Donald Trump’s worst brought out Hillary Clinton’s best.
The finest moments in her entire political life came in the last debate when, clad in white like an avenging angel, she slew the Donald dragon for his sexism, stood up unapologetically for all women and schooled us men about the right and wrong way to behave toward women.
Clinton’s answer on abortion was free of the too-frequent two-steps forward, one-step backing-and-forthing you hear from most pro-choice politicians. She was clear and strong: it should be the woman’s decision. Period.
She did it again when she flayed Trump for the way he treats and talks about women:
“Donald thinks belittling women makes him bigger. He goes after their dignity, their self-worth, and I don’t think there is a woman anywhere who doesn’t know what that feels like.”
In those two moments, Clinton ceased to be the cautious, ever-calculating and sometimes clunky campaigner we often see. She was genuine, sincere and passionate. She was real.
But there’s another reason history will remember the three debates as decisive for Clinton. For four and a half long hours, she stood up to Trump’s constant efforts to bait, bully and belittle her.
It was exhausting just to watch. Imagine having to stand there and go toe to toe with that lying fool, with 70 million people watching, for four and a half hours.
Clinton didn’t just survive it. She dominated it. She never lost her cool. She never snapped. In fact, she baited him. She got him off script. She did what 16 Republican opponents couldn’t do. She beat him.
Her performance in the debates proved that Clinton has the stamina AND temperament it takes to be President. She showed she has the cool head and steady hand we need in a dangerous and unpredictable world.
It’s a lesson that surely isn’t lost on Trump’s pal Putin.