Dear Commons Community,
The long-awaited, first Republican presidential candidates’ debate last night was telling. It is obvious that rather than having a lot of good candidates, the Republican Party has a problem. The ten candidates invited to the debate (there were also another seven candidates not invited) did not stir the audience nor will they stir the American people come election. At this point, the election is Hillary Clinton’s (assuming she is the Democratic Party nominee) to lose. Don’t assume that the Democrats are not capable of doing so. Remember Al Gore in 2000. As for the debate.
Donald Trump by virtue of his media personality and lead in the polls drew much of the attention away from the other candidates. I thought the crowd was hostile to Trump which is understandable given his bombastic personality and glib answers.
Jeb Bush was okay but is still seen as too moderate.
Scott Walker held his own which will appeal to diehard conservatives.
Marco Rubio did well
John Kasich did well.
Chris Christie and Rand Paul had a heated exchange about hugging President Obama.
And the list goes on.
I believe Paul Krugman summarized the Republican dilemma best.
“…if he [Trump] is eventually pushed aside, pay no attention to all the analyses you will read declaring a return to normal politics. That’s not going to happen; normal politics left the G.O.P. a long time ago. At most, we’ll see a return to normal hypocrisy, the kind that cloaks radical policies and contempt for evidence in conventional-sounding rhetoric. And that won’t be an improvement.”
For further analysis about the debate, check out Nate Cohn on The Upshot.