Crowds flock to Fresno watch parties as Trump, Clinton square off

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As the presidential clash unfolded on TV, watch parties cheered and then jeered as Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton faced each other for the first time. (KFSN)

Presidential candidates Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump squared off Monday night for their first debate in New York.

But in the Valley, the debate attracted droves of people to attend local watch parties. As the presidential clash unfolded on TV, watch parties cheered and then jeered. They anticipated one the world's most famous women taking on one of it's most recognizable men.

"It's important for our country," said Don Hunsucker, a Clinton supporter. "It's important for the citizens of our country."

The debate drew verbal jabs almost instantly. Quips about Trump's elusive tax returns turned into an attack on Clinton's deleted e-mails.

"I thought he played it off pretty well," Michael Urner said of Trump. "If she wanted to see his tax returns, she would have to show her e-mails."

But the main event, the economy, drew the fiercest reactions. Trump vowed to bring overseas jobs back, form better trade agreements, while Clinton vowed to tax the rich and Trump promised to give them a break.

"For someone, somehow to think by continuing to take money from corporations that that's going to bring more jobs, I think the last 8 years speak for itself," Trump supporter Dan Payne said.

"We are all watching the middle-class shrink and Hillary has some very distinct plans," Clinton supporter Janet Miller said.

We asked local economists to weigh in. Professor Henry Nishimoto said although Trump's proposal vows to create millions of jobs. He believes there will be long-term consequences.

"The Fed would be forced to take some actions and increase interest rates to slow and cool the economy down and that would be disastrous," he said.

Nishimoto said the success of the country lies is its middle class and that whatever candidate promises to rebuild those families will help the Central Valley.

"To transform our economy," Nishimoto said. "To move it away from an agriculturally-based economy and move it to a manufacturing-based economy."

Related Topics:
politicspoliticshillary clintondonald trumpdebateFresno
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