Viewers declare Clinton debate winner, though without a KO
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Viewers declare Clinton debate winner, though without a KO

Republican candidate Trump scores better than expected after second televised showdown, but 57% say Democrat came out on top

Stuart Winer is a breaking news editor at The Times of Israel.

Patrons in a bar watch the second presidential debate between US Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton and US Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump near Times Square in New York on October 9, 2016. (AFP/KENA BETANCUR)
Patrons in a bar watch the second presidential debate between US Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton and US Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump near Times Square in New York on October 9, 2016. (AFP/KENA BETANCUR)

Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton scored a resounding victory in Sunday night’s presidential debate according to a CNN poll published soon after the clash.

The CNN/ORC poll found that 57 percent of debate watchers felt Clinton won compared to just 34% for her rival Republican Donald Trump.

Trump went into the debate hoping to recover ground after his campaign took a hit with the publication by The Washington Post last week of a taped conversation from 2005 in which he was heard making lewd and offensive remarks about women and bragging that as a celebrity he was able to grope their genitals with impunity.

Nonetheless, 63% of those who watched the debate felt that Trump did better than expected, with 21% saying they thought he did worse. Regarding Clinton’s performance, 39% felt she did better than expected and 26% said she did worse.

Some 58% of those polled said they supported Clinton before the debate.

US Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton, right, and US Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump during the second presidential debate at Washington University, St. Louis, Missouri, October 9, 2016. (AFP/Robyn Beck)
US Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton, right, and US Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump during the second presidential debate at Washington University, St. Louis, Missouri, October 9, 2016. (AFP/Robyn Beck)

During the face-off in Washington University in St. Louis, the two candidates traded barbs and insults, with Clinton saying her opponent had shown himself to be “unfit” as commander-in-chief and Trump accusing her of lying and and being filled with hate.

The CNN poll sampled 537 registered voters who watched the debate and had a margin of error of plus or minus four percentage points.

A similar post-debate poll from the YouGov website that sampled 812 registered voters found opinions much closer, with Clinton thought to be the winner by 47% to Trump’s 42%.

Among undecideds, Clinton was also ahead (44%) of Trump (41%). Those who took part in the survey said Clinton seemed “more presidential” (57% than the Republican (31%).

Both candidates have accused each other of not being suitable to serve as president, Clinton focusing on Trump’s previous declarations that have offended minority groups and women, and Trump pointing to Clinton’s breach of security by using a private email server when she was secretary of state.

Among women, 50% thought Clinton won compared to 38% for Trump, the YouGov poll found. Among men, 46% gave the debate to Trump and 43% to Clinton.

After the first presidential debate on September 26, a CNN poll found 62% saw Clinton as the victor.

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