The Republican candidates gathered round the Fox News camp fire to spin some more conservative yarns and make those who skipped tuning in to the Google/Fox News debate happy that they did.
1). The GOP Loves To Campaign On The Flat Tax – The big GOP answer tonight for the ailing economy was the flat tax. Herman Cain was back in the house with his flat tax plan, and this time he was joined by Gary Johnson who promised to enact the flat tax. The Florida Republican audience loved the flat tax idea, but the question is when Republicans have been in control of the federal government why haven’t they implemented the flat tax? Could it be because they know that it won’t work, and the flat tax is a better GOP primary issue than it would be as actual policy.
2). Mitt Romney Thinks Small Classrooms Are A Teachers Union Scheme – Mitt Romney seriously argued against smaller classroom sizes because fewer students in each classroom would lead to more teachers being hired. According to Romney, the call for smaller classrooms is just a scheme being put forward by the teachers unions.
3). DADT Repeal in Jeopardy – The crowd gave Rick Santorum big applause for promising to bring back DADT. If any gay service member thought the battle was over this week, they best remember to cast their vote in 2012 for President Obama. If this debate was any indication, and Obama loss may mean the return of DADT.
4).Give Us Our Foreign Aid Money Back (Not You Israel) – All of the candidates bashed the amount of aid the United States gives to foreign countries, but all of them rushed to the defense of Israel, the country that just so happens to be the largest recipient of US foreign aid dollars. (Remember kids, you can’t spell hypocrisy without GOP).
5). More Lies About Obamacare and Who The Bureaucrats Really Are – Herman Cain claimed that Obamacare would have killed him because bureaucrats would have been making the decisions. Mr. Cain doesn’t seem to understand that Obamacare is designed to get the bureaucrats out of the patient/doctor relationships. Millions of Americans have needed procedures rejected every single day because insurance company bureaucrats are more interested in pinching pennies than providing care.
6). Rick Perry Gets Booed – The GOP frontrunner met with some serious audience hostility because he dared to defend his decision to give illegal immigrants in state tuition. He said Americans should have a heart when dealing with kids of illegal immigrants. His compassion got him booed.
Winners And Losers:
1). Mitt Romney – Mittens did his homework, and set out to paint Rick Perry as a liberal. Romney used Illegal immigrants getting in state tuition to his advantage and hammered Perry to make him look soft on immigration. Romney lost points with the primary crowd by refusing to call Obama a socialist. Mitt Romney is still trying to win the nomination by running a general election campaign. It is still up in the air as to whether that strategy will work.
2). Gary Johnson – Johnson was a winner the moment he stepped on the stage, because he was actually involved in the debate. He also got a lot more television time than a candidate who is sitting at 1% in the polls probably deserves, but he performed well, and his libertarianism played well with the audience.
3). Ron Paul- Paul isn’t going to win the nomination. He probably won’t win a single primary, but he keeps chugging along. He will still be in the race long after 6 of the 9 people he shared the stage with have dropped out.
1). Rick Perry – Gov. Perry knows how to talk the tea party talk, but when Romney tried to attack Perry over offering in state tuition for illegal immigrants, Perry said that Americans need to have a heart. (He got booed for that).
Rick Santorum then piled on by claiming that illegal immigrants are getting subsidized tuition that American students don’t get. His GOP rivals were trying to paint him as a liberal tonight, and if just enough primary voters buy it, Mitt Romney will be the nominee.
2). Michele Bachmann- At the last debate Bachmann looked to be fading, tonight she was all but gone. Bachmann was just another candidate taking up space on the stage. She has fallen back into the pack now. The ride is over, and she is quickly becoming a fringe top tier candidate.
3). Herman Cain – Anytime a candidate begins an answer with the phrase my opponents have made a lot of good points, it isn’t a good sign. Mr. 9/9/9 is all flash and gimmicks. Cain has yet to offer a serious policy answer to any question. Herman Cain is bringing nothing to these debates. He is a non-factor.
3). Rick Santorum – Santorum just isn’t a top tier candidate. His only role is these debates seem to be to lob shots at the frontrunners from the fringe. Ricky was all dishonest on No Child Left Behind. He voted for the bill.
5). Newt Gingrich- The former Fox News personality got a good bit of airtime. He isn’t going to win a single thing in this primary, and he said nothing memorable, but he will sign a nice new contract with Fox News after he drops out.
6). Jon Huntsman – Huntsman brings a decent moderate Republican message, but he got so little air time that at one point, he had to ask if his mic was working. This was a Fox News debate, which meant that Huntsman was pretty much buried.
Overall, this was a truly forgettable debate. The big jobs solution was tax cuts, getting rid of regulations, and repealing healthcare reform. If any voters watched this debate looking for solutions to the nation’s problems, they were sorely disappointed. This debate featured hours of rhetoric and red meat, but these candidates offered no indication that they are prepared to do anything other than return the country back to the policies of George W. Bush.
The worst thing about this debate was that it was bad, really boring television. The Google/Fox News debate was light years better than the CNN/Tea Party Express debate, but there have been too many of these gatherings already. The candidates are offering canned answers and everyone except Gary Johnson brought nothing fresh. If you skipped The Office or CSI to watch this, I feel sorry for you.