Super Bowl-sized ratings, the long-awaited first presidential debate of 2016 arrives Monday. Moderator Lester Holt of NBC News will offer six topic segments, then let the candidates duke it out.
According to their track records, the debate should go something like this:
Holt: The first subject is health care. Mr Trump, why don’t you start?
Trump: Hillary, are you dying? You look lousy. What’s wrong?
Clinton: I feel nauseous every time you speak.
Trump: I feel nauseous every time I look at you.
Clinton: I’ll bet you say that to all the girls.
Trump: Not at all. My Melania’s a 10.
Clinton: Are you talking looks or IQ?
Holt: That’s enough! Health care! What will you do about Obamacare, Mr. Trump?
Trump: I will abolish it.
Holt: And replace it with what?
Trump: Something much better.
Holt: Such as? Be specific.
Trump: Something terrific.
Holt: Secretary Clinton?
Clinton: I will keep and enhance it, and include a public option allowing those under 65 to buy into Medicare. I’ll also urge Congress to pass funding to fight the Zika virus.
Clinton: Oh, and that’s right, increasing funding for the mentally ill.
Holt: Let’s move on to international issues. What would you do about Aleppo? Mr Trump?
Trump: I feel terrible for those who have contracted Aleppo. It’s a serious disease. But I plan to build the greatest, hugest Aleppo colony the world has ever seen.
Clinton: Hah! Aleppo is a city!
Trump: I knew that. I’m kidding. Humorless Hillary!
Holt: Mr Trump, you have called Russian President Vladimir Putin a great leader. You do know that he locks up political opposition and murders journalists who write something he doesn’t like?
Trump: Like I said, a great leader.
Clinton: He was KGB!
Trump: The rapper? Even if he did all these things you say, which people tell me isn’t true, if he compliments me, I’m not supposed to compliment him back?
Trump: That’s very rude.
Clinton: What’s rude is invading Ukraine.
Trump: Never happened.
Clinton: It did so.
Trump: Did not.
Holt: On that note, I’m afraid our time is up. Thanks to Mr. Trump and Secretary Clinton for appearing, and God help us all.
Playwright Mike Vogel blogs at newyorkgritty.net