Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton and Republican counterpart Donald Trump faced off in the first presidential debate of 2016 at Hofstra University in Hempstead, New York. Right from the start, the two dived directly into attacks. They engaged in testy exchanges over trade, the U.S. economy, race and foreign policy. The purpose of this project is to process unstructured (textual) information like presidential debate transcripts. We can compare 2016 and 2012 presidential debate transcripts, to tell if there any key words similar and find out some important topics from debates.

Original Python Code -> First Presidential Debate.


At first, we used python beautifulSoup package to read the transcription html document.  beautifulsoap python coding

Transcript_PresidentialDebate link ->   Obama_debate.html link ->

X : represent 2012 Obama Presidential Debate   Y : 2016 Presidential Debate

If X and Y mention same keyword, the program can automatically print it out as following:

python code

We can find out some keywords in both 2016 and 2012 presidential debate. Like economic development and foreign investment.

presidential debate python

Moreover, both 2016 and 2012 presidential debate mention about American leadership . 

”  number five, the other thing that we have to do is recognize that we can’t continue to do nation building in these regions. Part of American leadership is making sure that we’re doing nation building here at home. That will help us maintain the kind of American leadership that we need. ” said Obama in 2012.

In 2016 presidential debate the issue was raised agin as following : TRUMP: Is it President Obama’s fault?  CLINTON: Look, there are differences…TRUMP: Secretary, is it President Obama’s fault?

CLINTON: There are different views about what’s good for our country, our economy, and our leadership in the world. And I think it’s important to look at what we need to do to get the economy going again. That’s why I said new jobs with rising incomes, investments, not in more tax cuts that would add $5 trillion to the debt.

american leadership

The 2016 second presidential debate between Donald J. Trump and Hillary Clinton began with explosive attacks and ended with a measure of graciousness, as the two candidates complimented each other at the request of an audience member. However, there are some important issues can’t be missed. In a comparatively 2016 and 2012 , we hewed close to the basic arguments of campaign to focus on serious discussion like economic policy . They have very different visions — and promises — for the U.S. economy. Using text mining, we can easily hight line the keywords and unstructured (textual) information.


2 thoughts on “Presidential Debate and Text Mining”

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