The most important quotes of the first presidential debate

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Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump (L) speaks as Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton listens during the Presidential Debate at Hofstra University.
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Pool/Getty Images

Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump faced off Monday in the first of three presidential debates before Election Day on November 8.

NBC’s Lester Holt moderated the frequently contentious debate at Hofstra University in Long Island, which was divided into six 15-minute segments, though the segments often went over the time allotment.

The topics were “America’s Direction” (the state of the union), “Achieving Prosperity” (the economy), and “Securing America” (national security and foreign policy).

The showdown was filled with back-and-forth.

We’ve collected all of the most buzzed-about quotes from the debate here.


Donald Trump on Hillary Clinton’s free trade record:

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Skye Gould/Business Insider

Clinton on her economic plan:

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Skye Gould/Business Insider

Trump responds to calls for him to release his tax returns:

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Skye Gould/Business Insider

Clinton had a response ready:

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Skye Gould/Business Insider

Trump said his temperament is one of his “best” qualities:

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Skye Gould/Business Insider

Clinton hit Trump on his multiple bankruptcies:

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Skye Gould/Business Insider

Clinton was ready for the question about criminal justice reform:

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Skye Gould/Business Insider

Trump fired back at Clinton over her stance:

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Skye Gould/Business Insider

Clinton talked about policing reforms as well:

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Skye Gould/Business Insider

Trump illustrated the bad situation he sees in America:

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Skye Gould/Business Insider

Trump repeatedly talked about “stop-and-frisk” as a way to bring down crime:

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Skye Gould/Business Insider

Clinton didn’t agree with Trump’s stance on “stop-and-frisk”:

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Skye Gould/Business Insider

When asked about his statement that Clinton doesn’t have the “presidential look,” Trump talked about her “stamina”:

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Skye Gould/Business Insider

Clinton denied Trump’s accusations about her “stamina”:

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Skye Gould/Business Insider