About 30 Grady High School students who are involved in the school’s championship speech and debate team watched closely and took notes Monday night as Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump dueled over who is best fit to be the next president of the United States.
So who did the students think did the better job?
Three students raised their hands for Trump. One was undecided. The rest chose Clinton.
“She remained more composed and was the more respectful person,” said Kassidy Kelley, 17, a senior.
Sophia Rivard, 16, a junior, concluded Clinton used more fact-based data and her arguments were better constructed. Most students also felt Trump used fewer specifics.
One student argued Trump did better than expected, comparing him to Sarah Palin’s 2008 vice presidential debate performance. Another student said he thought Trump won because he felt Clinton inappropriately attacked him first.
Trump “stayed on topic most of the debate,” said Danny Lazega, a senior.
“What debate were you watching?,” a female classmate muttered.
Most of the student panned moderator Lester Holt’s performance, saying he didn’t keep the candidates focused on answering the questions.
Although nearly all of the students are too young to vote in this election, many described the debate as a memorable experience.
“I think 50 years from now, teachers will be talking about this election,” said Sam Lombardo, 17, a senior. “We’re witnessing history.”
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