1. Unlike in the primary debates, Trump did not score any own goals (except for his eye-rolling about the vibrancy of the Black church, which cemented Her status as the Black candidate).
2. Clinton’s attacks were numerous and brilliant. She had a pile of single-use steel steak knives lined up in her drawer to use against Trump, and she used most of them. I’ve always said Hillary’s a good debater, ever since I saw one of the Sanders-Clinton debates just under a year ago. I’ve always said Trump wasn’t a good debater. Trump wasn’t a bad debater here. Hillary was just a good debater.
3. Clinton used fear tactics far more effectively than Trump. Trump had a decent number of medium-grade counter-attacks and attacks, but nothing like Her attacks on “raysism, misoginy, HE WANTS TO START A NUCLEAR WAR, EVERYBODY!!!!”.
4. Trump should have attacked much harder and much sharper. He focused too much on facts. Like Clinton, he should have focused much more on emotions.
5. Cards Trump may want to memorize: “you have an overactive imagination”. “The Cold War is over: if you want to be Hitler rather than FDR, fine, be my guest”, “are you calling millions of good police officers in this country RAycis???” “A Black man has a higher chance of winning the lottery than being shot by a police officer”. And, most importantly: USE FEAR AND EMOTION. That was something Trump failed to do at this debate, which is why he lost it.
6. Discuss some plans. Don’t criticize Her plan as being too revealing, but as being not detailed enough.
7. Gather up some comebacks to the “raycism, misoginy, HE WANTS TO START A WAR GUYZ!!!!!” cards. He addressed the “racism” one reasonably well, but the misoginy and war cards were Hers to keep. Also, come up to some response to the birther card. That’s the problem with Trump: not enough ready responses, not enough attacks. Plan it forward.
All in all, I expect a drop of Trump’s chances back to the mid-20s % in the NowCast; not lower than 15% at any point in time.
Sharpen your knives, Trump: this is gonna get ugly. If only she uses the darkness, she wins. Make people fear Her, not just the situation in general.