Tonight’s the night! Trump vs. Clinton at Hofstra University

It’s on! Hillary Clinton takes on Donald Trump tonight in the first presidential debate, which many expect will be a bloodbath, with no end of mudslinging and low blows by both candidates. Stuck moderating tonight is Lester Holt.

Here is my take on what will happen. They will have their debate, and once it is over everyone will trip over themselves talking about how Hillary won the debate, and how energetic and healthy she looked on stage, and how excellent her command of the issues was compared to Trump, and so on.

And then everyone will be surprised days from now when polls move in Trump’s direction! Why is this going to happen? Because this is exactly how  it has played out before, debate after debate, during this entire campaign. It never mattered how good his opponents did in these debates; it never mattered what insults Trump hurled or what outrageous statements he made, or whether the audience booed him, or even whether he showed up for these debates at all. Trump still won in the end, because no matter how good his opponents looked, it was Trump’s message that was always in tune with what people “out there” are thinking in America.

Keep this backdrop in mind when you listen to all the post-debate analysis tonight — I’m certain the pundits will end up looking silly in the end. Unfortunately, I can’t tune in this whole spectacle tonight, I have to be at a city council meeting.