Watching both townhalls

-refused to denounce QAnon
-says his RT of bin Laden conspiracy is đź‘Ť
-refuses to say he won’t claim elex rigged, spreads disinfo
-references Russian campaign agst Biden as important
-claims Obama spied on him despite failure to find any evidence
That’s minute 20

It’s a firehose of angry falsehoods, and I’m not going to post more

He’s angry and combative

Biden is engaging and gracious and informed
Ok sigh

POTUS says his $421mil foreign debt doesn’t matter. Like a mortgage, no biggie 🙄
Pivots to usual nonsense about IRS demons and his actual massive wealth that no one has ever seen

Honestly who believes any of this
Both candidates answering Supreme Court questions at same time

Biden open to “considerations” if Barrett confirmed to court. He says how the Rs handle it should be the focus now.

Trump using “oh they were so mean to kavanaugh now we can do whatever we want” argument.
Biden gets a good question about “avoiding revenge” after Trump’s “toxic rule”. He emphasizes bipartisanship, working across aisle. Says “vindictiveness of a president” isn’t a good thing.
Trump dodging any coherence on Roe v Wade. Lots of wordstuff. Blech.

NBC has POTUS sitting in front of a lady nodding yes to whatever he says and it’s irritating.
Lady says Trump is so handsome when he smiles 🤢 , asks him hard immigration question, which he can’t answer so just saying words.

Tries to blame his anti-immigration stance on pandemic which is just a flat lie. Of course relapses to “crime and rapists” line
I was not impressed by the range of audience questions chosen by NBC tbh
Biden giving coherent, detailed answer on where fracking fits in a broader energy strategy to get to zero carbon. Mentions fracking destabilizes crust of the earth (basically). It’s a great answer. Now talking about need for better energy grids and transmission, plus micro grids
Biden gets a question on foreign policy, the framing of which makes it clear the questioner is very pro-Trump. He is immediately disappointed joe doesn’t agree Trump is magical. Biden gives a strong answer re global leadership and alliances and eroded security. Guy is annoyed.
Biden raises Belarus, regional issues. Biden’s answer is very respectful, but says Trump has no coherent plan. (Truth)

Mentions importance of international organizations and agreements.
Biden gets a question on Trump admin attacks on transgendered Americans/LGBTQ issues. Biden says laws must be changed to ensure these protections under the law are clear. Mentions attacks/murders on trans women of color.
Biden giving a conversational answer about what he will do if he loses — go be a professor, keep working, bring more equality, keep expanding rights of Americans.
What will it say if you lose, host asks. “It may say I’m not a very good candidate,” Biden says. But he hopes it doesn’t say we have given up on American unity.

It’s a very candid answer.
Biden avoided, repeatedly, taking swipes at Trump supporters or saying we are lost or close to the abyss. At times, he even seemed to be calling out Ds in Senate for being less collegial than they could be in suspecting the motivations of Senate Rs.

He’s serious about unity
Probably nobody will be happy about this. But maybe, just maybe, @JoeBiden can turn down the temperature enough that we can all return to a lower activation energy and accomplish real things instead of just living in the churn all the time.
Biden still answering questions even though townhall is over. ABC audience had great questions.
Still answering.
Still answering.
Oh this answers the thing about the nodding woman.

I hate that many TV townhalls aren’t really randos but carefully selected professional “voters”.

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More from @MollyMcKew

16 Oct
It’s truly hilarious watching conservatives lose their minds about the “repression of conservative speech on Facebook and Twitter” because they seem to have forgotten that Donald Trump is only president because of Facebook and Twitter.
Oh, are they finally ready to stop clowning in hearings and wasting time asking about bullshit conspiracies and Alex Jones and whatever, and actually show up to real hearings about how to regulate this nightmare? Cool. They weren’t before when social was the lifeblood of Trump.
Yes, let’s have an adult conversation about the nightmarish power of these platforms, which we in part have come to understand because they helped make Trump president and act as his conduit for comms every day. Let’s talk about social control and behavioral influence.
Read 4 tweets
16 Oct
Some updates from the covid townhall in my dad’s county in Idaho (which is like the one blue-ish county). I wonder how representative this is of other places that are less transparent and responsibly-led.

Current number of cases higher than in early months of serious spike
This is a resort area, so there’s great sensitivity to the “keep the economy open” idea, bc otherwise the whole area is toast

Emergency room lead says it’s bad enough to “only do essential errands, & if someone walks into where you are without a mask, leave. Leave immediately.”
The only hospital in the county is full. So are the neighboring ones. They don’t have options on airlifting people out because to where? No one knows.

Lots of questions on testing. There’s only one lab doing the processing in Idaho so it’s slow.
Read 10 tweets
11 Oct
I love this story, @MrJonCryer!

Here’s my mom’s:

She had a beautiful but modest diamond wedding ring (the diamond was a gorgeous cut) because she & dad got married when they were grad students.

Dad always wanted to get her a new one later on, but she loved it, said no /1
35 yrs later, it was an awful winter in Ohio, feet of snow, ice everywhere, everything covered in road salt in that unnecessary Ohio way

She stopped to get gas in the blowing snow, looks down, realizes the diamond has just fallen out of its setting—onto the salt-strewn ground /2
It’s dark and wet, those terrible salmon-ish “low light pollution” light-post bulbs at the gas station, making everything on the ground look like dirty road salt.

She despairs, thinks she will never find the diamond. She looks around, nothing. Some other ladies help. Nothing. /3
Read 5 tweets
11 Oct
Look. Here’s how you do this:

“The Republican Party is rushing to establish a Supreme Court whose base views will be wildly out of alignment with the views of American voters on key issues by overriding the opinions of those voters to get it done before the election...
... This is the next step in a decades-long strategy by the GOP to control, manipulate, and subvert institutions and processes that will give them disproportionate influence to their percentage of support in America. We know this can’t be how our democracy works...
...I won’t apologize for defending the idea that the vote of every American should count a much as the vote of every other American. There are a lot of things we need to do to ensure this ideal. In the coming decades, we will face unparalleled, accelerated change ...
Read 4 tweets
10 Oct
We need to pull out of this tailspin of the self-fulfilling prophecy of political violence during and after the election before it is too late.

We can start by understanding what “sow discord” really means.

My new piece for @SURfdn #defusingdisinfo /1…
The motivations for trumpism are hard to pin down—fleeting, hyper-individualized, sometimes sounding as much far-left as far-right

A rejection of all systems, the embrace of the view that the center cannot hold, so why not accelerate the fragmentation, or at least not stop it /2
There’s this idea of the coming need to defend some core set of beliefs by force.

Fight who? The answer isn’t clear. Whoever. Other Americans.

But why? For what? Not to build something, win something. Just to defend what you have through a time of inevitable unraveling. /3
Read 27 tweets
9 Oct
I’m really stuck on this thing where FoxNews refused to cover the most significant story of the day—the most significant domestic terrorism plot *in years*—in prime time because it doesn’t fit the editorial narrative they are using to mindf*ck Americans toward political violence
It’s unconscionable what they are KNOWINGLY DOING to America by manipulating perceptions of reality.
I’m going outside to write, but in case you were wondering, so far this AM Fox & Friends have leaned heavy on hurricane coverage & “court packing” to avoid the Michigan story, with segments on one homeowner in Wisconsin “confronting” (non-white) protesters, and a cookbook. Really
Read 7 tweets

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