November 22, 2011

"Six Issues to Watch for at Tonight’s Republican Debate."

From the WSJ Washington Wire:
1. What to do about defense cuts?...

2. How much has Herman Cain studied?...

3. What about the unrest in Egypt?...

4. Who dislikes Iran the most?...

5. How does Newt Gingrich react to being a front-runner? Since the last debate, talk of a “Gingrich surge” has turned from speculation to a reality, according to recent national polls as well as some surveys in early primary and caucus states. Expect Mr. Gingrich to be standing front and center next to Mitt Romney and to get his fair share of questions. The former House speaker has wooed conservatives this year almost entirely with his debate performances. How will he chide the moderators this time, and is he more willing to attack his rivals?

6. How does Rep. Ron Paul explain being Ron Paul?...

57 comments:

Andy R. said...

I just want to note how exciting it is to watch the dynamic within the Republican party as this primary unfolds. A large group of Republicans realize that these debates are full of joke candidates that have no chance of winning the nomination or beating Obama or being a non-catastrophic President.

On the other hand, there is another large group that not only like and supports some of these joke candidates, but thinks these people actually stand any chance of getting the nomination.

For the smart serious folks in the party, you must find all your fellow traveler nutjobs embarrassing, but for movement solidarity you can't come out and tell them their heroes are nothing but a joke to you. Therefore you have to keep inviting those candidates to the debates to stand on the stage and embarrass the entire party.

Peter Hoh said...

Per Ann Coulter: why does the liberal media "keep pushing alternatives to Mitt Romney" instead of letting conservatives line up behind him?

Scott M said...

Six Issues to Watch for at Tonight’s Republican Debate.

Be honest, AA. There were seven, but you couldn't remember the last one.

Oops.

Scott M said...

why does the liberal media "keep pushing alternatives to Mitt Romney" instead of letting conservatives line up behind him?

The obvious mistake in that statement is that the media has the power to "let" me, which implies a power to prevent me, from doing anything.

pm317 said...

I will add a 7th:

Will they mention Rezko, one of Obama's political Godfathers who got sentenced to 11 years prison term today?

Watch this.

blake said...

Ron Paul needs no explanation.

RONPAUL!!

wv: strati

Ex: In the strati of the columnati, Romney is the candidati, but to the illiterati he's no hawtie.

Dose of Sanity said...

Andy, you aren't helping anyone.

I'd have to say the thing I'm most interested in tonight is Ron Paul. He's polling pretty well in Iowa, will the media give him time tonight?

Richard Dolan said...

Foreign policy is probably the one area where simple Obama-bashing makes the least sense -- not so much as to his 'reset button' rhetoric which has always been fatuous, but his actual policies, most of which continue the Bush policies. It's not accurate to say that the US has adopted a bipartisan foreign policy -- there are large differences in several key areas -- but there is still more bipartisanship in this area than any other. It will be important for the incoming Rep president (be it Romney or someone else) to foster those areas of agreement, and if possible expand them. If he is to be successful, the Rep candidate should start on that process now.

The R candidates should also be wary of repeating O's mistake of decrying polcies that, once elected, he will have no choice but to embrace. Romney, and to a lesser extent Gingrich, have been careful about that. Nixon's campaign in '68 might be a useful model. He certainly had a lot to bash in the foreign policies of JFK-LBJ, but he did so carefully, with an awareness that wild rhetoric would come back to haunt him once elected.

Peter Hoh said...

Scott, fair enough on the objection to "letting." I was trying to shorten what Coulter wrote. Here is the relevant passage:

The mainstream media keep pushing alternatives to Mitt Romney not only because they are terrified of running against him, but also because they want to keep Republicans fighting, allowing Democrats to get a four-month jump on us.

Meanwhile, everyone knows the nominee is going to be Romney.

Scott M said...

In that quote, she pretty much spells out what everyone else is thinking, if not saying out loud. For my own part, I see it as somewhat inevitable and just pray the guy means what he says. There's been some evidence to the contrary, but, frankly...A.B.O.

The little frackus today in Vermont just reinforced that opinion.

edutcher said...

Let us hope Herman is finally listening to someone other than Mark Block.

Andy R. said...

I just want to note how exciting it is to watch the dynamic within the Republican party as this primary unfolds. A large group of Republicans realize that these debates are full of joke candidates that have no chance of winning the nomination or beating Obama or being a non-catastrophic President.

No, the only joke candidate is GodZero, who has had a new one ripped for him by Andrew Malcolm, recently escaped from the LA Times, on the occasion of Zero's abdication of his duties as POTUS, as we entertain the glorious prospect of a 2% growth in GDP under this ignorant, arrogant empty suit. The way things are going, by this time next year, the only joke will be that Hatman, because he still hasn't gotten treatment for all those nightsticks to the head he received Occupying Atlanta, is making the same vapid comments he was the year before.

Peter Hoh said...

Per Ann Coulter: why does the liberal media "keep pushing alternatives to Mitt Romney" instead of letting conservatives line up behind him?

Better question: Why does Ann Coulter insist on doing in '12 what she so roundly derided in '08?

To wit, running a RINO in the false hope he'll draw in the "independents" when, as she noted then, a Conservative who runs on Conservative principles usually wins.

(I know she's got a chubby-chaser thing for Christie, but...)

Andy R. said...

Meanwhile, everyone knows the nominee is going to be Romney.

Hatman and Ann Coulter agree! Will wonders never cease?

Curious George said...

@ Andy R

How is this any different than the Democratic Debates in 2007? Let me refresh your memory:

Biden
Dodd
Edwards
Gravel
Kucinich
Richardson

and of course Obama and Clinton.

Kucinich was in the first eleven debates. Dodd, the first 17. Biden, the first 17.

MadisonMan said...

everyone knows the nominee is going to be Romney.

Everyone knew the nominee was going to be Hillary!

Scott M said...

Everyone knew the nominee was going to be Hillary!

Except Bill Ayers, strangely enough. Is there any bad blood between Ayers and the Clintons?

traditionalguy said...

Will there be empty seats set up for Palin and Trump?

Those two are real conservatives like, what was his name...that 9-9-9 guy who.

Foreign policy is said to be the key test it seems. But Ron Paul wants to revoke Foreign policy and bring the military home.

Cedarford said...

Hat Boy seems to forget his beloved Democrat lineup in 2008.

Two Fruitballs - Gravel and Kuchinich.
One going to jail on corruption, 2 that should be - Edwards, Dodd, Richardson.
2 candidates stupider than Rick Perry - Biden and the abovementioned Richardson.
A boy leader who had no executive experience.
An adult who had more baggage than Newt Gingrich.

prairie wind said...

After four years of Obama making the US weaker, foreign policy experience will be more important than ever for the Republican candidate.

Cedarford said...

Richard Dolan:
Good post!
I agree with you that Gingrich and Romney, especially need to be careful not to claim Obama is the "worst President in the world on national security!" - when of course he isn't. Foreign policy and national security (assuming he marginalizes Holder and the Left even more) are two decent areas in an otherwise abysmal Obama Administration.

Two traps to avoid beyond castigating Obama for policies any elected Republican President would continue:

1. Avoid pandering to the Christian Zionists, in claiming that Israel ought to instruct us on what American foreign policy and our national security positions ought to be. Reject the call of the Israelis and Neocons for more wars of nation-building and adventure.
2. Avoid equating national security with spending whatever money the "Hero Generals, Hero Troops and Hero Defense Constractors" demand. It is not inconsistant with a strong defense to want to cut the fat from the DOD budget and exorbitant personnel costs..or to scale back America's expensive commitments that do not benefit us so much as other countries.

edutcher said...

Andy R. said...

Meanwhile, everyone knows the nominee is going to be Romney.

Hatman and Ann Coulter agree! Will wonders never cease?


Hardly, people who have been the victim of mental disorder often agree.

Miss Coulter, IMHO, has been emotionally traumatized by the long illness and subsequent death of her beloved father.

Medical science is still trying to explain Hatman.

ricpic said...

You got some splainin' to do, Ron Paul, what with your weird fringe kook insistence that America live within its means and stop lookin' fer fun wars to fight!!!

Roger J. said...

I am not sure why the R's keep up with these never ending series of debates. All they do is provide fuel for pundits and weaken the last man/woman standing when they actually have to run as the nominee--I am sure they providing sound bites aplenty for opposition research.

Stop yakking and get on with it.

edwardroyce said...

"6. How does Rep. Ron Paul explain being Ron Paul?..."

Somehow this screams Dave Chapelle to me.

Scott M said...

Somehow this screams Dave Chapelle to me.

It would have to include "that white boy" in order to be Chapelle.

Don't Tread 2012 said...

7. Will Wolf Blitzer be ready to pounce when Newt goes on the offense towards the MSM?

Reprtedly Blitzer is wary of Gingrich's animus towards the press and wants to respond given the chance.

Could be interesting.

wv - nartic

Pirate for 'nordic'.

Bruce Hayden said...

Better question: Why does Ann Coulter insist on doing in '12 what she so roundly derided in '08?

To wit, running a RINO in the false hope he'll draw in the "independents" when, as she noted then, a Conservative who runs on Conservative principles usually wins
.

Because Romney is only a moderate in view of the competition this time. Yes, he is squishy on environmental wackoism. And, yes, he has RomneyCare to his name - but some of the worst parts of it were passed over his veto or added later.

I would suggest that much of his apparent moderation is a result of serving as governor of one of the most liberal states in the union, that had, at the time, overwhelming Democratic majorities in the legislature.

From a social conservative, I would put him to the right of Gingrich, and to the left of Bachmann. In short, in the middle of the pack. Fiscally, the thing that holds him back is his tenure as governor. And, in foreign policy, etc., he seems just fine.

BTW - it was Coulter who pointed out that Romney ran to the right of McCain (and McCain is not all that moderate in a lot of areas).

Bruce Hayden said...

I am not sure why the R's keep up with these never ending series of debates. All they do is provide fuel for pundits and weaken the last man/woman standing when they actually have to run as the nominee.

I would disagree. The debates have done a decent job at winnowing the field of those who are not yet ready for prime time - notably Bachmann, Perry, and Cain. Much better to find that out now, than later.

We have also seen that both Romney and Gingrich are steady in their performances. That is why I think that the race will probably come down to just the two of them. We shall see.

As for Blitzer and Newt - my guess is that it will be a non-contest. First, Blitzer is one of the more innocuous "journalists" doing this sort of thing. Much more fair than many of the others. I also think that Blitzer is smart enough not to try to sand bag Gingrich. Again, we shall see.

Scott M said...

I would disagree. The debates have done a decent job at winnowing the field of those who are not yet ready for prime time - notably Bachmann, Perry, and Cain.

HOWARD JOHNSON IS RIGHT!!!

Roger J. said...

Bruce Hayden--OK, sir, I take your point and it is well made. Now you forced me to reevaluae my position. Damn you :)

I only offer in my own defense, that all of the debate soundbites will come back to confront the ultimate nominee in the most important issue: who can defeat Mr Obama.

Roger J. said...

And Mr Hayden--agree with you analysis of the outcomes. I do think Mr Gingrich can dance circles on Blitzer, and even more so on Mr Obama--Mr Romney is steady, but I fear the Mormon card played against him. If we are after debates as the sine qua non of presidential politics, Mr Gingrich is the guy.

Anyway, time will tell

Scott M said...

Bruce Hayden--OK, sir, I take your point and it is well made. Now you forced me to reevaluae my position. Damn you :)

After what happened between the sparse debates between Hillary and Obama, then between McCain and Obama, I think there's a desire out there to get a really thorough vetting, inasmuch as debates can do so. At the very least, they are fertile ground for unscripted/unrehearsed moments where we might get to see the real person inside the politician power armor.

Roger J. said...

Scott--agree also, but it is sad commentary to think that "debates" as currently staged, moderated by idiots, is what will determine our president is atrocious--however, it is what it is--debates as the equivalent of gladitorial combat.

no wonder our republic is fucked.

Scott M said...

Okay, RJ, but what's the alternative outside actual gladiatorial combat?

Roger J. said...

Scott: dont know--the cynic in me suggests pistols at 40 feet. In re your point, the pundit class and dominated in the MSM is clearly not up to the task. I take your point on vetting in an open forum, and think that is good.

My suggestion would be to can the moderator, except for time keeping purposes, and let the individuals go at it a la the Lincoln Douglass debates where there was no moderator.

And of course, I am assuming the American public will pay enough attention to arrive at their own conclusions. That is a fabulist construct on my part, I fear.

Scott M said...

My suggestion would be to can the moderator, except for time keeping purposes, and let the individuals go at it a la the Lincoln Douglass debates where there was no moderator.

That would be priceless once we get it down to one-each per party.

E.M. Davis said...

For the smart serious folks in the party, you must find all your fellow traveler nutjobs embarrassing, but for movement solidarity you can't come out and tell them their heroes are nothing but a joke to you. Therefore you have to keep inviting those candidates to the debates to stand on the stage and embarrass the entire party.

Curious to see how much seriousity there would be on the dais if this were a Democratic Party debate.

Roger J. said...

Of course we could let Mr Obama stand on the stage sans teleprompter and embarass the entire country.

E.M. Davis said...

everyone knows the nominee is going to be Romney.

I shall heretofore refer to Mitt as THE ROMINEEY!

Jason (the commenter) said...

2. How much has Herman Cain studied?...

Not enough. During the Saturday debates he flubbed a question on segregation and showed a lack of understanding on the roll of the Supreme Court.

When he HAS studied something he points it out, making it obvious to everyone that he knows only the most basic facts.

Carol_Herman said...

Not another debate?

Haven't these 8 jerks run out of audience? Or do the same people just show up?

There are two reasons this show keeps going. ONE: You don't have to pay for an admission ticket. It doesn't even cost you a postage stamp ... like Dancing With The Stars would ... where you were hoping to get in.

And, TWO. Each candidate knows they can pick up "something." Even if it's only 1% ... It's a chip to spend inside the republican party. But it's only "worth it" if Obama loses the election.

My bet? Donald Trump is betting against them all. He sees the "end of season." And, you bet. He's gonna run. But first? He has to make that sound interesting.

Oh, yeah. Keep watching. Let's see how Romney gets nominated.

Let's see if Romney actually divulges a real opinion.

phx said...

Huntsman.

Love said...

This is the bigoted moron many here support as their next Presidential candidate:

Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain on Friday said he was initially uncomfortable when assigned a surgeon with a foreign name. Cain expressed his concern during an appearance at the Holy Land Experience, a Biblically-themed amusement park in Orlando, telling the audience that a surgeon who had once treated him for cancer was named "Dr. Abdallah."

"I said to his physician assistant, I said, 'That sounds foreign, not that I had anything against foreign doctors, but it sounded too foreign," said Cain to the audience, according to Yahoo! News. "She said, 'He's from Lebanon.' Oh, Lebanon! My mind immediately started thinking, wait a minute, maybe his religious persuasion is different than mine! She could see the look on my face and she said, 'Don't worry, Mr. Cain, he's a Christian from Lebanon."

"Hallelujah!" said Cain. "Thank God!"

Love said...

Roger J. "Of course we could let Mr Obama stand on the stage sans teleprompter and embarass the entire country."

The President has been on stage during important debates on many occasion, and has always done quite well.

The wingnut teleprompter drivel is just that...drivel.

edutcher said...

Love said...

Roger J. "Of course we could let Mr Obama stand on the stage sans teleprompter and embarass the entire country."

The President has been on stage during important debates on many occasion, and has always done quite well.

The wingnut teleprompter drivel is just that...drivel.


POTUS thinks they speak Austrian in Vienna, the InterContinental Railroad bound this country together in 1869, the US Army liberated Auschwitz, and the Marine Corps' medics, provided by the US Navy, are Corpsemen.

No, the TOTUS thing is pure illusion.

Michael Haz said...

I'm looking forward to that fleeting moment when Wolf Blitzer believes that he is smarter than Newt Gingrich.

phx said...

I saw somewhere Newt's IQ was measured in the 120's.

Joe Schmoe said...

I fully support tons of debates. I just don't like them this far from the election. Politicians spend way more time campaigning than governing. So even though I agree with the premise, I'd rather watch the shocking meat video than tonight's debate.

Titus said...

The introductions to these debates are full of drama. They are horrible.

Think Tanks-now that's a job that contributes to the economy.

tits.

Titus said...

Newt's fat.

Titus said...

I would do the Jersey Boy singer.

They would never sing the national anthem at a demorat debate.

Alan said...

7. What in the hell was newt Gingrich doing promoting education in conjunction with people who have no business whatsoever influencing America's youth? That's like inviting Hamas to Mideast peace talks.

Alan said...

Albeit far less lethal.

Eric said...

POTUS thinks they speak Austrian in Vienna, the InterContinental Railroad bound this country together in 1869, the US Army liberated Auschwitz, and the Marine Corps' medics, provided by the US Navy, are Corpsemen.

You forgot 57 states.

Yeah, this guy isn't the sharpest tooth on the saw.

Love said...

So now, after fawning after Palin, Paul, Cain, and anybody else other tha the Presient, you're on to Newt?

Is there an iota of honesty or integrity among this group?

Newt?

Really?

Love said...

ewt Gingrich tonight said at an address at Harvard that child work laws "entrap" poor children into poverty - and suggested that a better way to handle failing schools is to fire the janitors, hire the local students and let them get paid for upkeep.

And you idiots aare going to vote for this asshhat?

Bruce Hayden said...

And you idiots aare going to vote for this asshhat?

I think he also pointed out that that is what the Japanese and Chinese do, and that their educational outcomes seem to be superior to ours. It also ties into his suggestion that we aren't imbuing our children with a decent work ethic (as evidenced by the Occupiers, for example).

BTW - this sort of posting of yours doesn't win arguments here, but rather makes you the laughing stock of most of the readers here, and are probably in even lower regard than even J is.

The assumption is that you use such language because you lack both facts and logic. While this may not be true, it is the impression you leave us with.

Alan said...

Kids doing cleanup chores at school isn't a bad idea. How much cleaning can one janitor do compared to, say, just one classroom full of kids?

School is supposed to teach stuff. School chore time serves as an ongoing lesson in the teamwork ethic.

And it won't hurt the teachers to empty the trash can in the staff room.