Republican strategist and pundit Steve Schmidt's reaction just after the debate last night was one of stunned and subdued shock, especially as it related to the question of whether Trump would accept the outcome of the election.
After pronouncing Trump's refusal to accept the outcome of the election as a "disqualifying moment, he said, “It’s a moment of clear and present danger to our constitutional order, to the republic."
Schmidt also had harsh words for Trump's overall performance.
“Look at the end of the debate when he says, ‘You nasty woman,'” he mocked. “He was incoherent again on national security issues. He was like an old man in the park feeding squirrels arguing with himself on the question of Mosul. He was incoherent on the question of Aleppo, and just somebody who has not prepared himself over the course of the campaign on these vital national security issues.”
Once again, he was urgent in his call for national leaders to step up and condemn Trump's dangerous rhetoric around the elections.
"Constitutional officers like Paul Ryan are now at an hour where they’re called to step forward, to exhibit political courage, to put the country first and to communicate very clearly that we have legitimate elections in this country and that is how we choose our leaders," he emphasized.
Schmidt has been one of the few authentic conservative voices in this campaign. The gravity of his tone and the concern he has about the irresponsible rhetoric should concern us all.