No one expected civility. However, the first Trump-Biden presidential debate was even more of an unholy mess than anyone imagined it could be. “Moderator” Chris Wallace got slammed across the board for barely stepping in as the two candidates crosstalked. News anchors are speechless and aghast, and even writers of bad movies feel one-upped. Over on Fox & Friends, the tide is actually turning against President Trump. It’s a particularly notable turn of events for a few reasons: (1) Obviously, Fox News generally sides with Trump on all things; (2) Fox & Friends‘ Steve Doocy recently went rogue on Trump while Brian Kilmeade acted completely shocked at his co-host’s stance.
Well, Kilmeade is disgusted by what transpired during the Trump-Biden showdown. He did call out Biden for being “rude” (with the “clown” thing), but he cannot believe that Trump didn’t seize the opportunity to distance himself from white supremacists. Instead, Trump told the far-right group known as the Proud Boys to “stand back and stand by” before insisting that “somebody’s got to do something about Antifa and the left.” Yikes.
“Trump ruined the biggest layup in the history of debates by not condemning white supremacists,” Kilmeade declared. “I don’t know if he didn’t hear it, but he’s gotta clarify that right away… Why the president didn’t just knock it out of the park, I’m not sure.”
Brian Kilmeade: "Donald Trump ruined the biggest layup in the history of debates by not condemning white supremists. I don't know if he didn't hear it, but he's gotta clarify that right away. … Why the president didn't just knock it out of the park, I'm not sure." pic.twitter.com/Qo52jBDTPl
— Bobby Lewis (@revrrlewis) September 30, 2020
It’s certainly a major misstep, and even Fox News co-hosts don’t want to be viewed as applauding a failure to distance from racists. As for the definition of what Trump said to the Proud Boys, Merriam-Webster wrote on Twitter that “stand back” means to “take a few steps backwards,” but “stand by” means “to be or to get ready to act.”