Friday, August 7, 2015

Republican Debate Reaction

I listened rather than watched. I did not see Rand Paul's eye roll or any other mannerisms that someone in my Twitter timeline criticized. Based on what I heard,  Kasich and Rubio should be considered the clear winners. (I did not watch or listen to the so-called happy hour debate, so I will take the conventional wisdom at face value; Fiorina won hands down.)

I can't vouch for the accuracy of the chart below, but I'll use it as a starting point to give my reactions to each candidate.

Ben Carson: If the chart is accurate, he has a cult following. He sounded stiff even when he was wasting time cracking jokes during his closing statement. He supported torture, so I hope his candidacy flounders quickly, but it looks as if it won't.

Chris Christie: He did nothing to change his image of being bombastic. Favoring a Reagan-era sized navy and implying that the NSA should expand domestic surveillance, he may have been the most bellicose in both style and substance.

Donald Trump: Trump was Trump and it should have cost him. I suspect that his hard floor is above 10%, so he won't be going away even though he didn't seem to fair well tonight.

Jeb Bush: He made no waves and didn't stumble. It was a lackluster performance but on a stage with ten people that effort was all an alleged favorite needed to live to fight another day

John Kasich: He handled all of the questions well. He sounded knowledgeable and passionate. He's probably running for VP.

Marco Rubio: See Kasich. On a side note, when the older candidates on the panel invoke Reagan, I'd give Rubio bonus points for saying "I was a teenager when Ronald Reagan was President; I was more interested in the red-head sitting two desks ahead of me than I was anything he did. I've moved on; the party should too." On the other hand, I can see why that would be political suicide.

Mike Huckabee: He wants to tax pimps and prostitutes. He took the hardest line on abortion and pretty much made himself unelectable.

Rand Paul: On substance he won the exchange with Christie; he lost it on style. One of his former major advisers is in legal hot water. This candidacy is over.

Scott Walker: I can't remember a single thing he said.

Ted Cruz: He seemed virtually absent until the God question. It seems as if he trying to hang around to get the angry voters who know Trump can't win. I'm surprised at the 50/50 split he earned.


larry kurtz said...

Exactly. Good post, Leo.

M Larson said...

I didn't see or hear. It was a long day and I was not up for the punishment. I need to find clips of it for debate class to help explain fallacies. A college professor said she could probably handle a decades worth of examples of the strawman fallacy.