Thursday, September 17, 2015

My Thoughts on CNN GOP Debate

Published by TheBlazeNow 
Published on Sep 16, 2015

John R. Houk
© September 17, 2015

I DVRed the CNN GOP debate and watched it this morning. Upon my quick perusal online and on Cable News shows I got the feeling political pundits are giving Carly Fiorina the top spot and that the Dems are calling the debate a farce. Frankly I could care less what Dems think because in all probability the Dems won’t be involved in GOP Primaries and Caucuses. (Although the Dems have a reputation for registering the likes of Mickey Mouse, dead Uncle Joe, dead Aunt Jane, non-citizen/non-registered Illegal Aliens and so forth.)

Here is the order I felt debate winners should have went:

1)    Carly Fiorina

2)    John Kasich

3)    Marco Rubio

4)    Mike Huckabee

5)    Donald Trump

6)    Chris Christie

7)    Ted Cruz

8)    Ben Carson

9)    Scott Walker

10) Jeb Bush

11) Rand Paul

In full disclosure, I don’t think Donald Trump would be an effective President; HOWEVER Mr. Trump’s issue that rings with me is immigration (though maybe not quite as harsh). And frankly Trump’s make America strong and turn the screws to avoid bad deals ranks high with me as well (e.g. Obamacare & Iran Nuke Deal). For volumes of other issues (social & political) I have the feeling Mr. Trump could rub various Conservatives of political power the wrong way thus stalling legislation more than moving legislation along.

I ranked Carly Fiorina first because she displayed strength amongst the big boys, had a specific agenda to make America strong and respected again all surrounded with forthright confidence. I could care less that Ms. Fiorina is a woman. As a candidate she came across as resolute.

I’m a little surprised that John Kasich was given such a low rank by the pundit experts and the various unscientific polls I viewed on the Internet. I felt has campaign thoughts were very well reasoned. For example he wouldn’t simply toss out the Iran Nuke Deal but follow through the so-called snap-back stipulations of the deal when Iran fails on its part (AND MAKE NO MISTAKE – IRAN HAS NO INTENTION OF HONORING the Obama-Kerry deal). Frankly the Kasich reasoning will play better with our European allies who still enjoy our involvement in NATO yet starving for the potential oil Iran might offer.

Marco Rubio provided the best Conservative response among the U.S. Senators that went past the right words but included reasoned passion.

Mike Huckabee didn’t have a lot of time to make some political points, BUT the air time he managed to get was awesome. He was a good Conservative while avoiding the mutual insults that Donald Trump managed to drag his closest rivals into.

I ranked Trump after Huckabee. Let’s be honest. Trump is not number one in the polls because of details, but rather for giving voice to Americans weary of Obama’s screw-ups, immigration policies, all white people are evil – especially cops (e.g. Federal investigation in Ferguson aimed at police rather than an 18 year old thug), the ineffective debacle Americans call Obamacare and Executive Orders that by-pass Congress in a questionable Constitutional manner (e.g. Iran Nuke Deal). Even if Trump couldn’t pull off half of what he says he will do, because he says it, if nominated I will vote for him. In the GOP Primary in my State I’ll be voting for someone else.

I actually liked what Chris Christie said, but there something I can’t put my finger on that seems amenable to the Republican Establishment. Yet I’d vote for him if he was the nominee.

Ted Cruz was my early favorite when he first announced his candidacy for POTUS. AND I still like Senator Cruz a lot; however his debate performance looked more like campaign ad paid for and approved by Ted Cruz for President.

Ben Carson is another person I’d vote for if he won the nomination; however I sense this very nice guy’s neurosurgeon experience may not be enough to run the Executive Branch of the United States of America.

I like Scott Walker but his debate last night was not memorable.

If Jeb Bush won the nomination I’d vote for him. YET Jeb is too friendly on illegal immigrants and he is supportive of federally mandated Common Core. Although I felt the latter years of Jeb’s brother’s policy decisions too often was friendly with Muslims that were more Salafists than a notion of peaceful (e.g. CAIR), President George W. Bush was a hero in projecting strength after 9/11. He invaded Afghanistan for harboring al Qaeda and Usama bin Laden. Even though the intelligence was off on Iraq, G.W. Bush didn’t take chances and toppled a vicious dictator in Saddam Hussein. THE ONLY reason ISIS/Daesh became an Islamic terrorist power in Iraq and Syria has nothing to do with invading Iraq but rather with Obama pulling out of Iraq lock, stock and barrel. Iraq’s religious schism and the distrust of Iraqi Kurds of Arab Sunnis and Shias rise ripe for government disintegration.

I love Senator Rand Paul’s domestic agenda and his anti-abortion stand. However, his national policies of pseudo-isolationism is a Libertarian path that will result in the same outcomes that President Barack Hussein Obama has led America.

Well those are my two cents that I got a feeling a lot of my fellow Conservatives will find fault with; however November 2016 is far off still and the number of candidates will be whittled down substantially especially after the early Primaries and Caucuses.

Here are some polls and/or rankings from either an unscientific Internet vote or a political pundit.

Here is the complete list of results from the Newsmax poll (as of 2:15 PM CT):
Donald Trump 46.26%
Carly Fiorina 20.11%
Sen. Marco Rubio 9.32%
Dr. Ben Carson 9.22%
Sen. Ted Cruz 5.67%
Gov. John Kasich 3.10%
Gov. Chris Christie 2.14%
Gov. Jeb Bush 1.45%
Sen. Rand Paul 1.27%
Gov. Mike Huckabee 1.04%
Gov. Scott Walker 0.41% (Trump Is Runaway Debate Winner Newsmax Poll; By Cathy Burke; Newsmax; 9/17/15 08:40 AM) 


The candidates? Here's how I'd [i.e. Bobby Eberle] rank them... not necessarily on substance (especially Bush) but rather how they did last night and whether their performance will tend to help them. 
 1. Carly Fiorina -- Easy Pick. She won.
2. Marco Rubio -- Passionate answers and showed a grasp of the issues
3. Ted Cruz -- Needs to work on his delivery, but every single answer is the best.
4. Jeb Bush -- He was more energetic, and people will see it and his name, and he'll likely move up.
5. Chris Christie -- Answered everything well.
6. Mike Huckabee -- Great answers, just limited time.
7. Donald Trump -- He went in as the frontrunner and didn't hurt himself. However, he's going to need to add more substance going forward.
8. Ben Carson
9. Scott Walker
10. John Kasich
11. Rand Paul (GOP Candidates Spar for Three Hours... But Who Won? By Bobby Eberle; GOP USA; 9/17/15 7:13 am)


Carly Fiorina was the victor by acclamation, having clearly done her homework. It seemed as if she were giving a verbal PowerPoint presentation full of solid information and proposals for actually doing something. She clearly showed she belonged at the prime time debate. 
 But, contrary to Beltway groupthink, we think Marco Rubio outshined her. Rather than having crammed for an exam, policy was second nature to him. He was so familiar with the material, he did more than recite it — he showed he’d be comfortable leading with it. His mastery of issues put him head and shoulders above anyone else on the stage last night. (GOP Debate Overview and Highlights; By Mark Alexander and Nate Jackson; The Patriot Post; 9/17/15)


The Winners: 
 Marco Rubio and Carly Fiorina were the two standouts in Wednesday’s debate. 
 Rubio brought an appealing mix of the common touch and tough talk on foreign policy to the debate stage. Unlike some other candidates, he didn’t seem like he was elbowing his way into the debate, so it “felt” like he was a featured speaker. He sounded like the grownup in the room when he tussled with Trump on foreign policy. … 
 Fiorina was smart and scrappy. Her Planned Parenthood screed was fantastic. She rightly redirected the focus away from the faux “women’s healthcare” straw man (straw woman?) to the real issue of Planned Parenthood selling chopped-up babies. Other candidates ought to take note. Carly does need to soften her edges a bit because she tends to dial it up to harsh and stay there. 
 Middle of the Pack: 
 Ted Cruz was brilliant and in command of the facts … 
 Mike Huckabee’s shining moment was his defense of religious liberty. He noted that GITMO prisoners are afforded more religious accommodations than county clerks in Kentucky. He has a point. 
 Chris Christie also had a good night and he landed some solid blows in Trump’s direction. But he was crowded out by Carly and Rubio … 
 Walker had some good moments, but not enough of them. I honestly do not remember one thing he said. 
 Jeb Bush didn’t do anything to help himself in this debate, but he wasn’t as terrible as he could have been and didn’t cede any of his (already shaky) ground.  ... 
 The Losers: 
 Ben Carson was out of his element. Completely. … 
 Donald Trump, as usual, was boorish and didn’t give substantive answers to important questions. … 
 Rand Paul tried to salvage his floundering campaign with appeals to the hardcore libertarians who supported his father, but he was too wonky and not likable. 
 John Kasich’s answers on foreign policy were bizarre. He seriously defended Obama’s Iran deal. And then he didn’t. Or did he? Who knows? He said two things that are in conflict: a) We shouldn’t trust the Iranians and b) if they cheat, the sanctions should be lifted. … [Blog Editor: I stand with my understanding of Kasich and the Iran Nuke Deal. See above.] 
 … (Two Winners and Four Losers in CNN’s GOP Debate; By Paula Bolyard; PJ MediaPJ Tatler; 9/17/15 12:46 am)


Thank you, we have already counted your vote. 
 Donald Trump 36.66% 

Carly Fiorina 30.32% 

Marco Rubio 12.41% 

Ben Carson 6.25%  

Chris Christie 3.92% 

Jeb Bush 3.26% 

Rand Paul 2.24% 

John Kasich 1.87% 

Ted Cruz 1.87%  

Mike Huckabee 0.75% 

Scott Walker 0.45% (Who do you think won the CNN GOP debate? BY CNN WIRES; FOX2now – St. Louis; 9/17/15 9:38 AM [Continuous Poll as of 2:57 PM CT])


Here is how I [i.e. Brian] would rate the debate performances: 
 1. Carly Fiorina – I would say Fiorina helped herself the most. She was very articulate and was able multiple times to reel off a litany of specifics on various subjects. She came across as tough and determined. You could see how she could be the person in the Oval Office. I will be shocked if Fiorina does not come out of this debate with a huge boost in the polls. 
 2. Chris Christie – He was very good tonight, and should get a boost in the polls off of this performance. He was direct and tough, taking on several of his fellow-candidates on issues. 
 3. Marco Rubio – While he comes across too much as if he is lecturing everyone, Rubio had a good night, focusing on Foreign Policy. He got a lot of time to talk, which should mean more of a lasting impression. 
 4. Donald Trump – Trump did not really get hurt badly in this debate. I thought he might get really beaten up with everyone gunning for him. But he held his own, made no major gaffes, and should remain a strong candidate. A case could be made for him to be much higher in the debate ranking simply because, as the front-runner, he did no harm. 
 5. Ted Cruz – He was very good – but got shorted on time. When he did speak, he clearly set himself forth as the true conservative on the stage. 
 6. Jeb Bush – He had some good moments, but still came across as trying to hard sometimes in the exchanges with Donald Trump. But this was better than his first debate. 
 7. Rand Paul – He got quite a bit of time to talk and he did well at articulating his more libertarian philosophy. I don’t think it will mean much of a boot in the polls, but he was better tonight than in the first debate. 
 8. John Kasich – He didn’t get much time to talk and really did nothing to distinguish himself in this debate. He needed to do that. 
 9. Mike Huckabee – He also didn’t get much talking time, and when he did, he didn’t really connect with what he was saying. He needed to have a “Wow” moment. 
 10. Scott Walker – I don’t know what has happened to Walker. He seemed so detached and really does not connect with his answers. I think he did himself no good with this debate. 
 11. Ben Carson – This really shocks me. But Carson truly hurt himself with this debate performance. I don’t know how much play it will get, but Ben Carson actually said George W. Bush should not have attacked Afghanistan after September 11, 2001. … (Rating the Candidates from the CNN GOP Presidential Debate: Fiorina Shines, Trump Holds His Own, Carson Stumbles; Posted by Brian; Freedom’s Lighthouse; 9/17/15)


Current U.S. Polling
September 16, 2015 
 Executive Summary 
  Gravis Marketing, a nonpartisan research firm, conducted a random survey of 1,337 registered Republican voters across the U.S. regarding the performance and opinions of the Republicans that took place in the first Republican Primary debate. The poll has a margin of error of ± 3%. The total may not round to 100% because of rounding. The polls were conducted using IVR technology and weighted by gender. The poll was conducted for One America News Network. 

Who do you think won the debate? 
 Photo OANN Poll of CBN GOP Debate
 … (One America News/Gravis Marketing Post Debate; By Doug Kaplan; Scribd.; 9/17/15) [Hat Tip: PJ Tatler]

JRH 9/17/15

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