Sacramento Democrats rooted for Hillary Clinton and laughed at Donald Trump at the party’s local headquarters during the third and finale debate before the November election.
Clinton’s reference to Trump as a “puppet” for Russian President Vladimir Putin and comment that he built his hotels with “Chinese steel” Wednesday evening drew loud cheers from the crowd, mostly comprised of members of Sacramento County Young Democrats and Fem Dems. The two groups co-hosted the watch party with the state party.
Denise Tugade, a spokeswoman for Fem Dems, said more than 100 people turned out for the event, where guests drank beer and wine and feasted on lumpia.
“We had a really diverse group of people out here tonight and a very festive jovial atmosphere,” Tugade said.
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Democrats shook their heads at Trump’s comments as often as they nodded in agreement with Clinton. The young crowd mocked and at times seemed appalled by the GOP candidate. Many took particular offense when he called undocumented Mexican immigrants “bad hombres,” referred to Clinton as a “nasty woman” and said “nobody has more respect for women than I do.”
The debate was held 19 days before voters decide the contentious presidential election. Clinton faces another round of questions over recently leaked emails, while accusations of sexual assault and his own comments have plagued the Trump campaign.
Despite the good-natured atmosphere, the animosity supporters feel for the opposition surfaced at several points during the watch party. A handful of Clinton supporters-frustrated with Trump’s answers to moderator and Fox News anchor Chris Wallace-used expletives, said Trump needed to “shut up” and called out his false statements.
“A lot of the topics that Trump discussed have been covered in previous debates and are not applicable to the questions being asked,” said Sarah Degroot, a 20-year-old sociology major at UC Davis.
Many felt confident that Clinton won the night.
“With her already being in the lead, all she had to do was break even or win the debate and that was done and accomplished tonight,” said Robert Abelon, a member of Young Dems and Fem Dems.
Organizers asked attendees to sign up for the party’s “Promote and Protect the Vote” program, which kicks off November 4 and responds to problems at the polls, including voter intimidation.
“We have done this since 1992. But Trump’s ‘rigged’ election claims and his lies about voter fraud are giving it special urgency,” said Michael Soller, a spokesman for the California Democratic Party.