Trump and his supporters are trying to twist the discussion into a debate on Fox and not a critique of Trump. Trump was given two fabulous opportunities and frankly he blew both of those opportunities. A Reagan or a Fiorina would have turned those questions into sound bites they would have been able to play in future campaign ads. But, neither Reagan nor Fiorina ever viewed themselves as a victim.
The first opportunity Trump blew was when he was asked about four of his companies going bankrupt. What an opportunity to talk about this great country of America being a land where people who strive to do big things but have bad luck are able to try again. There is story after story of great American figures who did not have success on certain ventures and came back to do great things. General George Washington is certainly one of those people. Washington lost many battles in the Revolutionary War but he learned from his mistakes and eventually met with General Cornwallis to accept the surrender of the British.
Abraham Lincoln lost the senate race against Stephen Douglas only to come back and win the Presidency. If Lincoln had not had that American spirit of never give up, our nation might not be united today. Trump could have explained how it is his goal, having learned from misfortune, to preserve that can do spirit that has built this country.
He had an even better opportunity to turn around the perception that he is a part of the war on women. He could have moved beyond the question explaining that those terms that were assigned to him when speaking about women are not his true view of women. If we do not believe him we could check with his company where he has many women on his payroll throughout all levels of his company. He could have went on to say that in the Trump Companies, all people are treated equally regardless of gender, race, or creed and performance is the factor that governs opportunity and reward unlike the White House who pays women at a lower pay scale than men. Trump could have closed his comments by complimenting Megyn Kelly on fighting any gender bias in the news industry and rising to the pinnacle of her chosen field based on her ability of not only being fair but also being tough.
If Trump had taken those questions and given a statesman answer, the discussion today would be about the softball questions that were thrown at him. A victim would take the road Trump did and then accuse the questioner. A statesman would have answered those questions as above and raised his stature with those who support him and oppose him.
I hope Trump will learn from this experience just as I would hope he learned from the brief setbacks he had in his business life.