Social media reacts to second US presidential debate

Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton 's second debate dominated social media on Sunday evening

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Image: John Locher AP/Press Association Images

With the first debate between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump breaking viewing records and producing plenty of talking points, there was little doubt that the second would also draw massive amounts of attention. 

As expected, social media was dominated by talk of the debate on Sunday evening, but it started before the event itself kicked off as Trump held a press conference with a number of women who had made accusations against Bill Clinton. Many criticised the move, noting that it was a low point in a tough campaign.

The evening started with a number of questions for the Republican candidate on the leaked conversation from 2005, which Trump struggled to deal with. The reaction was largely critical, stating the he further normalised the comments and behaviour, and failed to realise the impact of his words.

At one stage, Donald Trump also suggested that, were he to win the election, he would get a special prosecutor to look into Hillary Clinton's email server and that if he were in charge, she would be in jail.

Former Attorney General Eric Holder took to social media to claim that this was a promise from Trump to abuse the power of the office of the president, while others noted that the impact of the claim that he would jail his political opponents would not be fully realised until the post-mortem of the debate was complete.

Perhaps the moment that drew the most attention was Trump's claim that Captain Humayun Khan would still be alive if he were president, which was met with a barrage of angry tweets, most notably from Clinton's Foreign Policy spokesperson, Jesse Lehrich, who tweeted his incredulity with what he later said was an "inappropriate" response.

Khan's family also responded to the claim, stating that "Our son served this country with honour and distinction, and gave the ultimate sacrifice. The only thing Donald Trump sacrifices is the truth."

On a lighter note, there were some jokes about how both candidates interacted with each other on stage, the positions they took up as the other one talked, or how the audience was reacting in the town hall.

The moderators were also praised for their performance, on what was a very difficult night and an ill-tempered debate.

The star of the night was, perhaps, audience member Karl Becker, whose question at the end brought the debate to a close on a high note, as he asked both candidates to state something about the other that they admired.

Trump's response - that Hillary never quits - had a number of people noting that he might have just contradicted himself slightly.

One thing's for sure, the third debate will certainly be interesting.