Donald Trump isn’t known for the generosity of his criticism. Typically, the GOP nominee approaches the task of commenting on a political rival’s oratory like a middle-school bully approaches the task of commenting on the teacher’s pet’s new braces. But on the morning after Hillary Clinton delivered her acceptance speech at the Democratic National Convention, Trump was oddly fair-minded in his assessment.
Very average! Moments later, Trump reiterated his view that Clinton’s speech was solidly mediocre.
Granted, the GOP nominee did implicitly criticize his female opponent for delivering her speech too loudly (which is a bit like Jeffrey Dahmer giving someone a hard time for eating non-free-range chicken). But one would expect a man who believes Clinton “created ISIS” and “needs to go to jail” to disparage her oratory in considerably harsher terms.
Perhaps Trump has decided to cultivate a new image as a fair-minded critic and will soon be referring to the Democratic nominee as “Could Be More Ethical (Although, Really, Who Am I to Say?) Hillary.”
If so, the tycoon still has a long way to go before establishing his credibility as an evenhanded commentator. In his campaign’s official response, Trump panned Clinton’s address as “a speech delivered from a fantasy universe, not the reality we live in today.” Which seems a tad harsh, coming from a man whose own acceptance speech promised that “the crime and violence that afflicts our nation” would “come to an end” the day he steps into the Oval Office.