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According to an article in this morning’s New York Times, Donald Trump’s advisers are hoping to prepare him “more rigorously” for his next showdown with Hillary—or, more to the point, they’re going to try to prepare him. Apparently, teaching Donald Trump to debate as almost as hard as getting an egomaniacal, coked-up toddler with a smartphone to sit still for five seconds. Or exactly as hard. Either way.

But first! Let’s find out how Donald Trump thinks he did:

While analysts from both parties and several focus groups declared Mrs. Clinton the winner of the debate, Mr. Trump tried to claim that title for himself on Tuesday, citing unscientific online surveys, and told his advisers that he believed he had done well in the first half-hour of the 90-minute event.


Of course he does! No surprise there. But unfortunately for his team, this also means that Trump’s advisors now need “to convince him that he can do better than he did in the first one.” Convincing Trump to do anything sounds like a nightmare of a task, but doubly so when your team consists of a “large number of voluble people” including “two retired military figures with no political background.”

On Trump’s study group from hell:

There were early efforts to run a more standard form of general election debate-prep camp, led by Roger Ailes, the ousted Fox News chief, at Mr. Trump’s golf course in Bedminster, N.J. But Mr. Trump found it hard to focus during those meetings, according to multiple people briefed on the process who requested anonymity to discuss internal deliberations. That left Mr. Ailes, who at the time was deeply distracted by his removal from Fox and the news media reports surrounding it, discussing his own problems as well as recounting political war stories, according to two people present for the sessions.

It’s just like The Breakfast Club, except everyone is 70, evil, and maybe sundowning.

Still, while his team of misfit assholes tried to train Trump to look for a dozen or so of Clinton’s tells, he “did not seem to pay attention during the practice sessions.” That doesn’t mean Trump’s aides and advisers think Clinton did so great herself, though, as most of them claimed that “Mrs. Clinton looked more polished than she was because of her opposition.”


Which is to say, of course Clinton came off okay, because our guy is a fucking idiot.

[The New York Times]

Ashley Feinberg used to work here.

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