Posted: 9:37 pm Thursday, October 6th, 2016
By Jamie Dupree
Donald Trump did something a bit different on Thursday night in New Hampshire, as he took questions from a very small, town-hall-type audience in the Granite State, but flatly told his audience it was not in any way an effort to get some practice before his next debate with Hillary Clinton on Sunday.
“This has nothing to do with Sunday,” Trump said several times at the Sandown Town Hall, even though he had a clock counting down from two minutes for each answer, which is the amount of time often allotted for answers in a Presidential debate.
Sunday’s debate format in St. Louis, Missouri is a town hall, where voters will ask the questions of the candidates.
Despite countdown clock, Trump mocks idea he was prepping tonight as "foolish. I’m here for one reason: I love the people of New Hampshire."
— Jill Colvin (@colvinj) October 7, 2016
Trump did a few town hall events right before the New Hampshire Primary – and even though he did just fine in that environment – his preferred mode of speaking to voters remains the giant rally.
In this event though, the voters wrote down their questions, and conservative Boston talk radio host Howie Carr then distilled them into queries for the GOP nominee – and added in a few jabs at the media as well.
“The Boston Globe is choking,” Carr said excitedly, as he helped Trump rattle off some good poll numbers for the Republican standard bearer.
The first question for Trump was why didn’t he go after Clinton even more in the first debate.
“I did hold back,” Trump said, arguing that the debates are for policy matters, not personal attacks.
“I didn’t like getting into the gutter,” Trump explained, saying those forums should be a “high level.”
“You kept it at a minute twenty,” Carr said of Trump’s first answer.
Trump made sure to bring up a number of different issues like trade, the economy, Clinton’s foreign policy credentials (“Do we have 24 hours to talk about failures?”) and more.
But Trump also emphasized this late addition to his campaign schedule had nothing to do with anything else.
“This has nothing to do with Sunday,” as Trump then lobbed a few barbs at his opponent over the debate.
“Do you really think that Hillary Clinton is debate prepping for 3 or 4 days?”
Hillary Clinton is resting,” Trump said to a few chuckles.
As Carr wrapped up the questions, he couldn’t resist one last item about an issue of great local interest.
Who will win the World Series? Donald Trump, in New Hampshire, doesn’t hesitate. “Of course it’s Boston."
— Matt Viser (@mviser) October 7, 2016
Sunday’s debate starts at 9 pm ET.
About the Author
Jamie Dupree is the Radio News Director of the Washington Bureau of the Cox Media Group and writes the Washington Insider blog. A native of Washington, D.C., Jamie has covered Congress and politics in the nation’s capital since the Reagan Administration, and has been reporting for Cox since 1989.