We'll make another attempt to live-blog. However, I may get drawn away for family night activities. . . .
This debate could be entertaining if they actually let real tea party people ask real questions. We'll see. . . .
The big news is that T-Paw endorsed Mitt. Kenneth the Page (Gov. Jindal) endorsed Rick Perry. That about evens things up.
And Secretary of State Clinton fails to take Uncle Dick's bait to entertain a challenge to President Obama. Yeah, right, Dick. Just because you thought you could manipulate or bully Secretaries Powell and Rice, doesn't mean Hillary will even give you the time of day.
Tea partiers are telling John King that Romney is the "establishment" candidate and they don't want him. And now there's a clip of tea partiers calling for mass deportation of undocumented immigrants (lest we forget what they're about).
Wolf Blitzer moderating but I'm still anxious to see what the real format is. CNN is a bit over the top in dramatic intro, including "Newt Gingrich, the BIG Thinker." heh, heh. Now, Wolf, welcoming them on stage (this looks a lot like "American Idol" in more ways than one). Bachmann is getting big cheers. Huntsman, not so much.
Santorum and Mitt mouthing the National Anthem. There is at least one tea partier in the audience who doesn't have his hand over his heart. That's sort of the old, traditional way. But now I think only socialists don't.
Perry wants to be president to make Washington inconsequential (so is he going to be the next government that's the problem?) Where's Gary Johnson?
Yeah!! Tea partiers are asking questions! But Wolf has to repeat them? Bachmann wants to keep promises to current seniors but not to youngers. And on to Perry on his tone to save Soc. Sec. slam, dunk guaranteeing that it will be there for the current ones and ones moving into it. Mitt staring him down. Mitt turns around to jump on Perry's book in which he said it should be reformed "not turned back over to the states." Is it unconstitutional? Perry says it wasn't right and we have to get back to the constitution? Perry wants to converse about getting it back to the states instead of scarin' seniors like Mitt is doing. (Back to the Rick & Mitt show - two irascible neighbors fighting over their Elks Club Ponzi scheme). Uncle Ron wants to end all wars. Let the young people free from Soc. Sec. Cain says it's broken - optional retirement accounts. Hunstman - no drama jon-a. The newt cheer leads against Obama again. Santorum wants them on his side.
Balance Budget question. children's debt. The newt says there's so much waste he can fix it on modernizing fed gov. "Modernize?" stop paying crooks not cheating honest Americans. Santorum said drug benefit is working because it uses private insurance? He just said that? Wolf on Perry on W Bush. Perry won't repeal either. And he'll find more fraud in DC than even in Texas. Mitt says you can't just balance on fraud and waste but he will cut spending and grow economy. Paul was against it. Back on stopping the wars and saving our economy. Cut Dept of Ed. & Energy. Bachmann- government can't take care of you.
(ooh! I got a hit from Chile! Maybe they're Cain supporters).
Economy plan - Huntsman- economy is "human tragedy"reform tax code, corporate welfare - regulatory reform, no Obamacare - wean foreign oil. Perry - Obama will raise your taxes and "ZERO" jobs. Free up small business. clear regulatory relief. Bachmann - Bush tax cuts were not paid for. She's the only one saying "don't raise the debt ceiling" showin' her backbone. Cain - throw out tax code and replace with 9-9-9 because he knows Washington doesn't work. Wow! Romney remembered 7 things! and gives Perry credit for drawing 4 aces. Perry blasts Mitt on poker. Wants to kick out trial lawyers. Paul blasts Perry for doubling his taxes. Perry says Texas is the only land of liberty left.
The newt is the old guy who knows everything. He works with Dems on principle not on compromising principle. Cain is a business guy (or at least a "godfather"). (I'm falling asleep). Huntsman- this country needs more workers.
Federal Reserve question - Santorum audit the fed - sound money.
[sorry distracted - more distractions to follow - I left my hat at my daughter's last night so my grandsons are bringing it to me for family night. That's good grandpa-ing!]
We missed the talk on taxes but we know they're all evil anyway. But now we get a national sales tax question and Romney thinks that it actually falls more on the poor and middle class - (did I hear that right?)
Now a question on Exec Orders - Paul says grossly abused. moving troops OK. (this is a big Libertarian issue and Wolf fed that to Paul). Now Wolf jumps on Perry's cervical cancer mistake which he admits. But he will use exec order to get rid of as much as Obamacare - Bachmann really upset about government injections on little girls. Bachmann on morning-after dictatorship. Perry says it had an opt out and parental option. Bachmann jumps in as indignant on drug company making money with connections to drug company. Perry responds on Merck - $5K contibution - offended to be bought for $5K. Bachmann offended for all the little girls. Santorum says it's wrong. On the little girls against big government. Perry squirming. Protects life.
Health care costs question. Cain repeal Obamacare. 9-9-9. Pass loser pay laws. Perry on states rights Mass. can have Romneycare but not Texas. Paul wants people in comas to be free and take their own riisks. Wolf - "Society should just let him die?" at least two in the crowd yell, "YEAH!!" Paul says the churches should take care of it. Bachmann - Exec orders won't solve Obamacare and NO STATE has the right to force anybody to buy anything!! (going out beyond states rights to pure Libertarianism) NOW it's getting interesting. That was a pure slam on Mitt.
Illegals - Santorum secure border not with storm troopers or amnesty. Perry - 1200 mile border - feds fail. Texas rangers are on it, though. Wall is not a reality. Santorum says English language only will attract Latino voters. (yeah). Perry defends his in-state tuition for immigrants. Bachmann fed by Wolf that it's just more "Dream Act" (evil). Liberals changed the laws and made illegal immigration. Perry says his Dream Act was states rights. Huntsman just accused Perry of treason for saying you can't secure the border. (!!!!) Romney , of course we build a fence and we don't give instate tuition to them. Perry still defending college for immigrants.
Huntsman slams Mitt on changing all his positions. No tea partiers laugh but my son-in-law does.
The newt wants to spend more on security (Iran, Korea, Turkey, Civil War in Mexico, Islam, etc.). Santorum jumps on Paul for blaming ourselves for 9/11. Santorum is anti-Jihadist and not ashamed of American exceptionalism. Paul gets booed for motivation of 9/11. We've bombed all kinds of Muslims. Wouldn't you be annoyed?
Question about protecting Women in Afghanistan and Huntsman says get out of Afghanistan and build our own country. Perry agrees with Hunstman to get out. But continue to have a presence there (hunh?)
[Darn it. I just lost a big chunk of this posting on the debate - pushed the wrong button at the wrong time. Missed all that Ron Paul getting trashed on trying to explain his views on 9/11 after being accused of treason by Santorum. That was interesting.]
Analysis: Bachmann did well with her crowd. Perry did OK. Mitt did OK with the Republican non-tea partiers without totally alienating this crowd. Paul came off crazy even here with his ideas on 9/11 and bringing Austrian economics to the White House. So I still think it's a Perry/Romney game. Huntsman tried to go over the top by accusing Perry of "treason" for believing you couldn't build a fence. Santorum was excited and excitable particularly on Bachmann's little girls getting shots. Cain is planning on bringing humor to the White House. The newt is still odd, staring open-mouthed at Paul for not declaring war on Islam.