Veterans political journalists Lou Cannon and Jerry Roberts took part in an Antioch University post-debate forum called “Say What” on Tuesday evening in Santa Barbara.
It is part of the “In Conversation” program.
Cannon, who has written a number of books on Ronald Reagan, has covered debates for decades.
He said he was disappointed with this one.
“I thought it was a downer of a debate, neither articulated their vision of the country,” said Cannon.
He said Republican candidate Donald Trump seemed confused at times, while Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton was reciting talking points.
Roberts plugged his nonpartisan Calbuzz.com website and got some laughs when he said Calbuzz headline after the debate was; ‘Hillary looks presidential– Was Donald on Drugs?’
Both journalists are former Antioch trustees.
They said some people consider it a Reality TV Election.
Cannon said millions of Apprentice TV show viewers feel like they know Trump, but the same can’t be said for Hillary.
Cannon, who serves as the editorial advisor for State Net Capitol Journal said Clinton could benefit from talking in simple terms like President Obama.
Roberts said there is a psychologist in Washington treating people for election stress. He said they are anxious. He believes the future of the Supreme Court should be the main issue.
“There will be 3 justices over 80 on Election Day and who ever the President is will get to appoint a lot of people,” said Roberts.
The former managing editor of the San Francisco Chronicle and former editor and publisher of the Santa Barbara News-press said every election is about, “money, mechanics and message.”
Both journalists will be watching for all three at the next debate.