16 February 2016

Republican National debate 2-13-16 // I Watched So You Don’t Have To - SC Edition

This debate was hosted by the DNC wing of CBS news.  Not a lot to say about the moderators other than I believe that I saw a few ready for Hillary buttons on the lapels but I could have been wrong.
I have noticed a trend in the last 2 debates that I hope the RNC addresses fast. The audience is becoming part of the debate.  Now not only the moderators making news and are an active participants in the debates, the audience is becoming an unrealistic and at times ridiculous cheering section for the candidates.  As witnessed on Saturday the boos and cheers are getting to be a joke and the campaigns are trying to use them their advantage.  These should be public forums for the most important office in the world not a taping of the price is right.  Other than that it was nice to see only 6 candidates on the stage.
Moreover, with the death of Antonin Scalia this election is extremely important to the future of the country.  Most candidates on the stage understand this, one I really don’t’ think has the integrity to make that call.

But I digress…..

Trump;  He is now the Old Country Buffet of Word Salad:  For the first 2 sentences of this debate I thought to myself, Trump sounds good tonight.   Then he dives off the deep end. Anger is not leadership and Trump should know this by now. But when you have nothing to specific to offer you have to do something up there so yelling works for him.  Trumps idea of building consensus is everybody has to agree with him on everything.  Which really won’t work with a divided congress or a congress of the same party not really sure which party Trump is but his agree with me or else administration is not going to work.  As this gets closer Trump and if Trump is the nominee he needs to stop yelling and start getting specific or we as a party are done.  Trump really hit the Bush family.  He went from calling George W knowing 9-11 was going to happen and did nothing to stop it, to saying Jeb’s mother should be the one running, to Jeb just being a loser and a liar. But to Trump everybody is a liar and a loser. It’s getting old and tired.  Just like his “just trust me it’s going to be great” is getting hollow.  Best line for Trump is when he called Reagan “Somewhat Conservative”  That alone is a great insight into Trump. Just like he said the being conservative is to conserve. Let's face it he's not a conservative.  He’s still the guy to beat though. However, do we really want trump picking Supreme Court Justices?  I don’t!  This was Trumps worst night and these debates are getting more important and more people are watch so this does not bode well for him. 

Cruz; concise, direct, principled:  Cruz was interrupted more by the moderator than any other candidate which is telling. I still feel that Cruz is the greatest threat to the establishment in both parties.  Where the establishment would rather have a president Trump just so they wouldn't have to deal with a president Cruz. Cruz and Rubio went at it on immigration…again.  Even I’m getting tired of it.  Cruz must see an opening with Rubio but Rubio was on his game Saturday night so his attack fell short.  Cruz played it safe by staying out of most of the clashes with Trump and Bush.  However, will his answers be enough to stand out of the shouting match that was Saturday night?  Cruz tried to explain his flat tax plan with little effect.  It’s not a VAT which taxes every level of production but flat tax which is great but unlikely to pass.  But it’s a start.  Cruz would be the best person to nominate a justice.  Without a doubt he has the most experience with the SC and would make the decision based on original intent not the popular whims of the day by the masses.  In the end Cruz had a good night by not having a bad night.  Even though Trump and Rubio called Cruz a liar over and over and over I don’t think it will stick.  Cruz needs a strong ground game to beat Trump's popularity .  So far he won Iowa, came in third in NH spending less than a million so he’s poised to finish strong in SC. Hopefully Super Tuesday will take some of the wind out of Trump's sails.

Rubio; Calm, strong, knowledgeable:  Rubio redeemed himself in the eyes of the establishment on Saturday.  He proved he can do this without acting like a little kid’s notice me, notice me type of thing.  He hit Cruz hard and silenced Trumps attack on Bush with a simple I was glad Bush was in office instead of Gore when 9-11 happened.  I am too.  Rubio has a family first tax plan.  Not sure what that means but that’s the way Rubio is selling it.  Problem is no one is going to remember specific policies when Trump is yelling at everybody.  That’s Trumps plan but as a voter we should be demanding better and Rubio is trying to act like he wants this job.  Rubio gave Bush a run for his money on Saturday, literally establishment donors are probably scratching their heads wondering who to give money to, Bush or Rubio?   Bush was weak until about 3 weeks ago and Rubio was strong until 2 weeks ago.  What’s a donor to do?  Rubio would do well against Hillary or Sanders.  He still adds to the debates and it would be a Yuge loss if he dropped.  I don’t see that happening and perhaps Rubio is hoping for a brokered convention if he can’t get enough delegates to win outright.  I would be fine with a President Rubio. 

Bush; Clear, Concise, dare I say strong:  Oh Brother Where Art thou?  This was the Jeb every establishment republican was looking for.  My guess is there was a lot of questions like, where was this Jeb 3 months ago? Or why couldn’t he be like this from the beginning? Well running for 5th is hard work so give him a break.  Jeb is hoping to finish in the top 3 in SC. If he doesn’t he’s all but done.  Oh he’ll be around for a while but Jeb and Mr. Krabs are fighting for last place or a brokered convention.  Jeb took it to Trump and defended himself very well to the point where Trump blamed pretty much everything on his brother or the audience.  However, sticking up for your brother is what anyone would do.  Leadership is different, where Jeb was even tempered and clear of thought, Trump looked and acted pissed off.  Jeb won that round and made Trump look like a loser.  Oh he stammered every once and while but even those were not really noticeable on Saturday.  At this point I think Jeb would be well against Hillary (prisoner 11271). He will most likely not get the chance but as some ones VP, maybe????  VP Jeb????  Nah…..

Carson; Just there:  This was probably the last time we will see Carson the candidate. I’m okay with that.  Of all the outsider candidates Carson added the most dignity to the race.  However, at some point he needs to drop (like next Sunday) and support Cruz.  Carson gets the oh we forgot you were still on the stage type of questions. Where it must frustrate him but he has to see it’s very close to the time to pull the plug and call time of death to his candidacy.  Get the Doctor reference?  Just wanted to see if your still reading this stuff?  I’m telling you Carson would make a great director of HHS or the VA.

Mr Krabs: Maybe he has a tick, I don’t’ know but it drives me crazy:  According to him if he was president it would be roses and lollipops and everybody would get along and there would be no partisanship just love.  Funny thing was that every time Bush and Trump went at it the moderators went to Mr. Krabs for his thoughts on the fighting.  Why? I don’t know nor to I care what he thinks about Bush and Trump fighting.  Neither do millions of other people.  Out in a month or two. I hope.

Yuge Winner: Jeb (that’s a 2 in a row)
Winner : Cruz, Rubio
Loser: Carson, Mr. Krabs
Yuge Loser: Trump

The Below Link is an important one that I want to bring to your attention.
This link compiled every tax proposal that this season’s presidential candidates have offered during the campaign. 
I urge you to check this out as we get closer to the election. It's Yuge! 

Republican National Debate 2-6-2016 // I watched so you don’t have to // Special Sunday Edition

 This was an ABC hosted debate and I have to say it started out very awkward.  Carson couldn’t hear his name being called so he stood there on camera waiting.  You could see the production people trying to usher him out but he just stood there while the other candidates passed him up as they walked out. It worked itself out of course but it was awkward.   I’ll also note that the moderators were terrible in general.  They tried on 4 separate occasions to get the candidate on record to say they would start a war with North Korea, round up illegals and tax the rich and oh who likes torture?  All four attempts failed but to me it was obvious what they were trying to do.
But anyway….

Trump: Calm, I’m the guy but still word salad as a whole:  Trump is getting to be a better debater. However, he showed he really cannot take any sort of criticism at all.  Trump was booed on several occasions and he turned around and called the whole audience a bunch of lobbyist. Really?  Trump failed to quiet down Bush as they went at it over eminent domain.  Which Trump loves by the way.  He loves it when the government takes your property and uses it for public use, at a fair price mind you. Yeah right, fair price. So in a Trump administration if he wants something he’s going to take it. Trump’s definition of conservatism is to conserve was puzzling to me?? So he’s not rally a conservative he just plays one on TV. Trump lost big time to Cruz in Iowa and if he doesn’t get his act together he’s going to lose more.  He just can’t hold rallies and expect to win the nomination. He needs a ground game and fast. Trump Still may do very well as this race goes on but he’s shown he can be beat and he can be rattled.  If he wins on Tuesday and wins in South Carolina this could be all his.

Bush: Confidante, reserved and less awkward:  Bush has a great night last night.  He took it to Trump in the most effective way he has done compared to all the other debates.  He prodded Trump to go off and then just shut up and he let Trump dig himself into a whole.  I think Bush showed very well to the voters but more importantly the donors who were getting ready to jump ship for Rubio. But since Rubio tanked last night that may change (more on that later).  If Bush did this well earlier on he may be in the top 2 or 3 candidates now.  However, this may be too little too late for Bush. At this point it’s all about voters and donors and I don’t think Bush has enough of either to make it past Super Tuesday.

Carson: At this point Carson has about a month and a half left in his campaign and he’s starting to look like he knows it. He was barely called on in the last 2 debates and when he was called on he really didn’t add to the conversation.  I still think which ever republican wins as the next president they should make Carson director of HHS.

 Cruz: Strong, steady, measured, played it safe:  Cruz is coming off a yuge win in IOWA and yesterday he tried to act like the front runner.  Cruz was concise in his answers and didn’t attack any other candidate last night.  He gave detailed answered on immigration and foreign policy. The moderators didn’t like that so there was not a lot of follow ups or trying to get other candidates to attack Cruz’s positions. I don’t think Cruz will win New Hampshire but a strong top 3 would put him good position going forward.   

Rubio: Yea! He slowed down: Rubio completely failed last night.  Christie buried him and all Rubio could do was repeat himself over and over, which made him look completely unprepared and weak.  Rubio tried to deflect his record by talking about Obama’s and Christie nailed him on it over and over. Rubio showed real weakness and inexperience for the first time in this entire contest and I’m sure it gave a lot of donors pause let along voters.  If Rubio is going to be the establishment candidate he has to do a lot better in fending off attacks as this race heats up. Because if this was the first debate you watched and you saw how Rubio handled himself last night then you may be thinking of supporting another candidate.  This is a teachable moment and I hope Rubio learns well from it. 

Mr. Krabs: Mr. Reasonable, Mr. Moderate, HANDS:  Hey I’m a nice guy so vote for me. Hey I’m a moderate so vote for me.  Hey NO, sorry I will not vote for you. Another guy who has about a month or two left in his campaign. 

Christie: Firm, relaxed, comfortable: Christie totally succeeded in taking down Rubio last night. All Christie had to say was “See, there he goes again repeating himself without answering the question” Rubio responded by walking directly into the punch each and every time.  I don’t think Christie gained any votes last night but he did show that Rubio is beatable.  Hillary would use the same line of attack at Rubio’s lack of experience and Rubio would lose.  Christie may be the in it a little longer than Mr. Krabs but I don’t see him lasting past Super Tuesday.

It is still is a Trump, Cruz and Rubio race.

Big Winner: Bush
Winner: Cruz, Christie, Trump
Loser: Mr. Crabs, Carson
Big Loser: Rubio

Illinois Primary is March 15th  

Until the next time…..