The first debate among Republicans at Quicken Loans Arena had just ended and it was the talk of social network. An earlier debate was held with Rick Perry, Rick Santorum, Governor Jindal and others who were not chosen for the main debate had their chance to present themselves. In that debate, Santorum came off a bit weak, Jindal seemed scripted and Perry flubbed by saying Ronald Raven instead of Ronald Reagan. The only one who was poised, calm and addressed the issues directly was the only female candidate, Carly Fiorina.
In the main debate event, Trump raised his hand to a question asking if anyone present would not run as an independent nor support the Republican nominee. He received boos from the audience for this. Many worry that he will cause Republicans to lose the debate by running as an independent. Rand Paul then interjected attacking Trump criticizing his donations to Clinton and other politicians. It seemed Rand Paul was trying to get Trump and Christ Christie to lose their temper since he would do something similar later during the debate. During an exchange, Rand Paul interjected as Trump had finished speaking on Obamacare and Trump replied, “I don’t think you heard me. You’re having a bad time tonight.”
Jeb Bush who is expected to be the nominee came off as pale and insecure in his replies. He stuttered a lot and was meandering in many of his replies. Both Marco Rubio and Ted Cruz were more articulate and kept their temperament in check. Chris Christie also did well but was caught off guard when Rand Paul told him that he hugged Obama and he could go hug him again. Mike Hucklebee was also good, but he came across as too theocratic. John Kasick of Ohio was meandered a bit, and seemed to be wishy washy on same-sex marriage and took advantage of the fact that the debate was in his home state. Ben Carson did not address questions directly and was too docile. However, he gave some nice replies regarding divisions, race, and a funny closing. Scott Walker reinforced his views that he is pro-life and was the first to defund Planned Parenthood. However, he was not strong in other areas. Donald Trump was bombastic but toned down a bit. He was clearly unprepared and just repeated the same things he had since first announcing his candidacy. Rand Paul was a bit scripted, raising his voice to get attention but really did not present any plans. He seemed to be the one looking to attack others on the panel.
I was hoping to see a better debate. Much was expected from Trump, but he seemed to have bombed. Chris Christie was also not “himself” on the debate. I was expecting him and Trump to go at it at some point, but nothing happened. The debate was too controlled by moderators. Some candidates were focused on more than others, and not all received the same questions. The audience was left wondering where the candidates who were not asked specific questions stand on those questions.