Thursday, November 24, 2011

Republican Debate

I'm sorry I didn't get to this yesterday, but I wanted to talk a little about the Republican debate on Thursday night.  Co-sponsored by Heritage, AEI and CNN, it was billed as a "national security" debate.  Here are a few quick thoughts:

1.  Wolf Blitzer is a pro.  He did a nice job keeping things moving and giving them opportunities to respond to each other, without letting it become a schoolyard brawl.  Downside to his professionalism and fairness was that we heard far too much from single-digit candidates.

2.  That said....two of the single digit candidates (Bachman, Santorum) did surprisingly well.  Bachman's insistent counters to Newt's immigration plan were the opening moves on an onslaught you've seen the past two days.  Santorum was good on identifying what we are fighting (radical Islam, not terror). 

3.  My man--Mitt--did fine.  Didn't hurt himself, was good on Afghanistan (v. Huntsman) and on immigration.  Wolf's great job of being "fair" to all kept us from hearing as much from Mitt (and Newt) as I would have liked.  If this turns into a two-man race (Mitt and Newt), it will be interesting.

4. Newt--clearly a great debater, Newt is very comfortable in those environments.  His defenestration of Ron Paul was just fun to watch.  His stance on immigration sounds nice and may play to those who wish to see the revitalization of the Republican Party through an outreach to Hispanics...but it opens him up to some serious attacks from the others.  His narrative ("why would we throw out someone who has been here 25 years, paid taxes, has kids and grand-kids here, goes to church) pulls at the heart strings, but where would the line be drawn?  What about 20 years?  What about 30, but don't attend church?  I think the others will make hay with this one.

5.  Ron Paul--this guy scares me, and I can sum up in two words why:  Ross Perot. Perot handed the Presidency to Bill Clinton in 92, and he could ensure Mr. Obama's re-election next year.

6.  TSA--I think there is a lot of ground to be gained for all the candidates by demonizing this ridiculous organization and its wasteful, inefficient approach to airport security.


Anonymous said...

Newt's support of legalization of "SOME" illegal aliens will end up as a wash or even a gain in the polls and a definite plus should he be the GOP presidential candidate in the general election.

"The Hammer" said...

I don't know, I just couldn't be bothered watching this debate (actually I watched "Jonah Hex" and spent most of the evening writing Megan Fox a dirty letter). Anyway, thanks for the synopsis.

I have to say, I'm growing more comfortable with Mitt. I know he's been making an effort to attract the more conservative/libertarian wing of the party, of which I am of course a leading voice. But I also know that's who Obama wants to run against. The Dems have done a good job of smearing (justly or unjustly) the candidates they're afraid of so I'm just wondering what's waiting in the wings when Romney is finally nominated.

Sally said...

Bachmann also did a good job schooling Perry on foreign aid. Coined a great phrase when she described Pakistan as 'too nuclear to fail.'

Nukebike said...

Wahoo, there is a post up on RedState about Bain Capitol and your guy, Mitt. Sounds like a silver bullet against the most electable of the bunch...

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