Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump each made their case for who would serve as the better commander-in-chief Wednesday at an NBC News forum hosted by "Today" show co-anchor Matt Lauer.
It was the first time the two presidential nominees have appeared on the same stage -- separately, with Clinton going first.
Each candidate had solid and not-so-much moments. But the clear loser of the evening may have been Lauer, who was widely criticised for spending too much time hammering Clinton on her emails, and giving Trump softball questions he evaded.
I don't blame Lauer for asking the email question. But it's ABSURD that he started off with Trump, "Why should you be Commander-in-Chief?"— Jon Favreau (@jonfavs) September 8, 2016
Former Obama speechwriter Jon Favreau really didn't like Lauer's performance.
I think under the leadership of Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton, the generals have been reduced to rubble.
Trump said America's generals have been "reduced to rubble" under President Obama and suggested he would fire some of them if he wins the presidency in November.
Standout Trump quotes:
"I was totally against the war in Iraq." (In 2003 he favored the invasion)
Plans to defeat ISIS:
"And let me tell you, if I like maybe a combination of my plan and the generals' plan or the generals' plan ... if I like their plan, Matt, I'm not gonna call you up and say, 'Matt, we have a great plan.' This is what Obama does."
Praise of Russia's Putin:
"If he says great things about me, I'm gonna say great things about him. I've already said he is really very much of a leader. "
The decision to go to war in Iraq was a mistake, and I have said that my voting to give President Bush that authority was... my mistake.
Clinton, who has cast Trump as dangerously ill-prepared to be commander in chief, tried to center the discussion on her foreign policy proposals should she win in November. She vowed to not send American ground troops into Iraq or Syria to fight the Islamic State group.
Here are some other highlights from the event.
Clinton says she'll have a meeting every week in the Oval Office on the VA.— Alex Seitz-Wald (@aseitzwald) September 8, 2016
The Associated Press contributed to this report.