Trump debates well, but is unlikely to move the needle

Trump debates well, but is unlikely to move the needle, by Paul Mirengoff. About “accepting” the results of an election:

If, when Trump says he’ll consider his options after the votes are in, he is thinking about perhaps declaring himself president or trying to stage a coup, then Hillary Clinton is right to be horrified. We all should be.

If Trump means he might not formally concede, then he’s contemplating being a very bad loser. To not concede would run counter to a salutary custom, but there is no requirement that losing candidates concede. Not conceding would cast Trump in a bad light, but would hardly threaten the Republic.

If by possibly not accepting the election Trump means he might vigorously argue that it was “rigged” against him — e.g., the media was horribly biased and large numbers of illegal immigrants voted — this would be nothing more than Trump expressing his opinions. The only issue then should be whether Trump’s opinions are valid. If Trump is correct that he was the victim of unprecedented media bias and or voter fraud, then he would be doing America a favor by pointing these things out.

The mainstream media and other Clinton supporters are trying to insulate themselves from criticism over bias and fraud by demonizing Trump. But Trump should not be demonized if all he’s contemplating is arguing that the election wasn’t fair — i.e., refusing to accept that the election he lost was a fair one — as long as he can provide evidence to back his argument up. …

As for the debate, there were fewer fireworks than I had expected. For the most part, the candidates debated the issues in an almost civilized manner.  …

Wallace … for the most part, did a good job tonight.

Debate highlights: