RB Social Studies teachers largely correct on Trump-Clinton debate predictions


Kenna Howorth, Staff Reporter

Before the first presidential debate this past Monday, Clarion approached teachers from the Social Studies department and asked to discuss their predictions and opinions about the coming debate. After the debate, many of their educated guesses were proven correct.

Dan Monahan, a U.S. Government and History teacher for over 20 years, was focused on the possibilities of negative attacks prior to the debate.

“Unfortunately, negative politicking works better and so I would guess the candidates will probably spend more time attacking each other rather than touting themselves for the issues that they stand for,” said Monahan.

The issues discussed in the debate varied from employment, taxes, race, national security, weapon control and were divided into the topics of America’s prosperity, security, and direction. However, the subject matter did quickly turn into criticizing the other candidate’s character.

“So what’s interesting is, I don’t think you’re going to see Trump making a lot of insensitive comments. I think the goal of Clinton’s people is to make him say things like that by getting under his skin,” said John Beasley, instructional coach for the Social Studies department.

Both candidates faced many obstacles, with Hillary trying to regain trust after the email scandal and Trump making less bombastic statements and opting for softer policies.

Fact-checking was very prominent in this debate due to Trump interjecting and questioning Clinton’s claims and the real-time Literally Trump fact-checking page that Hillary directed viewers to on her website.

“I think the more fact checking, the better. If our true desire is honest answers, I don’t think you can have enough fact checkers,” said teacher Mark Gouwens.

Although she has been accused of being dishonest in the past, Hillary Clinton admitted her errors in regards to the email scandal. She did not make any excuses and told American people that she made a mistake.

“Stop blaming other people, stop saying she’s ignorant, and say those were mistakes and say, ‘I screwed up,’” Beasley successfully predicted.

Monahan also addressed each candidate’s likely desire to create a quick, one-liner soundbyte.

“You want to have one of those kind of zinger moments that are positive for you and obviously negative for your opponent. People tend to remember one of those one-liners from a debate,”  Monahan said.

The most quotable moments that stick in American citizens’ minds are one way to determine who “wins” presidential debates. Both candidates had many, although CNN and other major network’s viewer polls are crediting Clinton with the win.

“Sadly for the American public, I think this is more about the entertainment value than the political substance,” Gouwens said.