Former Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton wasn't tasked with debating Donald Trump on Tuesday, Sept. 29, as she was four years ago, but she still has some thoughts on the matter. Clinton tuned in to the first presidential debate between President Donald Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden on Tuesday, Sept. 29, and while the night should have been a civilized policy debate, President Trump's frequent interruptions made it nearly impossible to stick to the issues. While watching the all too familiar scene, Hillary Clinton's tweet about the first 2020 presidential debate is a callback to how she was really feeling during the 2016 presidential debates.
The first debate's docket set by moderator Fox News host Chris Wallace included the response to the coronavirus pandemic, the economy, law enforcement, and climate change, but more often than not the debate was a painful, unproductive watch. Personal attacks, interruptions, and incessant arguing, often incited by Trump derailed the debate, almost at the outset. Biden first handled Trump's interruptions by laughing it off before he finally told Trump: "Will you shut up, man?" The curt ask came as Trump interrupted Biden during his response to a question about the Supreme Court.
Writer and lawyer, Jill Filipovic, tweeted about Biden's response to Trump's interruptions. "'Will you shut up man,' is the line of the night," she wrote. "I so feel for Hillary right now because I’m positive she wanted to say that and couldn’t," said the second tweet.
Clinton responded to the tweet, writing, "You have no idea."
Clinton faced off with Trump during the 2016 presidential debates, and her response makes it clear she wanted to also tell her opponent to "shut up" when dealing with Trump's insults and interruptions. According to Vox, Trump interrupted Clinton 51 times during their first debate in 2016. Although the former U.S. secretary of state remained calm at the time, it appears Biden finally said what Clinton never got to.
Biden's "shut up" comment came less than 30 minutes into the debate as he was trying to respond to whether he would support ending the filibuster or packing the Supreme Court. His response was vague, but it appears he wants to leave it up to the voters. "The issue is, the American people should speak. You should go out and vote. You're in voting now. Vote, and let your senators know how strongly you feel," Biden said. Trump, meanwhile, was repeatedly talking over him, which incited Biden's "shut up" comment. When Trump kept talking, Biden called his behavior "unpresidential." As Wallace, attempted to end the segment, Trump continued to talk and Biden retorted, "Keep yapping, man."
As social media responded to a "dumpster fire" of a presidential debate, some people tweeted out sympathy for Clinton. In response to a tweet from Chasten Buttigieg, author and Pete Buttigieg's husband, Clinton took it as a chance to put out a call to action. Buttigieg wrote, "Has anyone checked in on @HillaryClinton? Girl I’m so sorry." She tweeted back, "Thanks, I'm fine. But everyone better vote."
While the first debate didn't set the bar too high, hopefully the next two presidential debates on Oct. 15 and Oct. 22 won't be as jarring. Whatever happens, you can likely count on Clinton to chime in from her perspective as the president's former opponent.
Disclosure: Hillary Clinton's son-in-law Marc Mezvinsky joined Social Capital, an investor in Bustle Digital Group, in mid 2017 and joined the Board of Bustle Digital Group in early 2018.