Opinion: The Malevolent Election
If I had to choose one word, to sum up this election campaign, it would be "malevolent".
It is like the American democratic process has been poisoned.
It is malicious, spiteful and hostile.
You can sense the gloom. If you think it looks bad from home, it feels far worse on the ground stateside.
I’ve felt it around Hillary Clinton, Donald Trump and even Barack Obama.
At a Florida rally, I watched Clinton get all negative and slag off Trump, and then echo his behaviour by venting her anger at a nutty protester who wasn't worth the bother.
She either snapped or did it for the cameras - either way it was bad.
Despite all the campaign glitz, the Clinton crowd was listless. She was tired and robotic. There was no feeling of energy or oomph behind her.
Her people didn't really act as if everything is on the line - which it obviously is.
Trump’s crew in Miami on the other hand have incredible energy. He has tapped into something that drives them.
There is real rancour and anger among Trump's supporters - I will never forget a young boy telling me why he supported Trump: "Because he will deport Muslims". His mother's arm was around him at the time.
It’s not Trump himself - his supporters seem driven more by their hatred of Hillary Clinton and of "Washington".
Trump’s people aren't doing it for him, he is just there. And Clinton’s people aren't doing it for her either - she’s just there too.
Now Obama’s people really do love him - it is an incredible energy, like Trump’s.
But the political malevolence creeps in here too, when Obama gets negative about Trump.
There is a real sense of disappointment about Hillary Clinton taking over though, and it brought a sense of gloom to Obama’s rally in Florida today.
It is like the Democrats are trying too hard - they have a fake smile.
Unsurprisingly, outside of the rallies and away from the TVs and internet coverage, the American public have switched off. They speak about the election with a tone of resignation.
Politics is never perfect but this election has had far too much poison.
The blame-game over who or what is responsible doesn't really matter anymore - what is dead is dead.
This election is malignant and vicious. It is spiteful and hostile.
There are lots of good people around, but the energy that drives this election is almost entirely negative.
It is the "Malevolent Election".