Donald Trump gets a Town Hall stage to himself for the second night in a row on Thursday. His supporters can watch a live stream as CNN hosts the second part of its South Carolina Republican candidates’ forum, this time with clear frontrunner Trump as the main attraction. Former Florida Governor Jeb Bush and Ohio Governor John Kasich will also appear on the CNN Town Hall, but polls show that their candidacies have essentially become afterthoughts to the 2016 campaign.
On Thursday, MSNBC stages a Democratic Town Hall with candidates Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders appearing separately on stage at KMA Event Center in Las Vegas, Nevada, two days ahead of that state’s Democratic caucuses.
The Democratic event on MSNBC goes live at 9 p.m. Eastern, one hour after the CNN Republican Town Hall. Whether Donald Trump will appear in that first CNN hour, or whether he will be held back to go head-to-head with Sanders and Clinton on MSNBC has not yet been announced.
Watch a live stream of the Donald Trump CNN Republican Town Hall in the video below, or continue reading for other streaming links.
To find out how to watch a live stream of the Donald Trump CNN Republican Town Hall from Columbia, South Carolina, see the links in the final paragraph of this article. The event goes live at 8 p.m. Eastern Time, 5 p.m. Pacific, on Thursday, February 18.
Respected CNN anchor Anderson Cooper will host the Thursday Town Hall, and political observers are waiting to see whether Cooper handles Trump any differently that Scarborough and Brezinski. The pair were widely perceived as too soft on Trump in the hourlong Wednesday broadcast and too cozy with the New York billionaire businessman and entertainer in general.
As CNN held the first part of its Republican Town Hall event on Wednesday night, Donald Trump was given his own, solo Town Hall program on competing cable news network MSNBC, where he was interviewed by Morning Joe co-hosts Joe Scarborough and Mika Brezinski. A full replay of that event can be viewed in the video below.
“The program highlighted the many ways in which the media’s coverage of Trump has been soft, insufficient, and without substance,” wrote Isaac Chotiner of the online news magazine Slate. “It remains shocking that after months of bigoted comments and almost pathological dishonesty, Trump still lands these types of interviews.”
Will Cooper take the opportunity to pin Trump’s feet to the fire over his numerous outrageous and controversial remarks and positions? It may not matter even if he does, at least, not as far as the course of the Republican primary campaign is concerned.
Not only do polls show Trump riding a seemingly insurmountable lead heading into the South Carolina primary just two days away, with the election-predicting site FiveThirtyEight.com giving Donald Trump a statistical 85 percent chance of victory on Saturday, the result would give Trump an early lead in the all-important delegate count that will be difficult to overcome even at this early stage of the primary process.
With a winner-take-all system in South Carolina, Trump stands poised to walk out of the state with a total of 67 delegates altogether, including those gained from his win in New Hampshire and a second-place finish in Iowa.
That total would be six times more than either Ted Cruz or Marcio Rubio, the only two candidates even still in the ballgame with Trump. While those 67 are fewer than 6 percent of the total needed for the nomination, with upcoming states assigning delegates on a proportional basis, rather than winner-take-all, the other candidates would need not only to beat Trump in most of those states, they would need to beat him by wide margins.
No current poll shows any turnaround of that magnitude as even a remote possibility.
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