It just wasn’t that crazy. Except for the Siamese Twins thing, which was bizarre.
Of course, the format of the first official GOP Presidential Debate didn’t help: ten men on a stage confined to 30 second “gotcha” answers.
And the questions were terrible. Just awful. It was like taking the bitterest people on the Survivor jury and giving them two hours to make personal attacks. Sure, the questions were tough–even nasty–but really, what did we learn?
Nothing. Not a damn thing. All of the Republican candidates don’t like the Iran deal. They all think the path to prosperity is to cut taxes on the wealthy and get rid of Obamacare. Hillary Clinton: bad. Illegal immigration: bad. Balancing budgets: good. Reagan: good.
But we knew that already.
And, as I noted in a tweet last night, there was little to no discussion of the major issues that matter to ordinary Americans. Climate change wasn’t mentioned once. That’s bad. Nor infrastructure. Or the minimum wage–or worker wages/compensation in general, or student loan debt, or the cost of college, or gun control.
Education was mentioned, but only to badmouth the Common Core, which is nonsense. And there was an allusion to #BlackLivesMatter and police violence, but it was short lived.
Why? Because conservatives, Republicans, Tea Partiers–the people that watch Fox News–don’t care about these issues. They’re too distracted by ISIS, Iran, and all their other antivalues. Remember, Republicans don’t really know what they’re for–they just know they don’t like Obama–the crotchetiest old man in the retirement home who doesn’t get along with anyone because he’s such an ornery old cuss.
But I digress. The debate was basically a void brought into existence by conservative media, wherein real issues don’t matter and the more vaguely one can promise freedom, prosperity, strength, and invoke Reagan, the better.
Anyway, I made a chart–so if you didn’t get a chance to watch, or you just want a good blow by blow, here it is (note: it’s in chronological order–more info/explanations in the hyperlinks).
“Hillary Clinton has a radical position on abortion.” I can’t remember who said this–was it Walker? Anyway, not true. She’s famous for saying abortion should be “legal, safe, and rare.”
Scott Walker: my position on abortion (none–not even in cases of rape or incest) is what America wants. On a side bar, Megyn Kelly asked Marco Rubio this about abortion: “If you believe that life begins at conception, as you say you do, how do you justify ending a life just because it begins violently through no fault of the baby?” Is that the official position, now, of the Republican Party–that abortion should be banned, even in cases or rape or incest? If so, wow. Just wow.
Rand Paul: we (the U.S.) arm ISIS. Sorry Senator Paul, but with all due respect, having something you gave to someone stolen by a third party does not equal giving. That’s just dumb.
Trump: the Mexican govt. is sending criminals across the border on purpose.
Carson: progressive movement is responsible for America’s problems. To find out why that’s a bad lie, read my blog. Or just read.
Almost everyone: Obamacare is bad for economy
Bush: Hillary and Obama divide America. Really? Really? When your entire party’s official position on virtually every issue is the knee-jerk opposite of whatever Obama does? The same party that questioned this President’s birth certificate basically because he’s black? And if you think that’s not true, ask yourself this: would they have ever asked for the birth certificate of a white man, or said he was from Kenya, or a secret Muslim?
I’m sure there were more, but those were the ones I caught…
Issues ordinary Americans care about, mentioned in debate:
Issues top 1% and billionaire donors care about, mentioned in debate:
Cut federal spending
Cut taxes for business
Replace income tax with sales tax
Reduce income tax to 10%
Balancing the budget
Increase military budget
Send more military aid to Israel
Iran (think military industrial complex)
Moments of truth:
Kasich: used Medicaid expansion to treat drug addicts and mentally ill, and to help out working poor, because it was the Christian thing to do.
Huckabee: people on Wall St. and top 1% aren’t paying into Social Security.
Trump: on money in politics, “I will tell you that our system is broken. I gave to many people. Before this, before two months ago, I was a businessman. I give to everybody. When they call, I give. And you know what? When I need something from them, two years later, three years later, I call them. They are there for me. And that’s a broken system.”
Kasich: believes in traditional marriage, but would love his daughters no matter what–and recently attended a gay wedding for a friend.
Walker: I’d put troops on the Russian border.
Huckabee: the purpose of the military is to kill people and break things.
Summary of final statements:
Kasich: I’m experienced, rational, reasonable, and could legitimately win. (But I won’t be chosen because the Koch brothers don’t like me and the Republican base is insane.)
Christie: I’m a Republican in New Jersey, where people hate me.
Paul: I’m different, I filibuster, and my hair is curly.
Rubio: I came from illegal immigrants, vagary, vagary, vagary… America is great.
Cruz: On first day, I’d do everything right wing radio hosts scream about–sick the justice dept. on Planned Parenthood, allow Christians to discriminate against gay people, and go to war with Iran. I’m also the biggest phony in the world.
Carson: I’ve done cool surgeries. And I sound calm even though I say outrageous things.
Huckabee: here’s a bad joke about Clinton/Trump… God.
Walker: wife, kids, and a Harley (but no college degree). I hate unions and working people. I suck Koch and smile a lot, but make no mistake, I’m an awful human being.
Bush: cut taxes and regulations, reform immigration and entitlements, yada, yada, yada, I’m still awkward as all hell and my brother was one of the worst presidents in history.
Trump: We don’t win anymore–I’ll make us winners. (I’m a megalomaniac who’s managed to offend women, Latinos, and Megyn Kelley–more to come tomorrow.)
The final takeaway from this debate is that the Republican Party, with the recent Planned Parenthood fiasco, is getting ever more extreme on abortion. It seems now that most of the candidates think abortion should be outlawed, even in cases of rape or incest. That’s bad. Oh, but the science is clear: at the moment of conception, the embryo is a living human being. On that apparently, they’re very willing to listen to the scientists. Just not on climate change.