4th Republican Debate


Victor Rosado

Staff Writer

News 4th RepublicanLast night’s fourth Republican presidential debate reinforced our perceptions of the GOP field’s best debaters (Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio); it probably stopped the bleeding for Jeb Bush, and it mostly hurt the two frontrunners (Ben Carson and Donald Trump) because of the heavy policy discussion. It did not provide the drama and excitement that the first Fox News debate and the CNBC debate two weeks ago offered, but it was hardly dull.

Let’s go through each candidate; Donald Trump, the leader in the Republican polls, came across as a forgetful and uninformed candidate. More specifically, his opinions on foreign policy on the Russian and ISIS conflict in the Middle East were not viewed as completely accurate. Trump vigorously sells Russian intervention as a way for the US to not get involved. He insisted; No, the U.S. should not be the world’s policeman, and “Yes, the federal government should deport all undocumented immigrants and build a wall”. Overall the Republican frontrunner is still at the top, trumping the competition in the polls.

Ben Carson, the retired neurosurgeon, is sticking with what works: offering supporters more of the same mild-mannered, reserved demeanor that has shot him into a strong race with Trump. He was not very active in the heats of the debate but in the last couple of minutes he stated, “In the two hours of this — of this debate, five people have died from drug-related deaths, $100 million has been added to our national debt, 200 babies have been killed by abortionists, and two veterans have taken their lives out of despair.

“This is a narrative that we can change, not we the Democrats, not we the Republicans, but we the people of America, because there is something special about this nation, and we must embrace it and be proud of it and never give it away for the sake of political correctness,” he continued.

With this statement he is still standing strong, the candidate that’s set on morality and honestly.

Perhaps Mark Rubio’s most shining moment in this debate was his argument with Senator Rand Paul over military spending, stating “We can’t even have an economy if we’re not safe,” Rubio argued. “Yes I believe the world — I don’t believe, I know the world is a safer and better place when America is the strongest military power in the world.” This got him a lot of notoriety and showed the crowd that under pressure, Rubio stands strong.  His polls are steadily going up and he is catching up strong in third place.

Ted Cruz showed off his amazing debating skills that go back to his time at Princeton. Those skills may keep him in for the long hall but will not give him the win. He hit one snag, reminding people of a memorable 2011 debate moment when Rick Perry forgot the name of the third agency he would eliminate. Cruz, naming five federal agencies he would abolish, named just four — twice naming the Department of Commerce, leaving the Department of Education off of his list.

Jeb Bush did much better in this debate than the lasts, but once again seemed to confirm the notion that no one wants another Bush in office. Bush forced his way into more speaking time, got his points across more clearly and concisely, and perhaps most importantly didn’t pick a fight he wasn’t going to win against Rubio.

Carly Fiorina gained more footing in this race after this debate. She shined specifically in the conversation of foreign policy, skipping from country to country in the Middle East after laying out specific steps she would take to bolster the U.S.’s standing in the face of Russian aggression, Fiorina came away breathless, over time, but very successful.

Lastly we have John Kasich and Rand Paul. John had a great argument with Bush over immigration reform, while Rand Paul targeted Rubio over his non conservative views about military spending. They both got great points across but seeing that they are in the lower single digits of the polls, timing is wrong for these senators.

Overall the debate was a success in getting the candidates’ views out on economy and foreign policy.