Boots & Sabers

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2035, 06 Aug 15

First GOP Debate (updating…)

It’s on now… thoughts? I’ll have some later.

OK, a few comments…

– Trump is a jerk. I thought that tonight was a chance for him to pivot to being a serious candidate, but he was his usual boorish self.

– Fox News did a disservice to the viewers by giving Trump so much time to ramble at the expense of other candidates. Fox News wanted the zingers and the headlines.

– Some of the questions asked were actually pretty good. They were specific and picked at each candidate’s weaknesses.

– Ben Carson doesn’t have the best delivery, but I love what he has to say.

– The shouting match between Paul and Christie about NSA records collections was interesting, but realize it was between two candidates who have the same chance of winning the nomination. And that chance is statistically indistinguishable from zero.

– Trump’s answer on abortion was incomprehensible.

– So far, Walker’s answers have been solid, but he’s almost invisible. Perhaps it’s his plan to sit back and let some of the other candidates flame out?

– Walker’s “mush” vs. “steel” answer was excellent. That will be his headline tomorrow.

– Carson is hilarious, as well as brilliant. He seemed very relaxed and comfortable in his own skin.

– Rubio’s biography is so compelling.

– I have to admit that I like Bush a little more after this debate.

– I’ve heard Walker’s closing statement a million times, but it is good if you’re hearing it for the first time.

Overall, it was a fun debate. I suspect that the ratings will be very high for a first debate. I also suspect that events like this debate are going to drive a lot more interest in the Republican side during this cycle.

Finally, it’s such a blessing that the Republican slate of candidates is so strong. I can make a good argument for almost every candidate. It’s a slate of very strong, accomplished candidates.


2035, 06 August 2015


  1. Nashotah Conservative

    Hi Owen-

    My clear 3 winners tonight are Kasich, Huckabee, and Bush. If the one of these 3 doesn’t win the nomination, I’ll be surprised.

    I agree with you that Walker was largely ignored. I don’t think he belongs on the Stage. He might be a back bencher in the cabinet, but he just doesn’t have useful to say.

  2. Mark Maley

    I thought Rubio and Kasich were solid with every answer .
    Walker had a good line about the Chinese hackers knowing more about Hillary’s emails than we do but it seemed like he just remembered it as he ran out of time.
    Fiorina is the designated female attack dog . When she’s asked about her departure / firing from HP and her firing of thousands of people , her balloon bursts.
    The Guv’s bald spot looks as bad on TV as the Donald’s orange Do

    Paul and Chritie tried to throw the long ball and both came off desperate .
    Bush was meek and Cruz remains the most hated man in politics .

    It was entertaining and the Clinton campaign will happily use the Rubio sound bite from Rubio when he said that Hillary had more experience than all the folks on the stage put together

    If that’s as good as the other side has , measure the curtains for 16

  3. Steve Austin

    Interesting night. Still sort of amazed at the conservative twitter pundits who have now expended 123,493 tweets the last 24 hours bashing Trump and anyone who supports him. Seems almost like Trump derangement syndrome on the part of many of them, who I generally like on 99% of everything else.

    The bottom line is the GOP and conservatives should be thanking Trump for the simple reason he made that audience 10x larger than it would have been otherwise, providing a lot of good exposure for the other nine. But yes, his ceiling is limited if he can’t figure out how to be the happy warrior soon. I was surprised he kept the negative going all night, even though I had no problem with a number of his comments.

    Considering this was the national introduction for most of these guys, I think Rubio will get the most mileage out of last night, followed maybe by Kasich.

  4. Owen

    Agree on all counts.

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