It started with tense smiles, butsoon descended into talk of serving hard time.
Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump didn't pull his punches in the town hall-style debate, calling out Hillary Clinton's email scandal and saying the democratic nominee would "be in jail" if he was running the country.
The debate was already off to a rocky start, with both candidates declining to shake hands after walking on stage. But after a quarrel over Trump's comments on women,, Trump turned the tables to talk about Clinton's use of a private email server.
It's a well-worn topic in the 2016 presidential debate, but Trump raised the stakes.
"If I win, I am going to instruct my attorney general to get a special prosecutor to look into your situation, because there has never been so many lies or so much deception, there has never been anything like it...the people of this country are furious," Trump said at the debate at Washington University in St. Louis, Missouri.
"After getting the subpoena, you delete 33,000 emails. And then you acid washed them."
Clinton called the Republican candidate out for his "false" comments.
"It is just awfully good that someone with the template of Donald Trump is not in charge of the law in our country," she said.
"Because you would be in jail."
After a rally of cheers, moderator Anderson Cooper attempted to call the debate back into order, but Donald Trump was not willing to let the point pass.
"I would like to know why you aren't bringing up the emails?" he asked of Cooper. "I have [been bringing them up]. It hasn't been finished."
The crowd might have responded in force to Trump's threat of jail, but the response extended beyond Washington University. Political analyst Frank Luntz pointed to Trump's comments, saying the Republican candidate's comments led to a massive spike in support from focus groups.
With one debate left before November's election, Trump doesn't look set to drop the email scandal any time soon. Thank goodness we'll haveto keep us going in the mean time.
US Tech Policy
reading•Trump threatens Clinton with jail time over email scandal
May 24•Facebook's Mark Zuckerberg has a tough road ahead in Europe on data privacy
May 22•Mark Zuckerberg gets grilled by EU over data mining, election meddling
May 21•If renewable energy can power entire countries, why isn't everyone doing it?
May 17•House committee rejects Trump's defense of ZTE