Monday night's first presidential debate was a whirlwind of political sparring as Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton duked it out on live television at Hofstra University. It wasn't the best performance for Trump, who spent much of the night defending himself from both Clinton and debate moderator Lester Holt. Trump, who appeared to be battling a cold, interrupted the moderator several times, either to stretch out his time or to directly attempt to fact check Holt. And following the event, when Trump didn't shake Holt's hand, it made it look like The Donald took things personally.
It was slightly awkward to watch, considering some of the drama surrounding Holt and Trump heading into the debate. While speaking with Fox's Bill O'Reilly prior to the event, Trump casually mentioned that Holt, an NBC journalist and registered Republican, was a Democrat. Trump made the point to insinuate that the debate would be rigged or biased. When pushed to defend the comment, Trump's campaign manager Kellyanne Conway told MSNBC's Morning Joe that Trump couldn't be lying about Holt's party affiliation, because he just didn't know better.
The gaffe — while minor compared to the candidate's previous erroneous statements — set the tone for Monday's debate, which featured a Trump who seemed a little behind both Clinton and Holt when it came to a thorough understanding of the facts. And following the debate, it appeared that Trump completely snubbed Holt when the moderator went in for a handshake. According to Twitter reports, Trump did later circle back around to shake Holt's hand, by why the initial hesitation? Something was clearly up, and there are tons of theories about what it could be.
He Was Embarrassed Because Of The Whole Democrat Mistake
Maybe we've been too harsh on Trump. Maybe he feels embarrassment just like the rest of us, and he wanted to avoid Holt because he was a little ashamed of insinuating that his fellow Republican was in fact a dreaded Democrat.
He Was Tired And Wanted To Get Home ASAP
When Trump is done with something, he's done — and he seemed pretty over that whole debate. Maybe he was so eager to get home and get to bed that he just totally skipped over the polite handshake protocol.
He Was Scared Of Getting Too Close To Clinton
To put it nicely, Clinton kind of wiped the floor with Trump. The video clearly shows that Clinton was standing close to Holt, and maybe Trump just wanted to steer clear of his opponent and avoid giving her a chance to take another go at him.
He Didn't Want To Spread His Cold
There is a real possibility that Trump was actually being kind by passing on the handshake, because he didn't want to possibly infect Holt with his sniffles. If that's the case, we've all been hating on Trump when he might have been trying to do something nice. Maybe.
Regardless of the reasons for the initial snub, Trump did seem to realize that he looked extremely petulant by passing on the handshake, and made up for it. But if the 2016 election has taught us anything, it's that anything can be a conspiracy theory if you dream big enough.