As I turn on the TV, I see the newt pontificating on tax policy and Cain look like he's been squirming a little. This is supposed to be "beat up on Herman" night. Then Bachmann comes on a little shrilly about repealing the tax code and making the poor people pay. And Perry seems to be on the stump preachin' up the drill-baby-drill! (and we thought we would miss Sarah).
And it's beat up on Mitt night too with Santorum going after him. Mitt defends his time. Santorum goes after Mitt and Mitt defends himself pretty well doubling down on Romneycare. Anderson Cooper invites the newt to go after Mitt and newt waxes philosophical - (what an elder statesman he thinks he is!) The newt calls Mitt dishonest and Mitt makes the newt back off. (The newt did support a mandate when the Heritage Foundation proposed it against Hillarycare).
Twitter question: What's the alternative to Obamacare? Paul doesn't want any part of it. It's all government and we should be able to opt out our government medicine (I think he means opt out of government pretty much on everything). Cain- HR-3400 is a great place to start. Perry says Texas is best health care in the world all the problems are the fault of the border. Perry accuses Romney of hiring illegals. Mitt and Rick go bad neighbor on each other. (Oh, my heck!) Mitt shuts him down and goes mean on Perry's Dream Act. Perry says Mitt's dishonest about illegals working for him. Perry interrupts and Mitt says a President has to listen. And he goes all e-verify on Perry.
Ya know. It's starting to look a little more like Reality TV. Not sure that's a good thing.
Cain still wants to build a fence and no more jokes. Perry wants strategic fencing and boots on the ground and predator drones. He says Iranians are using drug cartels to infiltrate. Bachmann attacks the President's family as illegal aliens. And she will enforce English as the official language. Perry comes back feisty tonight. Romney sticks up for all on the stage they they like legal aliens (even if Bachmann wants to make them speak English). Perry goes on Mitt again for his contractors. Mitt calls on the audience. Latino asks a question as to why the legals would ever want to be Republicans. The newt pontificates. (That'll do it.) Paul thinks there is some anti-immigrant symbolism in the fence (well, he's on the right track). He notes discrimination in the courts (out of the blue.) Cain is still bold on his plan.
Fourteenth Amendment question dodged by Perry. He's all about energy (Drill-baby-drill or 9-9-9? It's catchy). But Perry does not want to repeal the 14th Amendment (points there). Bachmann hates anchor babies. (I thought she liked kids.) She says deal with it legislatively not by repeal. Santorum going faith family on the Latinos (fellow Catholics, I guess).
Yucca Mountain? The newt says it's too political. Paul says the government shouldn't be subsidizing energy. (No rural electrification, I guess). Perry now is agreeing with Mitt on states rights. ("nucular") Goes all tenth amendment on us. (He's just making it up as he goes.)
Perry interrupts Santorum now. Santorum accuses Cain and everybody as flip-flopping on bail-outs. Now it's the Rick & Rick Show. Romney's all pro-market (well, duh).
Bachmann - "Mom's, hold to your houses!" Cain stands by his Occupy movement people to go get a job. Paul goes all "fed reserve" on Cain.
On Faith. Santorum pretty decent. Gingrich - didn't make any sense. Anderson on Perry to repudiate and Perry can't because he's the son of a tenant farmer (hunh?) Romney - not going to worry about it. But then he does.
Paul wants to abolish Department of the Interior along with a bunch of others? Eh?
Now Perry wants to defund the UN. (As bad as the Palestinian activities there, isn't talk better than bombs?)
Mitt- cut the federal employees by 10% through attrition (could be worse) and tie their pay to the non-government (uh, we already have those laws and Congress keeps failing to fund us to meet the private sector equivalence).
Paul asks his fellow Republicans to condemn Reagan for Iran-Contra (every now and then, I kinda like him).
Best post-debate analysis is by James Fallows.
|Bishop Romney calms a very angry Scoutmaster