Debate in Michigan

CNBC hosted the Your Money Your Vote Republican presidential debate on Wednesday night in Michigan. After repeated attempts by media questions intended to raise issues about Cain and the sexual harassment allegations against him, and being repeatedly booed by the audience, the moderators finally went on to the topic that had been promised to be the focus of Wednesday night’s debate:  The economy.

The various candidates seemed to respect the wishes of the crowd, whether through conscious decision beforehand, or by sheer political instincts given the reactions of the crowd to these off-topic questions.

To me the funniest moment in the debate came when Rick Perry said he would shut down three departments of government, and then went to list them:

Rick Perry:  “Education, commerce and uh, uh, um, uh”

Ron Paul: “Oh my.”

Later in the debate, Perry said:

“Energy! That’s the one I couldn’t remember earlier.”

Of course, while Perry suffered from memory lapses, Romney suffered from sheer babbling. In answer to a follow-up question about Romney-care, he said:

“People have a responsibility to receive their own care…”

What?  What does that mean?  How can one not receive one’s own care?

I think he was basically caught flat-footed, and didn’t have a rehearsed answer, so strung together a few syllables. It was utter nonsense, every syllable.

Romney also avoided the direct answer on the Payroll Tax cut question, not wanting to be cornered there either.  Romney is an eel, and I refuse to vote for him under any circumstances.  This lack of courage, and this unabashed pandering that characterizes Romney surely damns his candidacy in my view.  Gingrich also squirmed away on this question.

Michele Bachmann had the right answer ready on the payroll tax, and I was happy to see her confront it bluntly.

Ron Paul and Newt Gingrich had the right answer on student loans, while Rick Perry tried to escape this one too.

Herman Cain simply doesn’t know enough to be President.  His answer on market volatility and uncertainty demonstrated this thoroughly.

Perry needs to go home.  No offense, but Rick, you’re not helping yourself at all. Jon Huntsman was right to call Romney out on the tariff pandering, but at the same time, he didn’t really offer any viable solutions of his own.

The entire debate was interesting and lively, but I would rather see the format of the Cain-Gingrich debates applied to other pairings.  I’d like to see Gingrich take on Perry, and Bachmann take on Romney.  I would like to see Cain take on Paul, and you can pair Huntsman with Santorum, because after all, everybody else needs a night off, and these two guys can’t buy attention.

 

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