that we didn't know about any of the candidates.
What the debate did tell us is that a number of the candidates should drop out, while others should abandon their misogynistic and otherwise retrograde views on a number of issues important to the American electorate, unless the party wants to help the Democrats retain the White House.
From the second-tier candidates (in terms of current poll numbers and exclusion from the first debate), names like Pataki, Santorum, Jindal, Graham, and Gilmore should drop out and stop wasting everyone's money and time. The only member of this group with a political future is Jindal, but he is not ready for prime time despite his considerable accomplishments as Governor of Louisiana and formidable intellect.
In contrast, Carly Fiorina deserves a seat at the big table not only for her performance last night, but also for her strong and consistent showing since she declared her candidacy. While she is unlikely to be on the ticket next November, she has positioned herself for an important cabinet post and is as impressive as any of the big name candidates.
Of the candidates in the main event last night, Donald Trump clearly did himself the most damage with his nasty and misogynistic response to Megyn Kelly's question regarding his history of demeaning remarks to women.
Of course, one could interpret Kelly's question as an effort to unseat Trump early in the process since his "women problem" is sufficiently large to disqualify him from serious consideration as the Republican nominee. His defense of his four corporate bankruptcies and his false claim that he is worth $10 billion were also fairly pathetic.
Bombast is unimpressive after the first or second time, and last night we saw that as a presidential candidate, the Donald is all flash and no cash. It is always refreshing, I suppose, to hear someone call the current administration stupid and incompetent, but stating the obvious without posing serious alternatives doesn't a serious candidate make.
But These Candidates Are Electable
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Prominent money manager. Has built top-ranked credit and hedge funds, managed billions for institutional and high-net-worth clients. 29-year career.