There is nothing more satisfying than the combination of politics and comedy. And last night’s republican presidential debate accomplished just that!
The debate featured the top 10 ranking candidates in national polls – JEB Bush, Dr. Ben Carson, Chris Christie, Ted Cruz, Mike Huckabee, John Kasich, Rand Paul, Marco Rubio, Donald Trump, and Scott Walker.
Aside from Fox News receiving a much-needed boost in ratings, America’s anticipation was finally satisfied. The earlier “happy hour” debate for the candidates that did not make the cut for the main stage, saw Carly Fiorina as the clear-cut winner.
Although, I missed that debate because of my regularly scheduled afternoon siesta, I was happy that the only woman running on the side of the GOP, did well.
I had a lot of expectations heading into the 9pm republican debate – who I thought would shine, flop, etc. For some crazy reason, I saw Donald Trump doing very well, considering his underselling the days leading up to the big night. I also assumed JEB Bush would be really strong, given his dynastic presidential influence.
Let’s just say that the night did not go entirely as expected.
Here is the recap and the highlights, in case you missed it!!!
WINNER OF THE NIGHT:
She was not there……..but she kind of was. Hillary Clinton became the GOP’s favorite punching bag, yet she still emerged as the victor. The republican candidates just reiterated out-of-date and out-of-touch policies on women’s health issues, education, healthcare reform, military and national security. None had an affirmative plan about how they will fight for the middle class. After tonight’s theatrical performance, I just cannot see how Hillary would not win the presidency.
THE OPENING ACT
The debate was set in a large Cleveland arena and the atmosphere resembled that of a trashy sporting event. Obama-hater Megyn Kelly and two other Fox News minions served as moderators, throwing out useless political trivia and humorless jokes.
The candidates’ answers were very rehearsed and there was plenty hand raising and grandiose motioning, as if Caesar was addressing his Romans.
The Winners: Marco Rubio, JEB Bush, John Kasich
They agree that illegal immigration is a major problem in the United States, but they believe that it should be handled in the correct way. People from other countries should still be allowed to come to America to pursue a better life, but they must go through the proper channels. Who better to understand the necessity for immigration reform that these three men? Marco Rubio was born to Cuban parents, JEB Bush’s wife is Mexican, and John Kasich’s father was of Czech descent and his mother, Croatian.
The Loser: Donald Trump
He never answered the moderator’s question about what evidence he had concerning Mexico intentionally sending over criminals. He evades the question by continuing to call American leaders “stupid”.
They hate it. And all they want to do is veto, veto, veto!
Dr. Ben Carson brought up implementing a sort of “tithing” system. You give 10% of your wages to the government. This was my favorite strategy of the night. His suggestion is that if someone makes a billion dollars, they should pay one hundred million in taxes. If someone makes only $10, they should pay one dollar in taxes. Makes so much sense, doesn’t it? Equality & equity!
ON IRAN DEAL
They hate it. What else can we expect?
I do not believe that Republicans really care about Jews or Israel, but perhaps the “perks” they can receive from Israel speaks volumes of their defense of the country against their Middle Eastern neighbor.
ON PRO-LIFE VS. PRO-CHOICE
I pretty much tuned out during this segment. There is just something unseemly about middle-aged white men having an opinion or making decisions on women’s rights and issues.
FIGHT OF THE NIGHT
Chris Christie vs. Rand Paul on national security
The gloves most certainly came off!
Rand Paul is extremely committed to preserving and protecting the 4th Amendment that grants us freedom from the government tapping our phones.
Chris Christie feels the exact opposite. He believes that if we want to effectively fight terrorism, pretty much everyone may have to be subjected to phone taps. I must side with Senator Paul on this one, but unfortunately for him, that was a fight that Christie was not going to let him win.
MOMENT OF THE NIGHT
When Donald Trump told Rand Paul that he was not having a good night. And unfortunately for Senator Paul, it was true!
GAFF OF THE NIGHT
On the Black Lives Matter movement, one very brief and safe answer was given by Scott Walker that police officers need to be re-trained and that there are consequences for the abuse of power. He was the only candidate that was asked about this very serious issue right before they headed to a commercial break.
It is clear that racial injustice and discrimination is very low on the priority list for this party.
MOST SURPRISING CANDIDATE:
Marco Rubio usually gets under my skin. I typically cringe when he speaks, but I must say that, I was pleasantly surprised by some of his answers last night. He seemed much fairer and likable than the other times I have heard him debate or discuss political issues. I did not find myself rolling my eyes as much when it was his turn to speak.
MOST UNSURPRISING CANDIDATE
Donald Trump certainly did not trump anyone with his performance. He was his usual self – rude, crude, and lude. Trump made no hesitation to point out what he did not like about the Obama administration, but never actually laid out a plan for what he would do differently. He had no stand-out moment, aside from his testy exchange with Megyn Kelly.
THE BREAKOUT STAR
John Kasich was asked how he would “handle” one of his daughters being gay, to which he responded that he would love them unconditionally and that people should be shown respect regardless of political, religious, or social beliefs. “Nothing is more important to me that my family, faith, and friends”. He had several great moments throughout the night. Good for you, Guvna!!!
It is not hard to see that blacks still do not have a place in the Republican Party, regardless of one’s try to infuse in the GOP mix. Moderator Megyn Kelly’s first question of the night went to Dr. Ben Carson, as she interrogated him on his inexperience and lack of knowledge on foreign policy. He was asked probably two questions for the entire night, while some of the other candidates were given many opportunities to express their thoughts. Do I agree with Carson’s political views? Absolutely not. At the same time, he is a smart man with something to say. The manner in which he was treated should certainly be a wake up call for the good doctor. He must know that it is purposeless for him to support a party and a group of people that will never truly respect or accept him.
I must admit that I kind of like Senator Rand Paul. Although, he is on the other side of the aisle when it comes to politics, I find him fair and reasonable. However, he did not attack the issues……..or candidates in the way that would have made a difference. That’s too bad. Of all the 17 Republican candidates, he would be the only one I could see myself voting for – of course, after three or four Cosmopolitans.
SHOCKER OF THE NIGHT NO. 1
Donald Trump refuses to pledge that he cannot guarantee that he will support the eventual republican nominee or that he will not rule out a third party run as an independent if he is not the nominee. The crowd booed him.
SHOCKER OF THE NIGHT NO. 2
Donald Trump is questioned by moderator Megyn Kelly about his disparaging remarks towards women, to which he responds that the only woman he has called a “fat pig, dog, slob, and disgusting animal” is comedian Rosie O’Donnell. He goes on the remind Megyn that he has been “very nice to her” [Megyn] and that he may reconsider based on the way she has treated him. OMG!!! So he totally ruined his chances of getting the women vote!
WTF LINE OF THE NIGHT
“They called me Veto Corleone.”
I don’t think that it is such a good thing, Jebby!!! Vetoing every bill that comes across his desk depicts him as someone who is unable to be bipartisan for the benefit of the American people. JEB Bush confirmed for me that he would not be someone that I want for president.
THE OTHER ACTORS
Mike Huckabee was very solid, but served up the same conservative dish that we are used to getting from him.
Scott Walker was lackluster……..at best!
JEB Bush, who should have solidified his position in this presidential race was instead, flat and uninspired. Not to mention, he pretty much threw his big bro under the bus, when he half-heartedly admitted that he would not have invaded Iraq if he was given “better intelligence”. So I guess that wad his very clever way of acknowledging that his brother made a mistake. But what he did not acknowledge were the thousands of soldiers whose lives were lost in vain.
LOSER OF THE NIGHT
Ted Cruz was still getting ready.
WHOSE POLL NUMBERS MAY DROP
Donald Trump did not prove the critics wrong. He seems to be fixated on talking only about himself and his personal wealth. Because he just did not come through with any plans on these serious issues, he may see a drop in his poll numbers.
Rand Paul did himself no favors going tête-à-tête with the hefty governor from New Jersey. There is no doubt that Paul’s already single-digit poll numbers will take a rough tumble. If he is unable to turn his ratings around, he may soon have to bow out of this race.
WHOSE POLL NUMBERS MAY RISE
John Kasich was at home in every way that counted. The debate was held in Cleveland, Ohio where he governs, and he showed strength and fortitude in answering hot-button topics. Whether or not, you agree with him politically, there were some great points in his message that Mr. Kasich drove home that could very well reach across the aisle.
It was a good night for Marco Rubio. He had more solid plans to offer than his usual criticizing of the Obama and Clinton administrations.
Governor Chris Christie was one of the only candidates who actually delivered specifics when asked about his plans for the country if elected. He is definitely worth some of my time.
After tuning in to last night’s two-hour debate – the longest cumulative time I ever spent watching Fox News – I cannot wait until I am able to finally speak those three little words: Hello, Madame President!
What do you think about last night’s show – ahem – I mean debate?
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