When Republican Presidential candidate Carly Fiorina started rising in polls, frontrunner Donald Trump put the businesswoman in his crosshairs. Specifically, Trump said, he doesn’t like her ugly face.
At the second Republican debate on Wednesday, September 16, moderator Jake Tapper began the night by asking Fiorina to comment on whether Trump is suited to be the leader of the free world. That kicked off a back and forth between the candidates that lasted on and off all night, as the pair traded insults about their respective business careers.
Trump is nothing more than a puffed up “entertainer” with a history of bankruptcy, Fiorina said. And Fiorina was a total disaster that cost Hewlett-Packard billions of dollars and thousands of jobs, Trump fired back.
Naturally, Teflon Trump denied any possibility that he had ever made a mistake in his business career, ever. Meanwhile, Fiorina forcefully defended her controversial tenure at HP. Immediately following the debate, and even while it was happening, fact checkers tested the accuracy of the attacks.
But in the crowded GOP field, do the facts really matter that much? Ultimately, the candidate with the better spin could end up swaying voters to his or her cause.
“While Trump brings a much needed straight talk, anti-typical politician spin to the race, I feel he, along with all of the candidates, should focus on educating the voters on their policy as opposed to the shortcomings of the opposition,” says Keith Holloway, CEO, Stock Market Manager.
No doubt both Trump and Fiorina have had their respective shareholder communications teams working overtime in the past. Fiorina did shepherd HP through the dot-com crash at the turn of the millennium, but Trump told the truth when he said that Fiorina cut thousands of jobs from the company following a merger with Compaq. And while Trump has never personally filed for bankruptcy, Fiorina was right to point out that Trump’s businesses have filed for bankruptcy on four occasions.
In this particular round of he-said, she-said, Fiorina might have won the upper hand. The only woman in the race earned the biggest applause line of the night with her response to Trump’s comments on her appearance.
“I think women all over this country heard very clearly what Mr. Trump said,” she said.