Excerpt from New York Magazine
Written by Eric Levitz
Hillary Clinton is studying Donald Trump’s insecurities as if they were white papers fresh from Brookings, the New York Times reports. The Democratic nominee knows that voters won’t grade this fall’s debates on the precision of each candidate’s policy knowledge. She knows she can’t come off as merely better prepared than her rival — she must also be more likable and authentic. And to do that, she really has to prepare.
Clinton is consulting the ghostwriter of Trump’s autobiography, a team of psychologists, and “forensic” analyses of Trump’s GOP primary debates to identify “trigger points” that could cause the Republican nominee to “lash out in less-than-presidential ways.” So far, they have deduced that Donald Trump is “most insecure about his intelligence, his net worth and his image as a successful businessman,” and are scripting ways to strike at these pressure points. Once the game plan is assembled, Clinton will participate in a series of mock debates, with billionaire Mark Cuban, longtime Clinton aide James Carville, and New York congressman Joseph Crowley on the short list of potential Trumps.
The GOP nominee’s preferred method of debate prep is a bit less formal.