GOP debate: Other Candidates Fail to Land a Punch on Mitt

Saturday’s Republican presidential debate in New Hampshire was supposed to be an opportunity for Mitt Romney’s more conservative rivals — mainly, Rick Santorum and Newt Gingrich — to cut the front-runner down to size.

But that didn’t happen. Instead, it was a Night of Pulled Punches. The Republican candidates have acquired plenty of reasons to dislike each other over the last few months of hard campaigning, but in person they still chose to be courteous.

Only after ABC’s moderators put their feet down, and rudely quoted each candidate’s nasty television advertisements back to them, did anyone acknowledge their sharp divisions. Even then, Gingrich claimed a bit ludicrously that it wasn’t he who called Romney’s economic plan “timid,” it was the Wall Street Journal.

“I’m running against Barack Obama,” Romney said several times. For most of the evening, he was, in fact, effectively unopposed for his own party’s nomination.

Romney eked out a narrow victory in Iowa, appears likely to win again in New Hampshire and is looking surprisingly strong in polls in the next primary state, South Carolina. Saturday’s debate did nothing to slow his juggernaut, let alone derail it. His rivals are running out of time.

4 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. martha
    Jan 07, 2012 @ 20:41:39

    The best description on the debates so far:


    They lie. They cheat. They exaggerate. They bluster. They say one idiotic, ignorant, outrageous thing after another. They’ve shown such stark lack of knowledge — political, economic, geographic, historical — that they make George W. Bush look like Einstein and even cause their fellow Republicans to cringe.

    “When did the GOP lose touch with reality?” wonders Bush’s former speechwriter David Frum in New York Magazine. In the New York Times, Kenneth Duberstein, Ronald Reagan’s former chief-of-staff, called this campaign season a “reality show,” while Wall Street Journal columnist and former Reagan confidante Peggy Noonan even spoke of a~~ “freakshow.”~~

    That may be the most appropriate description.

    It’s horrifying because these eight so-called, would-be candidates are eagerly ruining not only their own reputations and that of their party, the party of Lincoln lore. Worse:

    They’re ruining the reputation of the United States.


    • Julian
      Jan 09, 2012 @ 18:48:59

      The fact that Romney won iowa by only eight(?) votes from Santorum should strike terror in the heart of all Americans. I’m reminded of childhood visits to the local Show, wandering down sideshow alley to gawp at the freaks, real and simulated. That this group of misanthropes have the unmitigated gall to put themselves up as the potential leader of the free world is mind numbing.


  2. WakeUpAmerica
    Jan 07, 2012 @ 22:19:17

    Well, Syrin, looks like you’re going to have to hold your nose in the voting booth no matter who you want as a candidate.


  3. moinkslinger
    Jan 08, 2012 @ 11:42:52

    When the GOP refused to call out McCain and Palin four years ago, they have been embracing idiots and kooks since 2008. Many Republicans have few choices hold their nose and vote, stay away from the polls on election day or cross over and vote for Obama.


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