Thursday, March 3, 2016

Politics: Republican Presidential Debate #11

Set in the financially troubled city of Detroit, the final four Republican presidential candidates faced off against one another featured on Fox News. 

The moderators went right at the candidates with Megyn Kelly finally encountering Donald Trump since the frontrunner skipped the previous debate this station held due to a disagreement between the host and Trump. The hosts brought up recent controversy like former Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney's comments against Donald Trump, Marco Rubio's recent childish insults, and Ted Cruz's second place performance on Super Tuesday.

Mr. Trump was on the defensive once again with attacks from both sides and tough questions from hosts including his lawsuit over Trump University, his lack of foreign policy experience, and his rapid changing on multiple issues. Trump relied on his stock statement and continued to bluster when he was confronted with discrepancies in what he said and reality. This debate turned out even crazier than the last one without sleepy and confused Ben Carson to eat up small minutes of the limited time he had. The hosts gleefully pitted each candidate against the frontrunner and it seemed only John Kasich wouldn't take the bait to argue and insult. Trump is facing a lot of backlash not only from the Democratic party but his own Republican party. Still, he manages to garner tons of support and wins nearly every state through the primary season. I'm not sure enough happened in this debate to change the tides against Trump.

None of these candidates had much of a chance to discuss their policies and were forced to respond to the frontrunner's statement the majority of the time. Ted Cruz focused on Trump's support of Clinton in previous elections and attacked him for his swapping back and forth. Cruz didn't do much for his own campaign but continues to campaign as the Trump alternative but doesn't add much substance other than that.

Rubio was the establishment's choice but performed poorly on Super Tuesday. He did not come off as strong as he did in the last debate as the first questions clipped his sarcastic wings. Rubio tried to point out Trump's flaws but his path to the nomination will be difficult. Rubio looked a bit flabbergasted at moments and try to push hard but the hosts did a better job. He did push the Trump University issue but the truth is all the conversation was on Trump and Rubio could not direct the attention back towards himself.

Kasich is trailing at the back of the pack with a more serious approach. He often points out the absurdity of this debate but this reasonableness does not appeal to the Republican base. Kasich still holds out for his home state of Ohio but other than that, I don't think he can win much. Kasich is the only one that comes out of this with any decency but he won't win the nomination that way.

Ben Carson appears to have dropped out but held off the announcement until tomorrow.

The Republican party is split as many members do not support the frontrunner. Trump has hijacked the party and even former candidates have come out of the woodwork to try to stop him. I believe all their efforts will be for not and Trump will carry the nomination much to the dismay of Republicans but even more so to Democrats. 

The question of the general election will be if the Democrats will be motivated enough by a boring candidate like Hillary Clinton or fear of Donal Trump to outnumber the excitement of the Republican party of this exciting, brash candidate. I am looking forward to more election results. This Saturday is another round of states and a Democratic debate!

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