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Debate Wrap Up

And it's over.

GOP Presidential Candidates -- Video Highlights
A high-spirited debate Thursday night at the Reagan Library in California. Watch an AP Video report. (AFP/Getty)

In the first Republican presidential debate of the 2008 race, the ten Republican presidential candidates engaged in a high-spirited debate although none of them were willing to directly criticize each other or President George W. Bush.

I'll have a list of winners and losers tomorrow on The Fix -- after I watch the debate a time or two more and study the transcript -- but here are my initial thoughts. Take these with a grain of salt. I have been typing furiously for the past 90 minutes.

Former Gov. Mitt Romney (Mass.) stood out with clear and crisp answers -- showing flashes of humor and an ease with the important issues. He sounded authoritative when he talked about Iraq (not an easy task for a one-term governor of Massachusetts) and effectively cast himself -- a Mormon -- as part of the broad faith community in America. One note rang false, however. Romney seemed a bit too keen to make up for his previous comment that the government should not move "heaven and earth" to catch Osama bin-Laden. ""He is going to pay and he will die," Romney said. ...Okay, we get it.

Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) made sure viewers knew he wasn't a rubberstamp for President Bush's policy in Iraq. At one point early in the debate, McCain said that the war was "terribly mismanaged" and as a result "we now have to fix a lot of the mistakes that were made." Later, McCain reiterated that the war was "mismanaged" over the past four years. He did, however, say that he believed the American policy in Iraq was now on the right track and that the "strategy can succeed." Depending on how things turn out in Iraq, that comment has the potential to come back an haunt him later in the campaign. McCain seemed nervous at the debate's start -- speaking haltingly at times -- but seemed to settle in as it wore on.

Former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani committed no major blunders but also didn't distinguish himself particularly. He struggled a bit to answer a question on whether it would be a good day if and when Roe vs. Wade was repealed ("It would be ok," he said) and seemed slightly flummoxed on a question about the difference between Sunni and Shia. But, Giuliani repeatedly referenced his time as mayor of New York City and his response to the 9/11 attacks to show he is a leader who gets results. And, he made sure voters and viewers knew he wants to keep America on "offense" in the war on terror. Giuliani came into the debate as the leader in national polling and didn't seem to do anything to jeopardize that standing.

Sorting the remaining seven candidates' respective performances will take a bit more time.

The real winner tonight was Ronald Reagan. Not only was he praised at nearly every turn by nearly every candidate but his 11th Commandment was also kept: none of the Republican candidates spoke ill of their rivals for the nomination.

More tomorrow afternoon in this space. Thanks for riding along with me; hope you enjoyed it.

By Chris Cillizza  |  May 3, 2007; 10:03 PM ET
Categories:  Eye on 2008  
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Next: The Line: GOP Wants Its 'Safe' House Seats Back

Comments

Random Guy writes, "Well to me, a guy who cares nothing for the responsibility of a Republic to its citizens (merely for the states rights)..."

You don't have the first clue to what Ron Paul stands for, Random Guy.

Ron Paul stands for limiting the power of the federal government to what is called for in the Constitution.

You then call him "a fool." Well, if Ron Paul is a fool, then so were Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, George Washington and the other Founding Fathers. Ron Paul's idea of what the federal government should be doing is closer to the Founding Fathers' ideas than any candidate, Republican or Democrat. It's not even close.

Posted by: Mark Bahner | May 16, 2007 12:03 AM | Report abuse

The fact that journalist chose to ignore Ron Paul and his performance in the debate is nonsensicle. It relegates this article to the realm of campaign propoganda and reduces the writer to the role of political lawn jockey.

The fourth estate has lost all credibility.

Posted by: diggerfloyd | May 9, 2007 2:51 AM | Report abuse

I'm a republican and my whole family will vote for him Latinos for Rudy G. He is the only one who can beat Hillary. If republicans elect other than him the game is over. Has common sense please. The democrats wants to sink Rudy.

Posted by: Carlos | May 8, 2007 10:51 PM | Report abuse

Random Guy, you make a good point. We do need someone in the executive who cares about the responsibilities of the Republic for its citizens. And the truth is that not one of the other candidates does. Lowering taxes does not do it unless you also reduce spending. But the current crop of candidates are the very ones who have chosen to run the second-most-expensive war in US history by borrowing. This is totally irresponsible. Take the time to understand the solid basis on which Ron Paul stands, namely the true strength of the Constitution as a document of limited government, and the Austrian School of economics (basis for libertarian thought) that has been proven correct repeatedly throughout the last one hundred years.

Posted by: Dwight | May 8, 2007 8:58 AM | Report abuse

http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2007/03/01/60minutes/main2528226.shtml

The US Comptroller, David Walker (The US's top accountant, responsible for reporting on the fiscal integrity of the nation) has been warning Congress that without fast and severe cuts to government (he states 60% reduction or doubling taxes) the US will be insolvent soon. Washington has ignored his warning - and the citizenry is ignorant to the coming financial crisis as well. We are headed for a depression that will make the 1930's look like a minor hiccup.

What is the biggest problem we face as a nation? Terrorism? Global Warming? Not even close. It's time to quite living in fantasy land. We've all lived high on the hog - but all Empires fall. Most under the weight of their bloated government. How do you think we fun the war? Prescription Drug benefit? Medicare? Social Security? By paying for it? Certainly not. We just print more money and go into further debt. Ron Paul is the ONLY candidate on either side that is aware of the mess this country is in and understand what to do about it.

So, get smart and recognize that there are no free lunches. Or, pass the buck and let your children suffer the consequence. Actually, unless you are 60, you will be around for the fall.

Posted by: Jared | May 8, 2007 1:31 AM | Report abuse

I accept your characterization. Ron Paul does "scare me".

He scares me because he's getting such labels as the "real deal", to me because he just sounds different from the automatons on stage. That's fine. With BushCo. in power, the lack of executive leadership in the White House leaves the citizens to wander through the proverbial desert of ridicule/ignominy on the world stage. And as a citizenry we are so starved and our thirst so great for leadership, that I think we are assuming that any old "change" from politicians-as-usual will quench us.

Well to me, a guy who cares nothing for the responsibility of a Republic to its citizens (merely for the states rights) will not slake my thirst to respect my country's foreign policy again. And somebody who's idea of social leadership is to just BLINDLY ASSERT that we should all act as equals and therefore assume that the greatest of us will respect the least of us as equals...is but a fool. A hopeful fool to be sure. But no less a fool.

And so I fear Ron Paul. Good people are desperate for change. I fear that he will be a change for the worse.

Posted by: Random Guy | May 7, 2007 7:53 PM | Report abuse

The very fact that Ron Paul wasn't mentioned in this article is yet more proof of the obvious MSM's anti-American agenda. This article is just one more example of a sorry excuse for a journalist. These people are NOT journalists, they are ministers of PROPAGANDA and nothing more. If they were actually journalists they would report information as it happened, not the made up story of what they would have liked to have seen happen. Chris Cilliza has shown himself to be just another MSM hack not worth listening to.

Posted by: Real Patriot | May 7, 2007 3:02 PM | Report abuse

>>>And I found the "Bosso" guy funny above who posted all the anti-Clinton posts but did not site the source. How do we know the source is credible? May as well have been Ann Coulter...<<<

I'm not the encyclopedia for the lazy, RG. I appreciate that you find secret Federal programs like Project Eschelon 'funny', but I suggest using half the diligence in searching facts that you use in scouring obscurity to attempt to smear Ron Paul.

Or, was it the date that the Brady Bill passed or the fact that Hillary's socialized health care rants actually happened that you needed verification of?

Feel free to post something of substance to counter my posts besides that you find them humorous.

ABC News left Ron Paul's name off of their post debate poll. To repeat, ABC News left Ron Paul's name off of their post-debate poll.

They were flooded with many thousands of phone calls and e-mails to their various department heads until they agreed to re-post the poll...including Ron Paul as a choice, after which he completely dominated the poll...as expected.

If your theory is correct, that it was only half of the callers and e-mail writers, each calling/writing twice, my hat is still off to them for proactive response to right a glaring wrong by one of the major news outlets in this country.

Of course, we all know that ABC News is a credible source, eh?

Posted by: Bosso | May 7, 2007 12:39 PM | Report abuse

I have to wonder who this "Random Guy" is that keeps arguing relentlessly against Ron Paul here.

Why does Ron Paul scare you so much "Random Guy"?

I haven't seen you argue against any of Ron Paul's actual POSITIONS on things that actually matter - just citing "one source" that claims he made such-and-such statement some years ago.

Personally, I don't care even if he did say anything like that, (which I don't believe at all - there's no proof of it), at least his positions on WHAT REALLY MATTERS for turning this screwed-up Federal Gov't around are 100% correct. That's what really matters when electing a U.S. President. (After all, we're not selecting a chairman of Rainbow/PUSH here.)

And, as your last post shows, you have no idea what "States Rights" and the U.S. Constitution really mean. Go ahead and rant all you like, but I post this for the benefit of all others who might stumble upon your posts, who need to realize that you are at best, ignorant of the facts - or at worse, a subversive that just wants to keep a real reformer like Ron Paul out of the white House.

P.S. - You lost your bet. The reason there are so many positive Ron Paul supporters here is that people who use the Internet to research news and politics are by far more likely to support Ron Paul than the mass-media brainwashed majority.

Posted by: Bruce | May 7, 2007 12:02 PM | Report abuse

Brad, thank you for one of the best lines in this discussion, that we are not a democracy but a mediocracy. Wonderful double meaning here! Not only are the media trying to run the show, but the politicians at every level of government are nothing if not mediocre, with the exception of a certain congressman from Texas who shall remain nameless.

Posted by: Dwight | May 7, 2007 8:38 AM | Report abuse

I would bet money that roughly half these "Ron Paul is the man" comments were created by the same person. Read them all at the same time. The writing is the same....

I find it ridiculous that the Ron Paul people are advocating for a President that believes the states should have all the power. That seems ludicrous to me. You want to put your guy in there so he can just ignore the country and foist all responsibility onto the states? You simply want a guy in there who will divide the tax revenue 50 ways and hand it out? What's the point?

And I found the "Bosso" guy funny above who posted all the anti-Clinton posts but did not site the source. How do we know the source is credible? May as well have been Ann Coulter...

And by the way, I did not call Ron Paul a racist. I called him a bigot. I don't mean to say he hates minorities, just that he has no regard/compassion/respect for the differences between his personal situation and the predicament of minorities.

I guarantee you that if he gets further in the Presidential process, his comments on race will become part of a larger national dialogue. That may actually be GOOD for this country.

Posted by: Random Guy | May 7, 2007 8:22 AM | Report abuse

Ron Paul is clearly the candidate of distinction, but is apparently invisible to the press. Or is at best translucent.

I can't believe the lack of mention of him in every article I read.

I wonder what it will take for the press to treat all of the candidates equally?

Posted by: wendy | May 6, 2007 7:18 PM | Report abuse

It is obvious that Ron Paul has created some waves in the Neoconservative propaganda machine. When they start doing the personal attack and smear campaigns on a gentleman like him that tells me he is onto something. I solute you Mr. Paul for standing on your convections and telling it like it is. You will have my vote all the way.

It is so refreshing to see that we could have a choice other that the CFR, Tri-Lat, and Bilderberg representatives.

Posted by: Kurt Tompkins | May 6, 2007 12:50 PM | Report abuse

If the guy who wrote this article reads these (Chris Cilliza), shame on you for being a company man shill and ignoring the only candidate who had anything worthwhile to say.

Do you hate the truth, Mr. Cilliza?

Posted by: Alan | May 5, 2007 8:17 PM | Report abuse

According to the MSNBC Poll, Ron Paul was the clear winner, yet even the MSNBC
commentators are ignoring their own poll, and other evaluations of the debate, including the Washington Post, don't even mention him.

As I look at the poll now with over 70,000 votes, he has 36% in the positive rating, compared to just 25% for Giuliani and 20% for McCain.

Some pundits tried to discredit this saying that the Ron Paul people must be
out in force, which is bs. Not only are all candidate's people out in force, but if you look at the pre-debate poll, Ron Paul has only 9% positive rating--it's after watching the debate and finding out who he is that people give him their vote.

The news media is trying to control the election--let's not let them get away with it.

Posted by: EchelonMonitor | May 5, 2007 5:56 PM | Report abuse

Ruth,
I too supported Fred Thompson until I discovered that he: 1) is a member of The Council on Foreign Relations (a major force behind the push for a North-American Union); 2) voted for McCain-Feingold; 3) voted to expand NAFTA.
I believe in US sovereignty and cannot support a candidate with a globalist leaning, or one who would vote to infringe on rights protected by the Constitution.
Ron Paul is the only true conservative in the current field of 10, or of the other 2 prospectives.
God Bless our Republic.

Posted by: Sam Smith | May 5, 2007 1:27 PM | Report abuse

Yeah, let's see...we had the Brady Bill passed under Clinton.

Clinton fought to close the gun show 'loophole'.

We had Project Eschelon.

Under Clinton, NY Times called surveillance "a necessity"

'If you made a phone call today or sent an e--mail to a friend, there's a good chance what you said or wrote was captured and screened by the country's largest intelligence agency.'

"President Clinton has actually weakened a number of fundamental guarantees, including those of free speech and the right to trial by jury and that against double jeopardy. He has also supported retroactive taxes, gun control, and warrantless searches and seizures."

"The Clinton White House has, for example, supported the federalization of health care, crime fighting, environmental protection, and education."

"If constitutional report cards were handed out to presidents, he would receive an F."

Jason, do some homework before you become indignant. We support Ron Paul because we're aware of these things, they are accelerating and must be stopped NOW.

Ron's the only guy running, on either side of the fence, wh we can be sure will dismantle Big Brother.

Posted by: Bosso | May 5, 2007 11:02 AM | Report abuse

Waco?

Posted by: Nicksun | May 5, 2007 9:32 AM | Report abuse

Brad, I strongly dispute your suggestion that former President Clinton "did it, too". Show me evidence of him taking away your gun or your right to be secure in your person or the right to talk on the phone without the government listening. Don't just throw out accusations without factual evidence to back it up.

Posted by: Jason | May 5, 2007 8:43 AM | Report abuse

For the posters who are in love with Ron Paul: Think about how bad the government response to Hurricane Katrina was under the current Republican President. It would be WORSE if Ron Paul was President! Also, think of the food supply for humans and pets. Would you feel safe with a Libertarian like Ron Paul as President? I don't think so. I for one believe that government has a role to help make society better and deal with any problems that may occur without infringing on people's personal values. This is why I'm a proud to be a lifelong Democrat who would not vote for Ron Paul. Ron Paul may be an honest candidate, but that doesn't mean he would make a competent President.

Posted by: Jason from CA | May 5, 2007 02:57 AM

-----------------------------

What's your reasoning on that? I don't think you have a clue what you're talking about.

First of all, each state should be independent and sovereign in that they should have the ability to say to the Federal government "we don't want your help". This is constitution 101.

Secondly, they should have to ability to petition the government for help when it is an issue pertaining to national security or a national crisis, which obviously Katrina was.

Thirdly, Ron Paul, if you actually listen to what the man's saying, is talking about discontinuing the unconstitutional policies of preemptive war and nation building which bind not only states by sending their National Guard troops to foreign wars, but also bleed the common people dry of their wealth through fractional reserve banking and the fiat monetary system.

See if you can comprehend this...He is talking about abolishing the Federal Reserve System! Do you understand what that means? Do you understand what the Federal Reserve is and why it's so important we get rid of it if we want to cut the evil out by the root? (I use "evil" as a euphemistic term as I am not an ideologue.)

I'll let Ron Paul tell you about it himself: http://youtube.com/watch?v=ji_G0MqAqq8

It would do you well to listen.

And anybody who is still like I was at first when Katrina happened asking "Why the [expletive] haven't they gone in there!?!?" need to consider the following:

The first thing the Federal Government did when they got to New Orleans was take the guns away from the private citizens who had LEGALLY registered firearms, leaving them defenseless. When are people going to learn that the government cannot and WILL not protect you in a time of crisis?

I guarantee you one thing, Ron Paul being our president would make me feel safer in EVERY WAY. At least then I wouldn't lie awake at night wondering if our president was going to get us into another unjustified and unconstitutional conflict to secure oil reserves while lying to me about the reasons, or sending cruise missiles into Baghdad, or allowing United Nations troops to train and operate on my own soil, or take away my right to bear arms, or my right to be secure in my person, or my right to talk on my friggin' telephone without worrying that Steve from the Department of Homeland Security is listening in to everything I say without a warrant.

And those of you, particularly democrats, who might say, "yes but that's Bush doing all that"...need to wake up. Clinton did it too. In fact, it's been going on for a long long time now.

Posted by: Brad from Evansville, IN | May 5, 2007 6:14 AM | Report abuse

Jason from CA

When Galviston Texas go hit and destroyed by a hurricain fifty years ago it got rebuilt and was handled very effectivly by the local government without the help from any idiots from FEMA (they didn't exist) And from what I can see the local effort worked out pretty well. That's what happens when you give more power to the states.

Posted by: mayberry | May 5, 2007 4:10 AM | Report abuse

I got by Mark Levin's screaner to make the case for Ron Paul winning the debate last night. It was censored of course (never made it on air), and all the "Great One" could do is attack me, call me names, and tell me Paul has no chance.

Actually, "Great One", Ron Paul does indeed have a chance. He was the "Cinderella" story of the first GOP prez debate, and he will change the Republican party, even if Hiltery wins. Sorry!

Posted by: Derek Johnson | May 5, 2007 3:57 AM | Report abuse

I watched about half of the debate. That was enough to know what is important to me
and that is what this country is up against if a Republican wins in 2008.
The only candidate I would have any confidence is Fred Thompson and he wasn't even in the debate and he may or may not run.
Ruth Beazer

Posted by: Ruth Beazer | May 4, 2007 12:50 PM


-----------

You must have been taking a bathroom break during Ron Paul's turn to speak then. But its just as likely you simply blinked and missed him seeing as how the debate was severely stacked in favor of the so-called "top 3". That concept is irresponsible at best, fraudulent and yellow journalism at worst.

MSNBC should be ashamed of the way they conducted the debate. Giving Ron Paul 4 questions while giving McCain and Giuliani about 10 is just blatant favoritism.

Wanna know why MSNBC didn't want to show Paul? Because he could actually WHIP THE PANTS OFF of any democratic runner and ask for seconds. The man is indestructible.

He's getting my vote. And smart people, democrats and republicans alike should recognize that Paul is the kind of man who would make a great president.

Don't take my word for it. Do as others have suggested and do a youtube search for his name.

Posted by: Jim | May 5, 2007 3:40 AM | Report abuse

For the posters who are in love with Ron Paul: Think about how bad the government response to Hurricane Katrina was under the current Republican President. It would be WORSE if Ron Paul was President! Also, think of the food supply for humans and pets. Would you feel safe with a Libertarian like Ron Paul as President? I don't think so. I for one believe that government has a role to help make society better and deal with any problems that may occur without infringing on people's personal values. This is why I'm a proud to be a lifelong Democrat who would not vote for Ron Paul. Ron Paul may be an honest candidate, but that doesn't mean he would make a competent President.

Posted by: Jason from CA | May 5, 2007 2:57 AM | Report abuse

Concerning those whose analysis of politics contains the phrases "he looked the most presidential" or "he's not electable" need to pull your head out. You sound like a paid pundit who doesn't know his bum from a hole in the ground.

STOP LISTENING TO WHAT THE MEDIA TELLS YOU TO DO!

Ron Paul all the freakin' way.

I will be changing my party affiliation from Independent to vote for Paul in the primary. I'm also gonna drop him some money. Never done it in my life, but this is how sick I am of what's become of an America where people would rather see a plastic talking head as their president because he "looks more presidential".

God bless America!

Posted by: Jerry from Iowa | May 5, 2007 1:45 AM | Report abuse

Please, please, pay attention to Dr. Paul. Look at the comments on this blog. Everyone loves this guy.

You are doing no one a favor by ignoring the best thing to happen to American politics since Abe came from Illinois.

Ron Paul is excellent and I'm going to donate some of the little money I make to him to make it happen.

I invite everyone else to do the same. I believe in this man and I don't care what the Washington Post's writer says or doesn't say-- this is America and the people will make the decision, not the mainstream media.

Posted by: Georgia | May 5, 2007 1:43 AM | Report abuse

"Ron Paul is the only and I mean ONLY chance the so called Republican party can win. By the way does any one know when the Republcan party changed? All I know is it isn't what it used to be."
-Quoted from above

--------------------------

Yes, the Republican party changed, in my opinion in the administration of William McKinley. The sinking of the U.S.S. Maine was used as propaganda and legitimacy for invading Cuba and starting the Spanish American War.

Firstly, anyone who is a student of the Constitution should already know that invading a sovereign nation without provocation is strictly prohibited. This is one of the earlier examples of government misinformation leading to unjustified and unconstitutional war.

Many also believe that because the U.S.S. Maine sinking was later determined to have been an accident, that the sinking was, in fact, initialized by our own government as a pretext for war. The battle cry "Remember the Maine" seems to echo the "9/11 Never Forget" mentality. Something to think about.

Wars are begun, not by armies, but by men in suits. Why we continute to put up with it is beyond me.

Posted by: Brad from Evansville, IN | May 5, 2007 1:33 AM | Report abuse

I'm responding to the comment of the person who liked the things Ron Paul said and wanted to hear more from him, but....he also felt Ron did not come across as friendly or as having public speaking ability.

For those who haven't already checked out the videos of news and other interviews of him on youtube, they are worth checking out. I believe he comes across as more friendly and well spoken one on one, and when he has more time to talk.

The easiest way to find them is to do a search on "Ron Paul".

Posted by: smtwngrl | May 5, 2007 1:31 AM | Report abuse

What a bunch of namby-pamby white dudes in navy blue suits and red ties... a sad case, these robotic genuflectors to the altar of Reagan, who at least had the guts to say what he believed, no matter how bizarre. Weirdest moment of the evening: McCain, looking like he had been made up at a funeral home, promising to follow Bin Laden to the gates of hell, then belatedly remembering to smile... If the Dems can't beat this sad group, they totally deserve extinction.

Posted by: Mike | May 5, 2007 12:17 AM | Report abuse

It's great to see all of these positive comments about Ron Paul.

If he is unelectable, it will be because all of these folks who think he is great won't get up off their butts, pull out their wallets, and send him a check.

I did so, long before the debates. This was a first, as his is the first campaign I have ever considered worthy of my hard-earned fiat currency.

Be sure to put your money where your mouth is, folks.

Posted by: cuthbert1776 | May 4, 2007 11:47 PM | Report abuse

No presence? Not "presidential?" I am sure you would be hard-pressed, sir or madam, to define either of those terms in a way that fits your proclamation. Your definition would have to be so incredibly friggin narrow, that scarcely .001% of the population would qualify. Even Martin Luther King Jr. would have to be a bad speaker according to your bogus non-standard.

I'm waiting. Let's see you define those assertions, though I'm surely just wasting my time. I doubt you have the intellectual capacity to form a coherent line of thought.

Ron Paul is the man.

Posted by: Alan | May 4, 2007 11:43 PM | Report abuse

I am glad there is a true republican left. I was starting to think that I was the only one. I can't believe that I live in a time when the most conservative president in my life time was Bill Clinton. Every republican from Regan to the Bushes have made the government bigger and bigger while depleting money and increasing the deficit. I know I am wasting my breath due to the fact that the corporations own America, and as long as General Electric, and Disney own the media we weill never hear anything good about a man like Ron Paul. Its all about money and being a part of the top 5% in wealth. I don't think I will ever be in that elite league so all I can do is pray that some how a true American and a canidate that both Dems and Reps can praise has very little chance. By the way Ron Paul is the only and I mean ONLY chance the so called Republican party can win. By the way does any one know when the Republcan party changed? All I know is it isn't what it used to be.

P.S. I did like Bill Clinton and I know most Dems do to, however, Hillary is NOT Bill. That woman is pure evil.

Posted by: Mayberry | May 4, 2007 11:33 PM | Report abuse

Although Congressman Paul was given little time to speak during the debate(?), he showed that he is sincere and principled. He did not try to talk around the issues, but addressed them head-on. I too am going to change my party affiliation, and will support Congressman Paul to the end.
God Bless our Republic.

Posted by: Sam Smith | May 4, 2007 11:21 PM | Report abuse

Ron Paul is a clown. A carricature. He's not electable because he has no presence. He's not presidential. I would think he was weird even if he was a high school teacher.

I would sooner vote McCain, who I know to be disingenuous, taking whatever position is politically convenient at the moment and bowing to an administration that tried to destroy him during a previous presidential primary season.

Yes, I give Paul credit that he did not seem to be up there giving sound bites. Know what? If you or I were up there we wouldn't be giving sound bites either.

THAT DOESN'T MEAN YOU OR I SHOULD BE PRESIDENT.

If the bar is that low, we may as well just elect David Letterman and get it over with.

Posted by: Anonymous | May 4, 2007 11:16 PM | Report abuse

Ron Paul most certainly is not "unelectable." It's attitudes like that which create a climate conducive to the fulfillment of disaster. He is by far the best candiate: the MSNBC poll shows him as the winner, and the intelligent listener casts him as the winner. Ron Paul must be elected. It is America's only hope. Here's our chance to save the country and possibly the entire friggin planet from catastrophie. We must resist the will to entropy, the will to destruct and destroy rather than to build and prosper. Do not give in to the dark part of the human psyche which wants to annihilate mankind: resist the dark spirit. Promote peace and prosperity. See to it that the media does NOT undercover Ron Paul and make him "unelectable." A candidate is only "unelectable" if the American people allow him to be.

Posted by: Alan | May 4, 2007 10:18 PM | Report abuse

Some guy above said

"ROMNEY is the ultimate winner. He did an excellent presentation in the debate. With charisma, poise, articulateness, no wonder,...he's definitely, the most presidential of them all!

This is true without any shadows of doubt!"

------------

I guess 20 million in campaign money buys a lot of internet comments. That's the only explanation for why someone would say that about anyone besides Ron Paul.

Posted by: Eddie from kansas City | May 4, 2007 9:36 PM | Report abuse

It's fitting the title of this post is "The Fix", because that's what this is...a fix.

People need to wake up. Listen to Ron Paul. And raise cane if they assassinate him like they've done all our other heros.

Posted by: Brad | May 4, 2007 9:24 PM | Report abuse

Look at all of us screaming for Ron Paul. I want everyone to understand something...the establishment doesn't want to talk about abolishing the Federal Reserve. They don't want to talk about abolishing the IRS. They don't want to talk about abolishing the CIA.

Why?

It would do us all well to hear Eisenhower's speech about the military industrial complex again. It's about the money, people. We are being railroaded and ushered like we're a bunch of sheep by the corporate media on BOTH sides. Neither side wants to address the constitutional issues Ron Paul raises because the people who PAY them will do anything they can to suppress him, including creating thousands of news articles that only mention the top 3 SHILLS they're trying to peddle to us.

Mobsters and puppets, the LOT of them! The only exception I can see on either side of the aisle...Ron Paul.

Posted by: Brad | May 4, 2007 9:23 PM | Report abuse

How can anyone doubt that Ron Paul is a viable candidate?

Is this still even a democracy? Perhaps it's a mediocracy, meaning the media controls the show. Funny I haven't heard much about Ron Paul's stellar performance that literally ran all over the opposition with a steamroller of truth.

Watch out for Ron Paul, people. Anyone who can make me change my party affiliation to vote in the primaries is a viable candidate.

Vote with your hearts. Don't do what the media suggests you SHOULD do. That's been our problem far too long.

Posted by: Brad | May 4, 2007 9:06 PM | Report abuse

I've been following Dr. Paul since before I moved to Texas, and after living here a while, I've come to know why his constituents respect and support him.

He could remain congressman for his district for as long as he wants the office.

If Americans thirst for anything today, it's integrity, and I'm not suprized at the outburst of enthusiasm for him all across the United States.

It pains me to read the national media who cannot bury this story any deeper than it has in the last 24 hours. (They wonder why paper don't sell any more.)

Go Ron!

Posted by: Randy in Houston | May 4, 2007 8:34 PM | Report abuse

I just want to chime in to say that I, too, thought Ron Paul was head and shoulders above the rest, both because of his message and the fact that he doesn't come across like a sleazy, used-car-selling android. I thought I was alone in my belief until I started reading message boards such as this one.

Posted by: Derrick | May 4, 2007 8:26 PM | Report abuse

Ron Paul did great! I hope the media will give him the credit he deserves.

Posted by: Chuck in Wisconsin | May 4, 2007 8:16 PM | Report abuse

I swear. If Ron Paul was to be nominated, Holy cow! It would just be awsome.

People who love to suckle at the state's teet will hate him. Both the teachers and their ilk, and also the corporate welfare recievers. But if you can't support this man, I'm sorry you got to look at yourself in the mirror and ask yourself what kind of human being you are. And at what point did you make your deal with the devil.

Posted by: Nicksun | May 4, 2007 8:12 PM | Report abuse

Ron Paul is human. I disagree with him on NASA - I think NASA is important.

Why should the public fund anything on the front end and then get taken to the cleaners when it goes into production?

Remember when the power company was a public utility. Remember when the cable company was a public utility? Remember when toll roads were a public utility?

The taxpayer pays for this stuff and then the government (I use the term lightly) gives it their corporate pimps, along with tax breaks - which they make up by stringing out us - the proletariot.

Look at the Washington Post Board of Directors - all hedge fund operators. All betting you and I will continue to be suckers.

Look at Chrissy Mathews (Mr. Cronkite in Waiting - Mr News-Speak Catch Phrase Miester). Let's be clear, Sissy Chrissy is a sales clerk for an Arms dealer, GE. Bill Gates wife sits on the board of directors at the Washington Post. Bill Gates (M$) is partnered with GE in MSNBC. Every US asset in Iraq and Afghanistan has a M$ CE license. M$ even owns 10% of a Naval Ship Yard.

They're all betting on continued war - if peace ever breaks out - their bets will be called - and we can't allow that - what restaurant would ever hire Chrissey Mthews as schrill tenor bus boy?

Chrissey's bosses are the same pimps that run 9 of the presidentutes on the debunked debate we were fed last night. Those guys all do knee time on K-street - imagine Romney in Joan Crawford bang-me-quick pumps saying, "Sock it t Me!".

Mc Cain was the one most like Reagan - he's got Alziemers for xhrist's sake!

Mc Cain needs alziemers - he was in the Gulf of Tonkin THE DAY the criminal fabrication to attack Viet Nam was cooked up. Then he got into his jet plane - with ordinance components contracted from his Daddy's aero-war company - and then helped murder 3.5 Million innocent Vietnamese Women - children - Grand Paws. Like I said - he needs the releif of Alziemers.

Come to think of it - so do I - I let all this stuff happen!

I remember - I remember
The 5th of November

Anybody know what the market bulk rate for tar and feathers is?

Posted by: Cadavre | May 4, 2007 8:01 PM | Report abuse

I sent the Ron Paul campaign $100 with 100 other people a week ago. It will be the only time I do that for any politician. Ron Paul is the founding fathers come back from the grave. All this talk of the founding fathers spinning in their grave really helped.

I've been looking over Ron Paul articles on google news, no mention of him except in the comments. And there are plenty as displayed above. I'm getting my family and friends to register as Republican. Whenever I can help, I will.

Everyone here must convince someone they know to register Republican and vote for Ron Paul. It feels like theres blood and Paul could capitalize on it.

Posted by: Matt | May 4, 2007 8:01 PM | Report abuse

I can't believe you get paid to do this... where we watching the same debate? I feel the exact opposite. The only person that had anything intelligent to say was Ron Paul and you know it. Take a look at most of the polls where the American people believe the same. No one wants more of the same...I can't believe that Ron is running under the Republican ticket but I must say for the first time this is not about being a good democrat or a good republican but about being A GOOD AMERICAN!!! Finally someone whom has the AMERICAN people interest at heart...the middle class, the poor, and even you reading this post.

God bless,

Giorgio

Posted by: Giorgio | May 4, 2007 7:36 PM | Report abuse

All I can say is if you don't get Ron Paul then you really don't get what being an American is all about!

How can anyone think McCain,Romney or the former mayor of NY even came close to Dr. Ron Paul.....I am amazed that someone could even think that at all.

Well I have news for everyone, Ron Paul is going to win this, because there are a lot of people like me that are sick and tired of lying politicians and this time we are going to make sure they don't win.

Just watch the power of the REAL AMERICANS!

Posted by: thewind | May 4, 2007 7:30 PM | Report abuse

Ron Paul has my vote, and I'm going to send him $100 once I get paid next week. Never have I sent politician money before, never really saw the point considering what they go and do with it. His idea of eliminating the IRS, income tax and Federal Reserve is a great idea. I watched one of his you tube clips from the house of reps and he said our $1 money is only worth 4 cents today, wow that's not very much. Every other politician has been bought by Wall Street and went to expensive Ivy League private schools and is related to someone who works at ABC news. Ron seems like the sort of guy who doesn't have that type of background. The best interest of the American people is at his heart I'm sure.

Posted by: Mary Taylor | May 4, 2007 7:22 PM | Report abuse

So many wild opinions. So few well grounded arguments. To be the President of the United States takes an understanding of the fundamental human concerns of Americans, and a principled desire to do what is right, regardless of the political consequences. It also takes several important well developed skills in order to be able to lead and communicate effectively. In my view, Romney and Giuliani clearly represent the best mix of principled conviction and skill not to mention records of effective leadership and problem solving. I will never agree with any candidate on every issue. Better to choose a candidate who can be very effective in the role of president, (e.g. initiative, leadership, character, integrity, intelligence, good judgement, vigor communication skills etc.), and with whom I generally agree on the fundamental issues of government. I think Mitt and Rudy come about the closest to meeting that high standard.

Posted by: Jacob Garn | May 4, 2007 7:02 PM | Report abuse

"As a Democrat, I was most impressed by Ron Paul."

"Ron Paul is the only honest man in politics."

" Not one of the candidates last night, save for the refreshing Rep. Ron Paul of TX"

"Ron Paul is the only candidate who seemed to stand apart from the rest, who all resemble white males who usher at church, if only to raise their public profiles."

"Paul's assertion that the privacy of the federal government has increased while the privacy of its citizens has declined was a point the rest of the field didn't want to touch."

"Ron Paul stole the show."

"Ron Paul is VERY MUCH electable!!"

"If Ron Paul can continue to get his message across he'll be a great contender come primary time."

"Ron Pual is the only candidate that understands and belives in our Constitution."

"WHY DID THIS COLUMNIST NOT WRITE ABOUT HIM?"

"Ron Paul was excellent."

"Ron Paul was the clear winner..."

"I'm encouraged listening to a true conservative like Ron Paul who believe is following the Constitutions regarding matters of war and actually reducing government intervention into personal American lives."

"Ron Paul articulated what it is to be a Republican better than anyone has in the last 30 years+"

"Ron Paul seemed crisp because he is a man of integrity who truly believes his message of peace and liberty and doesn't need to tiptoe around the truth like the others."

"Ron Paul DESTROYED everybody on that stage."

"Ron Paul is electable."

My favorite line of the debates came from Paul when the down-the-line question was "Would America be better off with the Cilntons back in the White House?", Paul answered: (paraphrased from memory)...

"Being known as one who has never filp-flopped...I voted to impeach him the first time around...what makes you think I'd say yes to this question?"

Thank everyone quoted for your astute observations. In the 2004 election, 100 million Americans did not vote. Here's hoping they hear that this time there's someone worth voting for.

Posted by: Bosso | May 4, 2007 7:00 PM | Report abuse

Only one candidate showed an understanding and appreciation for the Constitution and liberty, Ron Paul. If we consider the fact that whomever we elect will need to take an oath to protect and defend that document and the principles espoused therein, our choice of who should be the GOP candidate is made for us; for, to choose anyone but Paul would be to knowingly choose someone bound to breach an oath if elected, to knowingly choose someone bound to violate that document and those principles we hold so sacred.

Friends, commit not this error--methinks 'tis more than mere error, even--and choose Paul for the GOP Presidential candidate. And, when the times comes, choose Paul for President of the United States.

Posted by: A. Floridian | May 4, 2007 6:50 PM | Report abuse

Ron Paul -- the clear winner. No one else is acceptable. But, MSNBC won't admit he won in the ratings, ABC did not even include him in the list!

Do they think the public won't notice?
Ron is the only one that doesn't take marching orders from the same bunch -- as in, Bush is blamed for the war but Clinton is the one who signed the policy in '98

Wake up America! Ron is 2nd in fundraising in NH.
If you want a quasi conservative with a pretty face, vote for Mitt. But if you want a principled conservative who kowtows to no one, Paul is the one.

The mainstream media has proven itself irrelevant once again.
Matthews was an embarrassment with his combativeness and interference and biased and contentious questions.

This was about comparing REPUBLICAN values amongst the 10 not whether they like Clinton or not.
Using the right left paradigm is all the cons know how to do you see?

Posted by: NH4RonPaul | May 4, 2007 6:13 PM | Report abuse

What a disgusting sight the GOP debate was: A bunch of arrogant white men who are out of sync with the fabric of this country, in a veiled manner trying to defend the USA's worst leader of all time & tell a diverse country how they should be the leader.
Except for Ron Paul, that's the largest group of unctuous and smarmy men on a single stage I have ever seen: all chanting Ronald Reagan's name in shibboleth as if he were some second "Jesus Christ". Worse than nauseating.

Posted by: Taylor Bagshaw | May 4, 2007 6:06 PM | Report abuse

roo responded to my original post calling inconsistency in my support for both Ron Paul and Dennis Kucinich, and made a passing stab at Mike Gravel's tax idea.

Well, I certainly wasn't suggesting that Ron Paul's platform is anything like Dennis Kucinich. I was merely stating my opinion that these are two guys who are intelligent and have their own ideas. Contrast this with most of the others including all of the front runners who got their 'ideas' from pollsters. When their election ideas come from pollsters, we can be sure that their elected office decisions will be gotten from pollsters and lobbyists, as opposed to any informed understanding of the world or principled commitment to do the right thing for the country.

While I much prefer Paul's platform to Kucinich' I think either one would do more to advance the state of our nation and people than the alternatives.

As for Gravel's tax idea, I actually love it--tax consumption not income. Living beyond our means (at both government and personal levels) is the downfall of the U.S. Gravel's fair tax would help enormously to wean us from that bad habit, and would help level the playing field with foreign producers--make them pay for our social programs just like our own producers have to. Notwithstanding, Gravel has too many other weird ideas and unstable temper for me to seriously consider him--he's like the Howard Dean of this election cycle.

Posted by: pacer | May 4, 2007 5:49 PM | Report abuse

One only needs to look at Ron Paul's voting record to see that he is founding father material. He may seem "fringe" to some, but that only shows how much we've drifted from the Constitutional principles upon which this nation was founded. Check out his voting on conservative issues at the following link. You'll have to download the pdfs from each hyperlink to see the voting for each quarter year.

http://www.jbs.org/taxonomy/term/210

Ron Paul 2008!!

Posted by: Jason Stephenson | May 4, 2007 5:43 PM | Report abuse

Ron Paul may not be electable,and I sure wont vote for him, but at least hes INTERESTING. And what Republican can resist voting for someone who wants to abolish the IRS

Posted by: max | May 4, 2007 5:35 PM | Report abuse

ROMNEY WON THE DEBATE, BUT EVERYONE HAD SOME GREAT IDEAS, MAKING HIS WIN MARGINAL AT BEST.

THE FACTORS THAT MAKE A DIFFERENCE FOR VOTERS ARE THESE...IN THIS ORDER:

1. VOTERS VOTE WITH THEIR WALLETS - CAN THIS GUY LEAD THE COUNTRY TO HELP AMERICANS BECOME MORE PROSPEROUS?

2. GOOD LOOKS - IS THE CANDIDATE UGLY? (LOOK AT HISTORY - HISTORY BEARS THIS OUT - IF YOU ARE OLD AND UGLY, YOUR TENDENCY TO WIN HAS BEEN CUT IN HALF)

3. VOTERS IN RECENT HISTORICAL TRENDS HAVE AVOIDED MAKING SENATORS AND REPRESENTATIVES THE US PRESIDENT...OVER THE LAST DECADES, CAN YOU NAME THE LAST PRESIDENT WHO WAS A SENATOR OR REPRESENTATIVE? GOVERNORS, FOR WHATEVER REASON, STAND A FAR BETTER CHANCE OF SUCCESS.

4. AND MANY OTHERS OF COURSE

PLEASE EMAIL ME AND TELL ME THAT I AM WRONG :) breakthroughtek at gmail dot com

Posted by: Mikeyyy | May 4, 2007 4:47 PM | Report abuse

Here's the conclusion of Ron Paul's recent (April 2007) column about "Government and Racism:"

The true antidote to racism is liberty. Liberty means having a limited, constitutional government devoted to the protection of individual rights rather than group claims. Liberty means free-market capitalism, which rewards individual achievement and competence, not skin color, gender, or ethnicity.

More importantly, in a free society every citizen gains a sense of himself as an individual, rather than developing a group or victim mentality. This leads to a sense of individual responsibility and personal pride, making skin color irrelevant. Rather than looking to government to correct our sins, we should understand that racism will endure until we stop thinking in terms of groups and begin thinking in terms of individual liberty.

The whole column is available at his congressional web site: http://www.house.gov/paul/tst/tst2007/tst041607.htm

Ron Paul is not a racist.

Posted by: StC Mark | May 4, 2007 4:38 PM | Report abuse

Isn't it strange how much people tend to buy into voting for someone they think can get elected, instead of the candidate they would like to see as president?

If the powers that be want to try to exclude one or more candidate from consideration, they don't have to attack that person's message. Instead, they try to avoid much mention of them in the media, and emphasize the concept that they don't have a chance.This only works if we buy into it.

Ron Paul would not have done as well as he did in the MSNBC polls, if his message did not resound with voters.

In one poll, respondents were asked to give each candidate a positive, negative, or neutral rating. Ron Paul had the highest positive and lowest negative rating.

One might say that was all of the Ron Paul fans calling to vote. And that was, I'm sure, part of it. But as the numbers grew, the percentage held, and varied by only a couple of %. The difference between the numbers after the debate and before the debate was huge.

Early today, I saw that the numbers had gone down some, from 45-48% positive last night down to 30% earlier today. But Romney's positive rating was only 31%, and the others were lower.

In the other MSNBC Poll, voters were asked to tell who rate who did the best in the debate in six different areas. Ron Paul placed second or third in most of them, and first as having had the "best one liner".

I'm not sure about the numbers on that today, as that poll is flawed. You can only see the numbers after you vote, so presumably you can only go back and check them by voting again. The fact that you could vote more than once would make the numbers meaningless on the second poll.

This morning, my dh had he had watched a program in which they were talking about the debate and candidates. Many of the people calling in were talking about Ron Paul (some hadn't heard of him or didn't know before that he was running), but the commentators were not talking about Ron Paul.

Ron Paul has my support as long as he is in the race. Not only does he say the right things, but his record in the House is entirely consistent. What you hear is what you get.

Posted by: smtwngrl | May 4, 2007 4:28 PM | Report abuse

i saw the whole thing i might be a young republican (16) but i thought it was ok. tommy thompson i believe should not of aid that if your GAY your employeer could fire you! also i would like macain to be president but i personally do not believe in evolution so i really do not know however i think that macain is the oldest but the smartest presedential nomination we mhave today.

Posted by: kc | May 4, 2007 3:58 PM | Report abuse

Well I just donated for the first time ever to the tune of $199, and you guessed it.

RON PAUL ALL DAY IN EVERYWAY !!!!!!

GOD SAVE THIS COUNTRY FORM ITSELF

Posted by: NWO, NO THANKS!!! | May 4, 2007 3:58 PM | Report abuse

Rick--"Dwight, that is not the definition of evolution that is tought in our schools and was argued by Darwin."

You are mistaken. The theory of evolution does not address what was before and what caused the big bang so Dwight would be right to hold hope his hypothesis is correct. Those are issues that are not adequately addressed by current. I use Occam's Razor to determine that the existence of a supreme being is still not necessitated.

Evolution does not, in fact, even directly address the origin of mutation which it is entirely based on which falls under biochemistry. It is strictly an explanation of how random mutations have shaped the species to their current (and future) forms.

Posted by: roo | May 4, 2007 3:44 PM | Report abuse

Instead of simply seeing each other as "fellow human beings" we seem obsessed with worrying about useless labels like "black," "white," "christian," "atheist," "mormon," "jew," "hispanic," "southerner," "yankee," etc. Dr. Paul understands that, and it's a lesson we could all benefit from

Posted by: Phillip Rhodes | May 4, 2007 03:19 PM


That's a wonderful dream if everybody is starting out on the same footing. But, we're not.

2 teams are playing a football game. In the first half you saddle one of the teams with unequal treatment from the refs and as a result they end up way behind at halftime.

Then to open the second half, you announce, "Everyone will now be treated equally!!!"

Is that enough? Shouldn't the team that's behind as a result of the first-half discrimination be upset? Are they now to be blamed? Are they now at fault because they highlight the mistreatment that they have received, and they band together to celebrate the few unique qualities that had not been treaded on?

If Ron Paul is (A) so out of touch as to not understand this (B) so callous as to not care then he's not right to hold elected office. His job would be to lead ALL of the people, not just those that have had the same societal experiences as him and his family.

Posted by: Anonymous | May 4, 2007 3:35 PM | Report abuse

Yeah, don't anyone comment on how Ron Paul WON the MSNBC poll with 43% of the vote!

COME ON PEOPLE!!! I think the only reason most people across the country say things like Ron Paul is "hopelessly unelectable" is because big media outlets TELL US THEY ARE. Yet all the while, if you bother to listen to your neighbors now and then, or if you seek out a news source that is not at the pinnacle of money making (which means they're more or less in the government's pocket), you'll find that opinions are a lot different among the actual PEOPLE than what any mainstream news outlet would have you believe.

THINK FOR YOURSELF, and if you can't do that, then you have no business voting!

Posted by: Alan | May 4, 2007 3:34 PM | Report abuse

Bush's lack of respect for Habeas Corpus means they can take any one of us and throw us in Guantanamo indefinitely without giving us access to a lawyer.

It's not just a staple of american law but a foundation of law for civilized countries for centuries.

The fact that our President disregards it and our citizens don't understand it indicates that we take our liberty and freedom for granted these days. Because, hey, the terrorists want to follow us home.

Posted by: Anonymous | May 4, 2007 3:20 PM | Report abuse

[quote]

"Racism is simply an ugly form of collectivism, the mindset that views humans strictly as members of groups rather than individuals. Racists believe that all individuals who share superficial physical characteristics are alike: as collectivists, racists think only in terms of groups. By encouraging Americans to adopt a group mentality, the advocates of so-called "diversity" actually perpetuate racism. Their obsession with racial group identity is inherently racist."
--Dr. Ron Paul, "Government and Racism"

Those 1996 quotations from his newsletter were not written by Dr. Paul. Investigate and be enlightened.
[/quote]

What's to investigate? What he said is very straightforward and understandable and it's all true. The token nods to "diversity" we keep embracing in this country do nothing but perpetuate our tendency to try to label and group things.

Instead of simply seeing each other as "fellow human beings" we seem obsessed with worrying about useless labels like "black," "white," "christian," "atheist," "mormon," "jew," "hispanic," "southerner," "yankee," etc. Dr. Paul understands that, and it's a lesson we could all benefit from

Posted by: Phillip Rhodes | May 4, 2007 3:19 PM | Report abuse

The Republican debate didn't make it clear who didn't believe in evolution. I believe about three hands were raised but their names didn't follow. It's unbelievable that republicans might select a candidate that doesn't believe in science. John McCain's tone was unusually non-friendly. John might have done better without that style.
However it didn't come across as non-presidential. Ron Paul's style didn't come across particularly well, nor friendly. I wish he was a better speaker. I'd like to hear more from him. His ideas are more of what true fiscal conservatives want from government. One of the early questions (3rd?) had an excellent reply but I didn't catch which little-known candidate gave the reply. The candidate recommending splitting up the Iraq oil revenue by thirds sounded excellent.
Havious corpus - what is that (and I'z gots a good edumication)? We're not all lawyers!
Strict constructionist judge comment - come on Rudy!

Posted by: LifeIsGood | May 4, 2007 3:14 PM | Report abuse

Are these the best and brightest of the GOP? Rejecting evolution. No to stem cell research. Reversing Roe v. Wade. Turning their past vetos into a pissing contest. Running away from Bush and the policies of the rubber-stamp republicans.

And the media is tone deaf to it all, focusing instead on who was "clear and crisp" and who was the "winner". There were no winners here. God help us!

Posted by: Kane | May 4, 2007 3:01 PM | Report abuse

I am constantly amazed at the sheer amount of people who will profess to vote for someone just because really seem to be genuine and honest. I think it shows the tremendous yearning for a straight-flying politician.

For example the person who was teetering between Dennis Kuchinich and Ron Paul. Boggles the mind. Those two are about as far apart as possible on most meaningful issues. For someone who is on the same lines as Dennis on policy, a Paul presidency would be devastating (and presumably vice versa.)

Or those who like Mike Gravel for his integrity but fail to appreciate the profound effect of his support of the (Anything But) FairTax.

Posted by: roo | May 4, 2007 2:58 PM | Report abuse

I'm not surprised Ron Paul got counted out in the article, but I was hoping to be pleasantly surprised. Luckily, I'm a realist, so I expected the usual coverage of the usual suspects. Ron Paul was, nonetheless, the best candidate there last night.

Posted by: Anonymous | May 4, 2007 2:50 PM | Report abuse

Have to agree with the many, Ron Paul was by far the best. Mitt Romney is too slick and the biggest flip-flopper ever...
McCain was like a bad actor, he did the right lines but you knew he was acting. If he really wanted to chase bin laden to the gates of hell he would have said something when W sent the troops into Iraq instead of finding bin Laden. McCain and Romeny will say pretty much anything to get elected...
Rudy is Rudy. You get what you see, just like in every cop movie, he is the mayor that runs to the media to show his face and take credit...
Tommy Thompson, as Health Secretary he we ran out of flu vaccine. At a recent event he joked about Jews and money that would have got Imus fired. nough said....
Gov. Hucabee, do we really need another politician using his religion to pander to voters?

Ron Paul may be thin on charisma but he is big on ideas. He was the hands down winner. Paul is not afraid to be honest with his views. Honesty what a concept.

Posted by: Pavel | May 4, 2007 2:50 PM | Report abuse

Ron Paul DESTROYED everybody on that stage. I wish he would have gotten to say more though.

Posted by: andrew | May 4, 2007 2:47 PM | Report abuse

Trying to tie Ron Paul to David Duke is just sad.

Paul upsets the usual commies and fascists.

This is the old smear story implying Osama is a Muslim terrorist. Sure, right. (Yawn)

Posted by: Gil Johnson | May 4, 2007 02:07 PM


Hmmm, I think I'll just go ahead and refute that if you don't mind. Perhaps not only the David Duke part, but the larger point as well. The comparison is ludicrous enough that it should only take me a minute.

Top 5 Differences between the Obama/madrasah smear and "Ron Paul is a bigot" assertion:

1) So called "liberal media" ran with the Obama smear. So far Dead Silence from the national media on Paul.
2) No available quotes from Obama saying anything hateful about Chrisitanity or Western Culture.
3) References to Ron Paul available on David Duke's website (not safe for work). No known madrasahs websites embracing Obama.
4) Context of larger right-wing campain to paint Obama as scary-unelectable-dark-skinned-foreigner-guy: For example, I'm sure you know what his middle name is and where his father is from. Has there been a similar left-wing campaign against Paul?
5) Other materials available to cast Paul's views on diversity into question, such as that published by "Scott" above. Can you pull a similar quote from Obama along the lines of "Hey, madrasahs ain't so bad"???

I'll wait here while you look....

Posted by: Random Guy | May 4, 2007 2:40 PM | Report abuse

Dwight, that is not the definition of evolution that is tought in our schools and was argued by Darwin. You may believe we evolved after creation, and as a matter of fact, so do I to a certain extent, but that is not the science that is being tought, and is believed by so many evolutionists. The theory that is science-based holds there is no room for creation and says we evolved from a small piece of matter. Look up the definition in the dictionary.

Posted by: Rick | May 4, 2007 2:40 PM | Report abuse

Please start using the correct terminology. One does not 'believe in' evolution any more than one believes in gravity. One accepts (or rejects) the theory of evolution.

For those unclear about the word 'theory', may I point out that gravity is also 'just a theory.'

The debate was interesting, though. Ron Paul was clearly the one with the most ideas (disagreeable as they may be) but he is not the Libertarian many like to make him out to be. He is the ultimate Federalist on the field right now.

Posted by: roo | May 4, 2007 2:38 PM | Report abuse

I think it's ridiculous that this article didn't even mention Ron Paul, and the comments on it mention him over 100 TIMES!!! WHY IS IT NOT IN THE ARTICLE??? It makes no sense! Ron Paul is the best candidate, and people are talking about him as much or more than anyone! Why is he not getting a mention?

Posted by: 4ronpaul | May 4, 2007 2:33 PM | Report abuse

There is no conflict between creation and evolution. Creation is the belief that God, the Uncaused Cause, brought the universe into existence where before it did not exist. Evolution is a process that occurs post-creation, where things that already exist change according to the laws of the universe.

Posted by: Dwight | May 4, 2007 2:30 PM | Report abuse

Ron Paul was excellent! He represents all that we want in a presidential candidate.

Posted by: libertarian | May 4, 2007 2:29 PM | Report abuse

Roy, I'm a christian and I want to make sure I understand you correctly....

Are you saying evolution can't be proven, but the Bible has been fully "authenticated"?

That sounds backwards to me. I thought that was what "faith" was for.

Posted by: Anonymous | May 4, 2007 2:26 PM | Report abuse

I have never heard so much ignorance in one place in my life as are in these posts by liberals concering the Republican debates. Evolution is a theory. It has never been proven or even come close to being proven. The Bible on the other hand is the most authenticated historical document of antiquity in existence today. God inspired men who listened to Him to write His words. Christians embrace science that proves facts, not theories. Unproven scientific theories are only excuses not to accept the existence of God.

Posted by: Roy Leonard | May 4, 2007 2:22 PM | Report abuse

Why is Ron Paul unelectable? Because the system is rigged to require lots of money, and he can't be bought.

I did the numbers of the before and after on MSNBC's Rate The Candidates. Ron Paul was the only candidate that had a double digit negative decline as well as a double digit positive increase. The only other double digit changes were Guiliani with a 13% decline in his favorable rating and McCain with a 10% decline in his favorable rating. I think these numbers tell the true story.

http://spreadsheets.google.com/pub?key=pU0hCwzN6uBACW3fClkyBZQ

Posted by: Dwight Johnson | May 4, 2007 2:18 PM | Report abuse

What is clear from the comments above is that Dr. Paul impressed a lot of people, and that the officialdom desperately wants to ignore him. It is tragic that this is likely to be the only major coverage he will receive. If enough of America actually was exposed to the man, he might make a difference. Of course, that is exactly why the media, at the behest of their corporate masters, will shunt him off to the sidetracks.

Posted by: The Snarkmeister | May 4, 2007 2:13 PM | Report abuse

This was a Republican debate not a Democrat debate. Here is a lesson for those writing about evolution. People who believe in creation dont believe we evolved. The Republican party is saturated with christians, who believe in creation. Thus, the party that believes in creation is going to have candidates that dont believe in evolution. It is odd that some of you find it hard to believe that some republican candidates dont believe in evolution. Here is a fact, all but one president believed in creation and not evolution ... can you guess who that was.

Posted by: Rick | May 4, 2007 2:10 PM | Report abuse

Trying to tie Ron Paul to David Duke is just sad.

Paul upsets the usual commies and fascists.

This is the old smear story implying Osama is a Muslim terrorist. Sure, right. (Yawn)

Posted by: Gil Johnson | May 4, 2007 2:07 PM | Report abuse

I came in to see who I could see as President. Romney was an unknown, but may have my vote. I will watch him closely now--clearly stood out in presence and ability to paint a vision.

Posted by: repub4life | May 4, 2007 2:04 PM | Report abuse

Why aren't all the candidates treated equally by the media? Why divide them into "big fish" and "little fish"?

Is it because some candidates raised more money than the rest? If so, this means in the American system candidates virtually buy office.

That can't be true. I agree some candidates distinguish themselves and leave their competition in the dust. But this should happen as a result of the debates (or other factors) - and NOT because the media has spiked the field beforehand.

The clear winner in the sorry line-up of Repubs is Ron Paul. If his message got out more, he would be electable. But the media defer to money, apparently - and so he is ruled "unelectable" by our punditocracy. Note that Cillizza mentioned only three of the debaters, in this, his first article. The "nobody-losers" (per the media) will go in article number 2, maybe.

What a shame. Imagine if we didn't have the filters imposed on us by our rulers. Then we could choose what we want. NOT what THEY want.

Posted by: Mikhail Yeltsin | May 4, 2007 2:02 PM | Report abuse

Oh, I get it now.

Based on your quote, "Dr. Paul" basically believes that the NAACP, Rainbow Coalition, the Urban League etc. are the actual Racists that the country should be worried about. Yeah, that's a much better notion.

Given what you cite as a quote, I have no trouble believing that the other quotes are true. I can't find the actual quote online because the Victoria Advocate's archives don't go back that far. But I can't find a denial from Paul either.

Posted by: Random Guy | May 4, 2007 1:56 PM | Report abuse

As I understand it, if Paul was misquoted, he was misquoted by his buddy David Duke.

Posted by: Anonymous | May 4, 2007 1:50 PM | Report abuse

Ron Paul doesnt need hundreds of millions of dollars to "spin" his views and to explain his flip-flops - he has no hypocrisy in his past record.

Posted by: Ana B | May 4, 2007 12:49 PM


Here's his record -- http://www.shanesklar.com/news_DETAILS.php?news_ID=49

The fact that so many of you are willing to landslide him in to office is absolutely repulsive.

Posted by: Random Guy | May 4, 2007 1:41 PM | Report abuse

"Racism is simply an ugly form of collectivism, the mindset that views humans strictly as members of groups rather than individuals. Racists believe that all individuals who share superficial physical characteristics are alike: as collectivists, racists think only in terms of groups. By encouraging Americans to adopt a group mentality, the advocates of so-called "diversity" actually perpetuate racism. Their obsession with racial group identity is inherently racist."
--Dr. Ron Paul, "Government and Racism"

Those 1996 quotations from his newsletter were not written by Dr. Paul. Investigate and be enlightened.

Posted by: Scott | May 4, 2007 1:37 PM | Report abuse

"Governor Romney, What do you least like about America today."

Actual Answer: Gee - I don't know. I love everything about America.

Would have got my vote if he answered: LIBERALS (now THAT would have been charismatic and funny)

Posted by: Ihatechrismathews | May 4, 2007 1:28 PM | Report abuse

Romney was the winner of the woman-less beauty pagent according to the media.

Ron Paul was the winner when it came to talking about the issues.

Posted by: roger | May 4, 2007 1:21 PM | Report abuse

Didn't catch the whole debate and unfortunately didn't hear any of Ron Paul's comments (although I've seen many of his thoughts on youtube) but based on what I did see the Rs should be very concerned. Their 'front runner' candidates are pandering clowns whose depth of understanding on any critical issue needs at least a 'no diving' sign.

Of course the Dems have parallel problems too, with Kucinich the only apparently principled offering.

In this next round of elections the people need to focus first and foremost on electing honest people who are well-read and principled about at least trying to do the best thing for the country (as opposed to special interests or their own reelection chances).

Clinton sold the country to China and big agriculture, Bush to the oil, war and drug industries. Stop the thievery and elect either Ron Paul or Dennis Kucinich. We can sort out their unique visions for America later, but at least we'll have a government we can trust to not sell us out.

Posted by: pacer | May 4, 2007 1:19 PM | Report abuse

Why is Ron Paul "unelectable"? Are we a free society where the American dream flourishes or are we not?
If the other candidates like Rudy Giuliani think they can be the "new Reagan", there couldn't be more arrogance. Reagan was a giant compared to them. The only one candidate who can match this benchmark is - guess who.

Posted by: Anox | May 4, 2007 1:18 PM | Report abuse

Ron Paul is electable. It's cool that people have anti-freedom beleifs but if a majority of Americans are accually pro-freedom for once then maybe Ron Paul will be elected rhis round.

Posted by: ben | May 4, 2007 1:17 PM | Report abuse

Ron Paul seemed crisp because he is a man of integrity who truly believes his message of peace and liberty and doesn't need to tiptoe around the truth like the others.

I guess it doesn't surprise me though, that this article only mentions the three slugs that the media has already decided (for us) will be the front runners. it's sad really.

Posted by: Jacob | May 4, 2007 1:15 PM | Report abuse

Why doesn't anyone in the media make a point about Guiliani's lack of experience when it comes to global politics? They have no problem pointing this out when it comes to Obama?

Posted by: Leigh | May 4, 2007 1:14 PM | Report abuse

Ron Paul articulated what it is to be a Republican better than anyone has in the last 30 years+

Posted by: Andy | May 4, 2007 1:14 PM | Report abuse

After watching the GOP debate, I think Hillary Clinton won this one, too. The only folks who should vote for any of these 10 are the ones who like things exactly as they are right now because things will not change under their leadership.

Posted by: Tracy | May 4, 2007 1:12 PM | Report abuse

It's an old saying: you get the government you deserve. The sad fact is, we are not good enough to deserve the likes of Ron Paul.

Posted by: Dwight Johnson | May 4, 2007 1:11 PM | Report abuse

"At least 3 hands went up as not believing in evolution. The camera cut away too quickly to identify them. Such a response should disqualify anyone with aspirations to be president."
Amen to that (as it were).

What's even sadder is that they all had to look around at the other candidates to see how *they* were answering. I have a hard time believing that even the ones who sheepishly raised their hands don't believe in evolution... they are just trying to get that all-important Neoconservative evangelical vote. We all know they show up on election day... heck, the polling places are usually in their churches anyway!

Posted by: Erik | May 4, 2007 1:07 PM | Report abuse

Ron Paul was the clear winner. He gave impassioned, logical, scholarly answers that show clear principles. He voted against the war and Patriot act and would lower taxes for everyone.

Posted by: Michael | May 4, 2007 1:03 PM | Report abuse

Ron Paul definitely stole the show, as the only Republican willing to defend the core Republican ideas of small / limited federal government, states rights, personal responsibility and individual Liberty. None of the other candidates on the stage has any business even referring to himself as a Republican.

Or at least they wouldn't if the Republican party had stayed true to it's libertarian roots, instead of being co-opted by NeoCons and turned into a caricature of itself.

Posted by: Phillip Rhodes | May 4, 2007 1:03 PM | Report abuse

I found nothing inspiring about the debate besides the truly conservative alternative at the debate named Ron Paul. I am a life-long liberal. I want to see the government do good four our nation. But since all the Republicans can offer us is more war and more government interference with our personal lives, I'm encouraged listening to a true conservative like Ron Paul who believe is following the Constitutions regarding matters of war and actually reducing government intervention into personal American lives.

The Republicans don't get it, many Americans want a new direction, not more internationalism, war making and narrow-minded religious views in public life.

Ronald Reagan's big failure was that despite his rhetoric he was not a small government conservative. Most of these Republicans are Reagan-like because they want to spend money we don't have on the military and interfere with people's personal lives. That is the legacy of Reagan that lives on in America in 2007.

Posted by: Rocknj | May 4, 2007 1:01 PM | Report abuse

Regarding the candidates supporting evolution, it has nothing to do with religion. I've studied evolutionary biology extensively in a secular, collegiate setting, and came to the conclusion that more needed to be taught about evolution. Particularly the flaws that most folks refuse to acknowledge, or censor from the conversation. There are many, many academics who question the theory's validity. Sure, animals within a species can change to adapt to their environment, because they were endowed with a robust gene pool, but science has never observed one creature becoming another -- even in a lab with may flies who pass through a generation every few days, and that they intentionally tried to mutate...sure, you may get may flies with four wings... but they cannot fly, and they are STILL FLIES. Evolution in the sense that one species can become another, that we all evolved from lifeless matter is a theory that has much evidence against it and no fossil evidence. You may think the fossil evidence is there, but I challenge you to do the research, instead of swallowing every pill you're handed. Darwin thought the inside of a cell was just a clump of jelly-like material. We now know it is populated with micro-machines as advanced as the most complicated factories man can create, which, many credible scientists are indicating could in no way have "evolved" randomly. Most mainstream folks are afraid to read about this line of thinking though, or too easily throw around labels and insults to folks who actually do the extra research. And if science is your hot button, one of the foundational laws in science is that something CANNOT come from nothing. Yet, the Big Bang clearly indicates first there was nothing -- no matter, no time, nothing -- then a universe... then, somehow rocks spawned microbes, which spawned fish, then rats, then people who comment on political web-sites. All randomly. Sorry, I just don't have enough faith to believe that hog-wash. Mainstream folks once thought the earth was flat as well, and violently opposed those who disagreed... so times don't change.

Posted by: trueblue | May 4, 2007 12:55 PM | Report abuse

I couldn't stand Romney. What a fluffer! Oh, I can't think of anything wrong with America... B.S. Listen, I love this country, but I'm not so blind I can't see there are things that need fixing. Romney was a smarmy, pandering fake.

Ron Paul was excellent.

Posted by: nisleib | May 4, 2007 12:54 PM | Report abuse

A liitle afraid of Ron Paul and Duncan Hunter, are you not?

Posted by: epi | May 4, 2007 12:54 PM | Report abuse

I watched about half of the debate. That was enough to know what is important to me
and that is what this country is up against if a Republican wins in 2008.
The only candidate I would have any confidence is Fred Thompson and he wasn't even in the debate and he may or may not run.
Ruth Beazer

Posted by: Ruth Beazer | May 4, 2007 12:50 PM | Report abuse

These men are not leaders - they are a bunch of cowardly crowd pleasers with political leanings entirely formed by PR analysts. The same could certainly be said about the dems too, which is a sad thing!

Posted by: Nick | May 4, 2007 12:49 PM | Report abuse

Ron Pual is the only candidate that understands and belives in our Constitution.
He is the first candidate I have ever heard that I can vote for out of genuine admiration, rather than voting against the worst evil.

And whay is he not electable? Because he has not raised hundreds of millions of dollars? Really, have Americans become so shallow that they need to be "sold" a candidate?

Ron Paul doesnt need hundreds of millions of dollars to "spin" his views and to explain his flip-flops - he has no hypocrisy in his past record.

Of course, given his enourmous approval on this board and on the msnbc poll immediately after the debate (he lead every approval category), I must ask:

WHY DID THIS COLUMNIST NOT WRITE ABOUT HIM?
This is irresponsible, lazy journalism at its worst.

Chris Cillizza - you should be ashamed of yourself.

Posted by: Ana B | May 4, 2007 12:49 PM | Report abuse

Guiliani might have been a decent mayor, but he's not presidential material. Romney comes off as polished flip-flopper - don't trust him. McCain was McCain, he doesn't have a chance whatsoever. Ron Paul was the only candidate demonstrating conviction and I think he surprised most with this answers. If Ron Paul can continue to get his message across he'll be a great contender come primary time.

Posted by: Steven Chase | May 4, 2007 12:48 PM | Report abuse

another media outlet trying to taint Ron Paul... God bless the internet though!

Ron Paul is VERY MUCH electable!! maybe not to the media -- who wants to destroy the Constitution -- but to We The People!!

It is our Duty to spread awareness of Ron Paul!

God bless America.

Posted by: Don't tread on me. | May 4, 2007 12:46 PM | Report abuse

Winner: Romney
Loser: Giuliani

Giuliani did not look like a front runner. Romney looked the most presidential. McCain probably didn't help or hurt himself. Both Romney and McCain will get a boost from Giuliani dropping in the polls.

Posted by: Bethan | May 4, 2007 12:44 PM | Report abuse

The only thing new I got out of this debate was, to a man, "A great day when Roe v Wade is overturned". Turn it over to each state to ok or not ok abortion. All the republican canidates seem to believe, same as for embronic stem cell research from left over and to be discarded embryos is murder, abortion is also murder. How do they justify murder by state but not federal. Sounds disingenious to me, and a cop out. Ok for states to allow "murder" in their minds. I believe an abortion or two 50 or 60 years ago would have raised the IQ level of available canidates on that stage.

Posted by: EdA | May 4, 2007 12:44 PM | Report abuse

A bunch of old nostalgic white guys, half of whom don't believe in evolution! Just what America needs to move forward into the 21st Century.

Posted by: thebob.bob | May 4, 2007 12:41 PM | Report abuse

Eight years of Republicans in control (or is it out of control) is enough.

Posted by: James | May 4, 2007 12:41 PM | Report abuse

I think the most notable fact is that the Democrats refused to debate on a FOX NEWS -sponsored debate, saying that FOX was too conservative-leaning - yet the Republicans are perfectly willing to go on an MSNBC-sponsored debate, moderated by obvious Republican-hating Chris Matthews -- now which party wants to speak to the American people, and which party wants only to speak to "their own"?

Posted by: Missourimule | May 4, 2007 12:33 PM | Report abuse

I will register as a Republican just to vote for Ron Paul in the primary, and then I will vote for Ron Paul in the election, no matter what party nominates him, or even if he runs as an independent.

There is not a single other presidential candidate worth voting for, except possibly Kucinich, but Ron Paul is better.

Posted by: wingedearth | May 4, 2007 12:28 PM | Report abuse

Ron Paul stole the show.

Posted by: Anonymous | May 4, 2007 12:27 PM | Report abuse

blarg, et al -I agree - it is inconceivable that anyone not accept evolution as a proven theory, (as much as theory can be proven). To me, and I'm sure many others, having faith in God and belief in evolution are not mutually exclusive.

I think Duncan Hunter stood out among the 2nd tiers candidates for that reason, and also for his hawkish stance which I loved. He would be my pcik for a VP.

Posted by: proudtobeGOP | May 4, 2007 12:18 PM | Report abuse

More debate analysis
http://www.political-buzz.com/

Posted by: matt | May 4, 2007 12:15 PM | Report abuse

Oh, sorry progressive, I didn't see that you already said which candidates don't believe in evolution.

Mike Huckabee doesn't believe in evolution.

Sam Brownback doesn't believe in evolution.

Tom Tancredo doesn't believe in evolution.


There is too much concern about kids learning their math and science for an anti-science candidate to get elected, even in the Republican primary. Look what is already happening in the school boards across the country.

Scientists debate on the details of exactly HOW evolution does what it does, but WHETHER it occurs or not is universally accepted by scientists.

Americans seem to be coming to grips with this fact, as evidenced by school board votes across America.

Anti-evolution is anti-science and anti-science is quite unpopular these years.

Posted by: Golgi | May 4, 2007 11:58 AM | Report abuse

I give Rudy credit for his remarks on abortion, showing that he has a big pair, but he ain't getting the nomination, which means one of these other right-wing, clueless freaks will get it, which means the GOP can probably kiss off '08.

Posted by: Loudoun Voter | May 4, 2007 11:49 AM | Report abuse

oh yeah, on topic: I didn't watch the debate, but don't really need to; I don't much care for any of the front-runners & don't see them changing my mind. I find Giuliani to be a sleazeball, McCain is now out of touch & Romney is another flip-floppin' Massachusetts politician of convenience. When the GOP returns to its small government, keep-the-gov-out-of-my-business roots, I'll start voting for them. As long as they're pandering to social conservatives, I'm not interested.

Posted by: bsimon | May 4, 2007 11:37 AM | Report abuse

Mark in Austin asks
"If any of you who are split ticket voters and not totally predetermined to vote R or D have already given your opinions, but not id'd yourself as independent or still looking, would you please do so?"

I'm in that camp, but haven't voted for many repubs. The last one I voted for ended up joining the Independance Party - which is the one Jesse V was elected under, for gov of MN. Having said that i wanted McCain in 2000, but the GOP primary voters really fouled things up. In 2006 I voted for IP candidates in the elections where I could, plus a Green and a DFL (local Dems). In 2000 & 2004 I voted for the Libertarian Pres candidates. So call me the schizophrenic ticket.

Posted by: bsimon | May 4, 2007 11:34 AM | Report abuse

proudtobeGOP: thanks for reminding us why your party is currently at the beginning of a very long losing streak.

Posted by: Loudoun Voter | May 4, 2007 11:28 AM | Report abuse

I have not watched my tape yet and will not get to do so until Sunday.

If any of you who are split ticket voters and not totally predetermined to vote R or D have already given your opinions, but not id'd yourself as independent or still looking, would you please do so?

I discount the "Ron Paul effect" -
wherein he says something logical or actually libertarian. Unfortunately I am familiar with him over a 20+ year period - even a blind pig can turn up an acorn, now and then.

While I will draw my own conclusions, the observations of others who are not "pre-comitted"
may shed more light than heat for me. Thanks, in advance.

Posted by: Mark in Austin | May 4, 2007 11:27 AM | Report abuse

I saw both the democratic and republican debates and I was struck by how better the republicans performed in their answers and I think it had to do a lot with the questions they were given. The republican debate had questions that were much more specific (Cudos to Chris and his producers). Just contrast the questions on
irrelevant nonsense like the "hair cuts", who is your favorite supreme court judge to: what do we have to do to win in Iraq. Specific questions evoke specific answers and it sure made the candidates sound better. Off-the-wall questions lead to bizarre answers and desperate attempts to get their talking points accross which
explains why many of the democrats went over-time. Also the questions were more equally balanced with the republican candidates and didn't favor anyone in particular. I hope the next democratic presidential debate fixes that. FYI I am not a republican; I am a democrat who supports Bill Richardson.

Posted by: Western NY geologist | May 4, 2007 11:08 AM | Report abuse

To the dems on the board: After Ron Paul fails to get the Rep nomination but then runs as the Liberterian candidate, would you consider voting for him over a GENERIC dem candidate. If not what about over a SPECIFIC dem frontrunner/near frontrunner?

Posted by: DanW | May 4, 2007 10:55 AM | Report abuse

"Second observation: If anything, the current Republican contenders for the White House came off last night appearing like a huddled cult of personality in their unwavering adoration for Ronald Reagan. Candidates last night went out of their way to invoke Reagan's name a whopping number of 19 times. It seemed less of an honest debate than a chorus of unbalanced Reaganite aficionados."

Hey, now you know how Republicans feel when Democrats start going on about John F. Kennedy.

Posted by: Kevin | May 4, 2007 10:44 AM | Report abuse

Which 3 of the 10 candidates don't believe in evolution?

Posted by: Golgi | May 4, 2007 10:30 AM | Report abuse

All the R candidates were very good, I thought. I thought the questions were tougher than for the dem debate, but the candidates showed strength and command of subject matter, except for Tommy Thompson who made himself look really bad.

Let's face it, even our fringe candidate Ron Paul was better than any of the dems.

Posted by: proudtobeGOP | May 4, 2007 10:11 AM | Report abuse

From elsewhere in the WaPo: "GOP Field United On War, Divided On Social Issues"

Perhaps this should be altered to read "GOP Field United On Losing in 2008, Divided On Social Issues."

Posted by: Judge C. Crater | May 4, 2007 9:45 AM | Report abuse

There was one question that seems not to have gotten much response from the public: the question about firing someone because of his or her sexual orientation. I was dumbfounded that the candidate responded in the positive that this was a criterion for someone to be dismissed from a job. The question may as well have been "would you discriminate on the basis of race, sex, religion, origin, hair color, political party, etc." Which part of America were they speaking to? Why wasn't the follow up question asked, "do you believe in any civil rights legislation?"
This is not a gay issue but an equality issue that should have been challenged by the host.

And speaking of Chris Matthews, he is the perfect example of the symbiotic relationship that exists between pundits and politicians. They're all sleeping in the same bed claiming they're not screwing each other while at the same time screwing the public up the wazoo. The only cable "news" person worth his salt is Keith O. of MSNBC who can at least provide some type analysis and intelligence to "corporate news". And yes, I think the Clinton question was just plain stupid. He actually gave Bubba a roundabout compliment and "testosterony" to the influence Clinton still has on large portion of the electorate.

Posted by: glenknowles | May 4, 2007 9:00 AM | Report abuse

Tommy Thompson didn't even know the correct number of U.S. troops killed or injured in Iraq. He doesn't have a clue.

Posted by: Jack Sprat | May 4, 2007 8:46 AM | Report abuse

'Reagan's tactic of outspending the Soviet Union in the Cold War has come home to roost. The War on Terrorism has been a very low-cost way for opponents of the U.S. to force us into endless spending '

I thought this was an astute observation. This is exactly what bin Ladin said we would do after 9/11 -- spend ourselves into oblivion and take away our own civil right. Everything we have done since then has played directly into his hands. And electing another republican reactionary will be exactly what he wants -- a fool to be duped into the global religious war bin Ladin so fervently desires.

And the ones who don't believe in evolution -- how are they different from the Taliban or al-queda? After all, it was reverting to primitism and medieval fundamentalism that destroyed the worldwide scientific, academic and military superiority that the Arab world once enjoyed. It would be easy enough for the US to revert to backward ignorance and superstititon. There's plenty of fertile ground for that even right now. You can see right here there are plenty of folks who read this blog who would be happy to live in abject simple-mindedness and ignorance -- and do.

God, what a crop of puppets -- with bin Ladin and the ghost of the Alzheimer Ronnie pulling their strings.

Posted by: drindl | May 4, 2007 8:43 AM | Report abuse

Ron Paul is a cross between Ross Perot and David Duke.

Posted by: anon | May 4, 2007 8:36 AM | Report abuse

And by the way, Ron Paul is a bigot.

"If you have ever been robbed by a black teen-aged male, you know unbelievably fleet-footed they can be."

"Given the inefficiencies of what the DC laughably calls the criminal justice system, I think we can safely assume that 95 percent of the black males in that city are semi-criminal or criminal."

"Opinion polls consistently show that only five percent of blacks have sensible political opinions, i.e. support the free market, individual liberty and the end of welfare and affirmative action."

Source: http://www.shanesklar.com/news_DETAILS.php?news_ID=49

Do not be confused into thinking this lunatic is "refreshing".

Posted by: Random Guy | May 4, 2007 8:30 AM | Report abuse

Anyone else notice that like three or four of the Rpeublicans running for President of the United States don't believe in evolution?

A scary bunch.

Posted by: Rico | May 4, 2007 8:22 AM | Report abuse

Ron Paul is the only candidate who seemed to stand apart from the rest, who all resemble white males who usher at church, if only to raise their public profiles.

Paul's assertion that the privacy of the federal government has increased while the privacy of its citizens has declined was a point the rest of the field didn't want to touch. They should have.

Romney may be a nice fellow, and I don't give a care what his religion is or isn't, but he's way too made up. He looks cadaverish.

John McCain was described in this forum as the Manchurian Candidate, one who will say anything to get elected. I agree. He has no credibility and insists that we can "win" the war in Iraq, though he doesn't have a clue what winning looks like. Early in the debate, he was frothing.

To his credit, Tommy Thompson was the only candidate who offered a plan to get out of Iraq. We don't have to take the vote whether Iraqi's want us there, Tommy. They've already said so. But you get credit for having a plan and sharing it.

These middle- to senior-aged white males offer little to the rest of America. This party has not had an original idea in a half-century. If I hear another Republican proclaim that he believes in "strong national defense, a strong national economy and strong families" I'm going to barf on my computer. Who doesn't want that? It's a tired GOP bromide. If the media allows that to go unchallenged, then a pox on their houses.

It's interesting that they all kiss the ass of Ronald Reagan's ghost. People forget that Reagan ran up huge deficits (only corrected during Clinton's term), let thousands die of AIDS (he didn't fund one dime of AIDS research), but he funded illegal death squads in Central America. He increased the size of the federal government and degregulated the banking industry. Took us a long time to pay for that boner. Ronald Reagan had a rosey smile, but that's about it. "Mr. and Mrs. America, Ms. and Mr. Single America, tear down this Reagan facade."

Posted by: RD | May 4, 2007 8:15 AM | Report abuse

I thought it was despicable how they all bowed and scraped at the feet of St. Ronald Reagan.

Don't they remember that Reagan had his share of scandal and low key questionable activities that were ignored by the media in those days? Not to mention the polarizing class-ism that characterizes the Reagan era. Rich got richer, poor got ignored.

In today's divisive and scandal rich climate, emulating Reagan is a recipe for failure, not success.

Posted by: Random Guy | May 4, 2007 8:09 AM | Report abuse

USAT points out that photographers weren't allowed to take pictures of Rice and Moualem shaking hands. Many see the meeting as a sign of a change in policy from an administration that until recently refused to talk to Syria and even criticized House Speaker Nancy Pelosi for traveling to Damascus.

Posted by: more hypocrisy | May 4, 2007 8:04 AM | Report abuse

This debate was one worth watching. There were a number of things I took away from having seen it.

The most obvious observation was how uncomfortably confrontational and bloodthirsty the sea Republican candidates appeared to be, given their comments on a hypothetical war with Iran and the hunt for bin Laden. Regarding the latter, Romney and McCain made the most disturbing statements, advocating an imminent death for bin Laden as a means for plugging their own candidacy. Its like we've regressed to Roman times, choosing our leaders based upon their naked brutality and vengefulness.

Second observation: If anything, the current Republican contenders for the White House came off last night appearing like a huddled cult of personality in their unwavering adoration for Ronald Reagan. Candidates last night went out of their way to invoke Reagan's name a whopping number of 19 times. It seemed less of an honest debate than a chorus of unbalanced Reaganite aficionados.

Third observation: What is the deal with Reagan and the Republican Party these days? The relentless ogling over the former president really detracted from the debate, preventing the candidates from honestly expressing their personal views on a variety of dire national issues. In contrast, President Bush was only referred to 4 times, which goes to show how eager the candidates are to avoid being critical of the current Administration's policies, even if simply constructively critical over finding a new direction to lead their party. Not one of the candidates last night, save for the refreshing Rep. Ron Paul of TX, offered any ideas on substantive issues outside of national defense. Absolute zero discussion of education, poverty, healthcare, social security, intolerance, etc. Rather, they spent their time during the debate on wedge issues that affect a minority of Americans at any given time, Reagan, the military and, of course, taxes

Overall, an evasive and pugnacious spectacle.

Posted by: Ben | May 4, 2007 8:02 AM | Report abuse

Ron Paul is the only honest man in politics.

It's unfortunate that only pathological liars, like Bill Clinton, can do well in American politics.

Posted by: stewart | May 4, 2007 8:01 AM | Report abuse

Chris Matthews is a Republican in Democrat clothing.

Posted by: Jack Sprat | May 4, 2007 7:55 AM | Report abuse

Romney was the anti-Bush in that he was the most telegenic, most prepared and a governor with articulated foreign policy views. He clearly outdid the frontrunner and should be pushing for as many more debates as possible. Imagine having a president able to be comfortable, commanding and persuasive in front a TV camera! The importance of that can't be understated, as demonstrated the last eight years. He'd be great against whomever the Dems put across him in the final election.

Posted by: Richard | May 4, 2007 7:54 AM | Report abuse

In the context of politics, Mr. Bush and his administration have served up the 2008 Preidential election to the Democrats on a silver platter. Despite that, the Democrats will find a way to lose. They will snatch defeat from the jaws of victory. I watched the debate and it was refreshing to see adults on the stage vice what the Democrats put forth in their debate------ Kucinich, overly rehearsed Hilla, Baby Obama, *who* Gravel. YIKES! McCain*s better days are behind him. No to Rudy. Romney sounded best. Absolute respect for Brownback's pro-life stance----- conception till natural death. Gilmore did real well as governor. Scary thought: Hilla, President. VP: ?. Speaker of the House: San Fran Nan. Again, despite all odds, the Democrats will lose in 2008.

Posted by: MtMav | May 4, 2007 7:53 AM | Report abuse

Oddly, a national poll came out two days ago that has Both Guiliani and McCain beating both Obama and Hillary. This was the same poll that Obama is touting that says he pulled ahead of Hillary, yet he forgot to mention republicans beat him.

Posted by: Karen | May 4, 2007 7:36 AM | Report abuse

Guiliani kept wrapping 9/11 around himself like a blanket, it was getting very tiresome. It's also very odd, because his stance (IIRC), is that the Clinton presidency did nothing to promote anti-terrorism - that when the World Trade Center was first attacked was when they should have gotten serious.

Ok, then Rudy, why did you put the Command Control Center in the World Trade Center????

Anything Guliani did on 9/11 and afterward was just reaction, not prevention. I also spit on his fear-mongering, that having a Republican in the WH means we'll be on the offensive. This is the same line Bush used last election, and of course, look at all the fun things that's happened since then.

As a Democrat, I was most impressed by Ron Paul.

I also found it ironic that this event was held at the Reagan Library...Reagan's tactic of outspending the Soviet Union in the Cold War has come home to roost. The War on Terrorism has been a very low-cost way for opponents of the U.S. to force us into endless spending - the trick is that this isn't a Cold War with an obvious military force.

Posted by: Michelle | May 4, 2007 7:34 AM | Report abuse

ALL THESE CONTENDERS SUFFER FROM PD [Political Dysfunction]. It is endemic in the Republican Party. In advanced stages, the victim becomes a warmonger and an Idealogue. George Yosemite Sam Bush, who is clearly in the end stages of PD, shows total disconnect from reality and disarticulated speech. PD is notoriously treatment resistant, but joining the Democratic Party can provide some relief--at least to the Country.

Posted by: Arcadian | May 4, 2007 6:37 AM | Report abuse

Romney harped incessantly on his family values mantra and Giuliani reminded us about 100 times that he was mayor of NY. And of course McCain was a soldier. Actually, the only Republican who has any interest at all in the problems of working class and middle class Americans is Tancredo, and his solutions may be wacko.

Posted by: worker bee | May 4, 2007 6:33 AM | Report abuse

I disagreed with Reagan about a lot of things, and I think his legacy is much more of mixed bag than some like to believe, but he was certainly not an "empty suit". He sincerely believed we could win the Cold War (without invading Eastern Europe or occupying Russia, by the way), and he sincerely believed the American economy would be more efficient if we reduced the role of the federal government. And he largely got his way, although again I think the long term consequences of some of his policies are less of an unadulterated good than some people like to acknowledge (eg, his foreign policies did help hasten the demise of the Soviet Union, but also helped hastened the rise of the likes of Bin Laden and Saddam, and his economic policies did help the US economy grow, but also fostered a belief on the part of some that deficits do not matter and it is OK to shift the burden of paying for government spending to future taxpayers).

Posted by: DTM | May 4, 2007 6:27 AM | Report abuse

Reagan was the ultimate empty suit and his presidency turned out fine.

Posted by: green heron | May 4, 2007 5:58 AM | Report abuse

It's funny how Romney can grinningly take a mixture of ambition, insincerity, condescension, and total lack of respect for core values, and make it look like conviction and competence. I hope anyone who falls for that will ask for references from any Massachusetts resident. After four years of his pretend governorship (he was never here, and did nothing the few days he was here) we're kind of at the "fool us once, shame on you; fool us twice, shame on us" place now. He couldn't get elected dog catcher in this state today.

Posted by: lenstewart | May 4, 2007 5:49 AM | Report abuse

Just as clearly the real winner of the Democratic debate was Gravel, but almost no one in the press will admit it, the real winner of this debate was Ron Paul. Of course, by "winner" I do not mean the person who necessarily had the smoothest presentation or said things with which I personally agree. But like Gravel, I think Paul stood out because he spoke the truth as he saw it and was not shy about actually criticizing his fellow candidates (and in that sense he was actually debating, rather than just participating in a joint press conference).

And I thought Paul was absolutely devastating when he articulated what Republicans used to stand for when it came to foreign policy, from Eisenhower right up to George W. Bush as of the 2000 election. Similarly, his answer about abolishing the IRS, which would require a fundamental shift in spending policy, stood in stark contrast to the shockingly weak answers a group of Republicans gave to what should have been the ultimate softball for them (What tax would you like to cut?). In a time when Republicans are struggling for a return to principles, as far as I could tell only Paul laid out a consistent vision of what conservativism stands for, at least to him.

For loser I would nominate Romney. Pandering is a mainstay of politics, but it requires a light touch, at least on TV. Romney's pandering was a tidal wave of molasses. His "Gosh, I love America from sea to shining sea and can't say one darn negative thing about any of you fine folks" answer reminded me of something out of a grade school patriotic speech contest (google "Mr. Lisa Goes to Washington"). And although I don't know if there is actually a way for him to get around this problem, I doubt his evidence that his flip-flop on abortion was not political opportunism (it happened all of two years ago! did I mention I was no longer running for governor in Massachusetts at the time?) satisfied social conservatives. Indeed, how much sense does it make to claim that why contemplating actual abortions did not make him pro-life, contemplating embryonic stem cell research did?

By the way, aside perhaps from the evolution question, I thought the most intriguing straw poll moment was about changing the Constitution to allow people like the Governator to run for President. There was a lot of joking, but also a lot of apparent conviction that such a change should not be made, which to me is quite odd (it makes little sense to me to trust him as Governor of our most populous state, but not as President--is the concern that he is going to sell us out to Austria?) And a blanket respect for "original intent" is no answer--the framers of the Constitution presumably put the Amendment process in place for a reason, and indeed it would be logically inconsistent to say you respected their original intent and so would never use the Amendment process that they explicitly provided.

Posted by: DTM | May 4, 2007 5:44 AM | Report abuse

All of these candidates are irrelevent. It is a Democrat in 2008. However, one thing totally mystifies me, this adulation of Ronald Reagan, an abject failure as president, who nearly drove the country into bankruptcy and made it ok to treat the poor and disadvantaged like garbage. What a legacy! If Reagan is the Republicans idea of a heroic president, they should disband.

Posted by: Mark | May 4, 2007 5:43 AM | Report abuse

I had never heard of Ron Paul. I had only limited interest in who the republicans pick this time around anyway (limited meaning Hillary will peak my interest in the Repub ticket). I saw what I expected. McCain looked like a shell of the guy in 1999. Giulliani looked like the MAYOR of NYC. Romney was too polished and actually looks like a slick flip flopper (Kerry and Clinton combined).

But Ron Paul. WOW. Doubt he is a viable candidate, but that should be the story. He was great.

Posted by: Tim | May 4, 2007 2:28 AM | Report abuse

I've been reading around the internet and one thing that Peggy Noonan said I thought was interesting was that Paul (whom she called intellectually serious) was only candidate who critized the war and clearly broke with the Bush Administration. None of the other candidates did. John McCain said the war was mismanged, but who's responsible for this John, is it all Don Rumsfeld's fault? Huckabee said that Bush was misled by his silk-tie advisers instead of generals with mud and blood on their boots. So is Bush to blame for listening to the wrong people? Did he just make an honest mistake? It's all the civilians fault? I've got news for you Governor, not every general gets mud on their boots. Some like to work behind desks. And not every one of them is brilliant about the challenges we face in Iraq. For every Lee there's a Ben Butler.

It seems as though as every Republican wants to pretend somebody else screwed the war up except the man in charge, George Bush II. They sound like the kind of people who think that just by firing the pitching coach the baseball team will suddenly get better. Guess what, unless you do repudiate the President or at least be honest about his failings, you'll get to defend that record in the fall like it or not and then what will you have to say to Hilary Clinton, Barak Obama or John Edwards? You had the same intelligence I did? It seemed like a good idea at the time? Mistakes were made? Give us another chance? Yuck! Talk about being a Hubert Humphrey.

Only Ron Paul can avoid this fate.

Posted by: Sean Scallon | May 4, 2007 1:54 AM | Report abuse

I agree with B20's point too by the way. Giuliani was pretty much right in his answer, and I'm sure there are some Democrats who can't differentiate Sunni/Shia themselves. Its not one of those questions that is off the top of their heads like a preprogrammed talking point (but I guess now it will be).

Posted by: jojo | May 4, 2007 1:18 AM | Report abuse

Give props to Ron Paul for not being a bad sport like Mike Gravel.

Chris Matthews was a sub-par moderator. Many of his questions were either transparent (like the abortion question down the line, in an attempt to trick Giuliani), outdated (Terry Schiavo), or a waste of time with obvious answers (Would you be happy with Clintons in the White House again? duh......).

Posted by: jojo | May 4, 2007 1:15 AM | Report abuse

I don't know why I even listen to what Republicans have to say. I can't agree with them on anything. Most Republicans only care about two things a) themselves, and b) lower taxes. I have a few Republican friends but I don't know why.

Posted by: Larry Salas | May 4, 2007 1:02 AM | Report abuse

ROMNEY is the ultimate winner. He did an excellent presentation in the debate. With charisma, poise, articulateness, no wonder,...he's definitely, the most presidential of them all!

This is true without any shadows of doubt!

Posted by: mikednc | May 4, 2007 12:59 AM | Report abuse

Giuliani did a lot of careful dancing on his social stances, and seemed to be just an average politician. As someone who hasn't been following the republicans closely I'd say he won. It seems that the polls agree with me but most political observers don't. I suppose he underperformed expectations.

McCain had some good lines but was totally out of sync, he seemed incredibly forced. The "gates of hell" line may stick with him. Very aggressive, perhaps to compensate for his advanced age?

Romney seemed incredibly insipid. He seems to take joy in finding the exact right position for the moment. Very smooth, though it seems to have rubbed most the wrong way.

Yay Thompson for saying businesses should be able to fire gays, Hunter for saying the government is good at killing people, and Brownback, Huckabee, and Tancredo for saying you don't believe in evolution. Grats guys, welcome to the reject bin.

Posted by: Nissl | May 3, 2007 11:51 PM | Report abuse

"Erik notice there are only two types of Rape-Public-Cans left 1. SHEEP still dining on the dung curds of a failed administration and 2. RATS jumping ship to save their smarmy carca"

And Ron Paul, who voted against the Iraq War on Day One. And also voted against the Patriot Act on Day One.

Paul may be unelectable. But if you believe in limited government, he's the only choice.

Posted by: Brian | May 3, 2007 11:43 PM | Report abuse

"The real loser was Chris Matthews. Has there ever been a bigger idiot on television?"

I've about decided that he is bipolar. I find his impulsive and barely controlled giggling very distracting. And yeah, some of those questions were downright bizarre. I'm a liberal by the way.

Posted by: B2O | May 3, 2007 11:43 PM | Report abuse

"At least 3 hands went up as not believing in evolution. The camera cut away too quickly to identify them. Such a response should disqualify anyone with aspirations to be president."

Yes, I noted that with sadness. It's the 21st century people. Science is not your enemy. Unless you're a Republican, apparently. Sigh. Does this country even want to survive?

Posted by: B2O | May 3, 2007 11:38 PM | Report abuse

I THINK THAT VERY FEW PEOPLE COULD UNDERSTAND RON PAUL'S MESSAGE. IT WAS HOWEVER IN MY OPINION THE WINNER.

ON THE OTHER HAND ROMNEY WAS EASILY THE MOST ARTICULATE AND WELL ORGASNIZED. OVERALL ROMNEY WON THE DEBATE ON STLYE AND TV IMAGE.

Posted by: Gerald Cullen | May 3, 2007 11:38 PM | Report abuse

I'm slightly flummoxed by Chris' take on Giuliani's response to the Sunni/Shia question:

"[Giuliani] seemed slightly flummoxed on a question about the difference between Sunni and Shia..."

Giuliani got this obscure but important (considering we're in the middle of these peoples' civil war) question dead-on correct, after hemming for only a split second. Considering that neither our current president nor (easily) 95% of the public would even have a clue about this, I can only say to Chris, "WTF?".

Posted by: B2O | May 3, 2007 11:36 PM | Report abuse

Some of the questions were just stupid. Bill Clinton in the White House? Huh? And Chris Matthews sounded like an auctioneer, he was talking so fast.

Posted by: Washington Dame | May 3, 2007 11:34 PM | Report abuse

I am glad you narrowed it down to three candidates. I thought there were 10. That would have been too complicated.

Regards

Posted by: LFB | May 3, 2007 11:25 PM | Report abuse

US President Tim Kalemkarian, US Senate Tim Kalemkarian, US House Tim Kalemkarian: best major candidate.

Posted by: anonymous | May 3, 2007 11:13 PM | Report abuse

Erik notice there are only two types of Rape-Public-Cans left 1. SHEEP still dining on the dung curds of a failed administration and 2. RATS jumping ship to save their smarmy carcas. How does your curd taste today? Good news is you have plenty of water you have been carrying to wash it down. So impotent, so incompetent, so irrelevent.

Posted by: Heterodoxy | May 3, 2007 11:03 PM | Report abuse

Brownback, Huckabee, and Tancredo raised their hands and indicated that they do not believe in evolution. The follow-up question should be: do you believe in Santa Claus and the Easter Bunny?

Freaks and xenophobes.

Once again, McCain is the Manchurian Candidate who will do or say anything to be President. But Rudy is even more of a demagogue, if that's even possible.

Posted by: Progressive | May 3, 2007 10:57 PM | Report abuse

At least the GOP has some code of conduct in not bad mouthing each other unlike the touchy feely liberals. I love how the open minded and tolarent Democrats are only open minded and tolerant so long as you don't disagree with them. However,don't worry Chris, whenever I ready any Washington Post article on politics, especially the GOP, not only do I take it with a grain of salt, I bring the whole damn salt shaker. Not too hard to determine the political leanings of the Post when I read the headlines. I only check out the Post for Redskins info. anyway.

Posted by: Erik | May 3, 2007 10:49 PM | Report abuse

Political reporters are slaves to polls, and secondarily to the campaign consultants they use as their sources (or vice versa).

That's the context in which we must take Cilizza's emphasis on McCain, Romney and Giuliani, the three candidates that at this moment lead in polls of Republicans.

Posted by: Zathras | May 3, 2007 10:48 PM | Report abuse

During the anthrax scare, Tommy Thompson (think he was in the Bush cabinet then) said that one of the post office officials only had the ''sniffles'' and a couple of days later he was dead of anthrax. With that in mind, it was black homor to hear him talk about health care.

Posted by: Patricia Barry | May 3, 2007 10:42 PM | Report abuse

What a bunch of impotent empty suits. Devoid of personal accountability they fantasize about the Reagan era as if we need to turn back time. They hung their hat on a dry drunk awol male cheerleader and too stupid to know their titanic has sunk.

Posted by: Your Conscience | May 3, 2007 10:35 PM | Report abuse

The real loser was Chris Matthews. Has there ever been a bigger idiot on television? How can a democratic congressional aide/Jimmy Carter speech writer/liberal lunatic be the moderator for a republican debate? The questions were out of a toddler classroom. Is he supposed to be taken seriously? He is obviously in love with Bill Clinton and dreams about his nose at night, or some weird sex thing, and his obsession with Karl Rove seemed very strange. Beside being totally irrelevant, I felt I was watching Chris Matthews with his psychotherapist after an "episode". Chris Matthews and MSNBC are a true embarrassment.

Posted by: Karen | May 3, 2007 10:33 PM | Report abuse

"At least 3 hands went up as not believing in evolution."

I thought I saw that too. No doubt there will be a full report very soon.

Posted by: Anon | May 3, 2007 10:28 PM | Report abuse

Overall, I thought all the front runners were trying to heard. Everyone had a strong tendency to turn every answer into a pre-scripted sound bite, regardless of whether the pre-scripted sound bite had anything to do with the actual question. At one point, IIRC, someone turned a question on "which current cabinet member would you keep?" into a rant on border security.

McCain, who at least often answered the questions, muffed a perfectly good opportunity when asked, "Every cab driver knew what Ronald Reagan stood for, fighting communism and smaller government. What do you stand for?" This was begging for a one sentence answer, e.g., "Down with Islamic facism, down with the deficit." Instead, he tried to fill out his 30 seconds.

The no-hopers often did better than the front runners. I guess because they had nothing to lose and could relax and swing for the fences. Ron Paul -- who must know he is completely unelectable -- seemed particularly crisp.

Posted by: Anon | May 3, 2007 10:19 PM | Report abuse

At least 3 hands went up as not believing in evolution. The camera cut away too quickly to identify them. Such a response should disqualify anyone with aspirations to be president.

Posted by: Ceci | May 3, 2007 10:16 PM | Report abuse

OMG! The only thing that "rang false" with Romney was his lame line about killing bin-Laden. Geeze...is the religious right so hard up for a credible candidate that they are willing to believe that Romney suddenly became pro-life and would now support the over turning of Roe V. Wade because of a debate on stem cell research. That pathetic excuse for Romney's obvious opportunistic flip flop on abortion actually rings true to Republicans. That's so sad.

Posted by: melanie | May 3, 2007 10:15 PM | Report abuse

"slightly flummoxed on a question about the difference between Sunni and Shia"

Slightly flummoxed? He looked like he was going to be sick, though he did have an idea of the right answer, lucky for him!

Anyway, he did a much better job than Bush, who, when asked about the Taliban in a pre-9/11 interview, thought they were a musical group.

Posted by: Debate Watcher | May 3, 2007 10:09 PM | Report abuse

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