There are only three weeks left until our national election.
Thank God for small favors.
Tonight’s third presidential debate was as frustrating and upsetting as the previous two.
The candidates talked over each other, interrupted, refused to allow each other to finish thoughts.
As the debate went on, Republican presidential candidate Trump became increasingly angry and aggressive. As he had done in the first two debates, Trump resorted to name calling and finger pointing.
It was painful and exasperating to watch. The rudeness of the Republican candidate, combined with his nasty tone and his continual lying gave at least this observer a huge headache.
None of that was the worst part of tonight’s fight, though.
The worst moment, the most shocking and scary moment, came when moderator Chris Wallace asked Donald Trump directly about his claims of a rigged election. Wallace reminded Trump that one of the cornerstones of our American democracy has always been the peaceful transfer of power. He pointed out that Vice Presidential candidate Mike Pence has promised that they will accept the outcome of the election, no matter who wins.
Trump’s key surrogate and favorite child, daughter Ivanka, also promised to accept the results, and said that her father would do the same.
The moderator asked Trump if he would make the same promise on the air.
Trump’s answer was chilling. He said:
“I will look at it at the time.”
There was a gasp throughout the room, even though the crowd had been told to remain silent throughout.
Chris Wallace pressed Trump, asking him if he truly meant that he was unwilling to state his acceptance of the outcome of an American election. Trump repeated himself, saying:
“I’ll look at it at the time. I’m not looking at anything now. I’ll look at it at the time. What I’ve seen, what I’ve seen is so bad. First of all the media is so dishonest and so corrupt and the pile on is so amazing and the New York Times actually wrote an article about it and they don’t even care. They’ve poisoned the minds of the voters…”
Trump did not say what he might do if he does not accept the results of the election, but the specter of violence hangs over all of us now as the vote approaches.
Featured image by Michael Vadon via Flickr. Available through Creative Commons Attribution Share-Alike Generic license 2.0