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Podesta: ‘Pence Was Smooth,’ ‘Seemed Sort of Likable,’ But ‘Trump Lost’ and Kaine ‘Got the Job Done’

On Wednesday’s broadcast of MSNBC’s “Morning Joe,” Clinton Campaign Chairman John Podesta argued that during the Vice Presidential Debate, “Governor Pence was smooth. He seemed sort of likable,” but “Donald Trump lost,” while the Democratic VP nominee, Senator Tim Kaine (D-VA) “got the job done.”

Podesta said, “I think that Donald Trump lost, and that was fairly clear. And, I just got in on the conversation, but, look, I think Tim Kaine did great job. He defended Hillary. He laid out clear plans, and he kept putting Trump’s own words to Mike Pence, and Mike Pence never defended Donald Trump. He made a kind of — a little bit of an attempt on his business practices, his loss of a billion dollars, but he didn’t even defend his failure to release his tax returns. So, I think time after time, he just kept shaking his head. It was sort of surprising. You couldn’t tell whether he was shaking his head because he didn’t believe Donald Trump could say such things, or he was trying to suggest that he hadn’t. But, of course we know he had.”

He added, “I think Tim came in with a — the strategic mission to lay out, clearly, his plans. I think he did a very good job with that. He was aggressive from the start, and to challenge Mike Pence to defend Donald Trump, and Mike Pence didn’t do it. So, I don’t think he changed the course, or the dynamic of the race in any way. And I think that what we saw was a guy who could, you know, sit back, lay back a little bit, seemed like a reasonably nice guy, but didn’t defend the top of the ticket.”

After “Meet the Press” anchor Chuck Todd asked Podesta, “You said — the first thing you said is, you didn’t say anything about the debate between Kaine and Pence. You said, ‘Donald Trump lost,’ you noted — it sounds like you believe Mike Pence won the 90-minute exchange, or made a better presentation or an impression than Tim Kaine, but you feel as if Tim Kaine did a lot to attack Donald Trump, is that what you’re trying to say here?”

Podesta responded, “Look, I — what I’m trying to say is that Governor Pence was smooth. He seemed sort of likable, but he didn’t get the job done. The vice president’s job is to go in and try to defend the top of the ticket. Mike Pence looked like more like he was looking at 2020 than 2016. He kind of walked away. He did backflips on Russia. He didn’t sound at all like what Donald Trump has been saying out on the campaign trail. He made a whole new policy up on Syria, which embraced Hillary Clinton’s approach to what’s going on in Syria. So I think that Tim got the job done.”

Follow Ian Hanchett on Twitter @IanHanchett

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