Good or bad, Donald Trump pretty much stole the show at the first primetime GOP debate back in August. I'd probably say it was bad (I mean, I definitely wouldn't call the Megyn Kelly drama "good"), but it hasn't seemed to hurt him any in the polls. With the drama of that night mostly in the past, it's time to start focusing on the next debate, which will take place on Wednesday. Trump is radically hard to predict, but this one recent quote from him might sum up what we can expect when he takes the stage later this week.
On Friday, Trump appeared in a hilarious sketch and interesting interview with Jimmy Fallon on The Tonight Show. As is the nature of Fallon's show, Trump didn't get specific or serious on many campaign issues, but he did talk a lot about helping "the vets," no doubt a worthy cause. In talking about wait times at VA medical centers, Trump also revealed something not entirely unexpected about himself: He's not patient.
They'd wait four, five, six days in a room. Can you imagine waiting for your doctor? I could not — if I'm 20 minutes... I go wild.
Granted, all of us probably complain about doctors' office wait times, and certainly, none of us — particularly war veterans — should have to wait for up to six days for care, but reveals both his priorities leading up to the debate and his natural sense of urgency.
Why Trump is focusing on veterans' issues now seems curious. For most of his campaign so far, we've heard him loud and clear on two issues: immigration and the economy. He wants to build a wall and he wants to create jobs. We get it. He hasn't pushed too hard on any other issue. In fact, perhaps the most memorable thing he has said so far about veterans was that time he said John McCain isn't a war hero.
Hopefully, Trump will have the opportunity — and take advantage of it — to speak more clearly about how he plans to help veterans during Wednesday's debate (and make no mistake, help is needed). But his words also suggest that he's finally looking into the more nuts-and-bolts aspects of being president, rather than large-scale, generalized policies that provide forceful talking points but aren't just feasible IRL. Let that sink in for a minute: Trump is thinking hard about what it might actually be like to be president.
And, therefore, you can expect him to speak about issues outside of immigration and the economy during Wednesday's debate — real, pervasive issues plaguing the country that Trump's campaign want to highlight that he can fix.
The second half of Trump's quote reinforces something we probably could have guessed about him: He doesn't like to wait. As president, maybe this could help him — a sense of urgency could be good at inspiring Congress to get to work. (Then again, it could cause him work rashly, so maybe it's not a good thing.) As a debater, though, it definitely speaks to his on-stage presence.
During the first debate, Trump wasted no time getting into controversial conversation (like calling out Rosie O'Donnell, for example). Granted, he was asked questions right away. But still, he chose to answer them with his typical abrasive nature, rather than be patient and speak calmly.
Surely, he'll jump right into the conversation again this week, holding nothing back and leaving no comment unsaid.
Trump's statement also comes at an interesting time for him strategically. Over the weekend, he told CNN that he was "trying to be nice" when asked about his fellow candidates. Given the not-entirely-nice reputation he's created for himself among the Republican Party and his fellow candidates, it will be interesting to see if this nice attitude carries through to Wednesday's debate — or if Trump's lack of patience gets the best of him.