The Campaign Spot

Election-driven news and views . . . by Jim Geraghty.

Republican Debate Two, Part Three


I vote for commercial breaks in all future debates.

Wallace asks Gilmore about “Rudy McRomney” comment. Gilmore says, “I thought it was a good line. Abortion issue. One candidate who says he is against – who is in favor of federal financing of abortions. But also says he supports Hyde amendment.” Goes after Huckabee on tax hikes. Goes after Romney on health care for mandatory requirements.

Wallace mentions endorsement of Cuomo.

Giuliani: Rudy McRomney wouldn’t make a bad ticket. I like the order. [gets a good laugh] Something bigger at stake. Leading Democratic candidate says free market is most disastrous thing for America. Going after Hillary. Such a stark difference there, this election is going to make a big difference.

Wallace: I’m going to give you another thirty seconds to answer my question. Ow. Chris Wallace is feeling a bit pugnacious tonight.

Rudy cites George Will column praising most successful conservative leader in America. Abortions went down in New York City.

McCain: First issues you mentioned have to deal with bipartisanship, reaching across the aisle. Congressional approval rating is down to blood relatives and paid staffers. (Another good line!) Says most important issue is

Huckabee: It’s a form of flattery to get criticized; I wish my name would get in the moniker Gilmore put out there, I could use the bump. 80 percent of my state voted for the tax hike. I don’t apologize for it, or for building roads. Or education system also improved. Also got 94 tax decreases.

Romney: Always been someone who opposes discrimination. Also believe it is critical that marriage be between one man and one woman. I led a tough state. You’ve heard of blue states, if you’ve ever bought a suit and can’t tell if it’s blue or black, that’s how blue Massaschuetts is. Supports english immersion.

Missed Brownback’s answer, because I was editing the previous comments…

Goler asks about stem cells.

Thompson mentions development at UMadison Wisconsin. Seems to think it’s important to mention Wisconsin in every answer. Then goes on to give a detailed answer. Too detailed to transcribe.

Giuliani: Cannot imagine people choosing or supporting slavery. There are millions of Americans who choose differently. Don’t want government coersion. Keep government out of people’s lives, and you can respect somebody else’s views on this. Work with Democrats to reduce abortion as much as you can, and look to promote adoption.

Huckabee: I have great respect for the mayor. He’s been honest about his position. But I’m pro-life. I believe life begins at conception. We value life. Jihadists celebrate death, they have a culture of death. We have a culture of life.

Two good answers from two very different perspectives.

Goler hits Brownback a tough question about no abortions for rape victims. Brownback says if life in the womb is a person, it is deserving of respect. This is a life we’re talking about. An innocent.

Then Goler hits Romney with tough question on someone dying from getting an illegal abortion after a future Supreme Court banned it. Heart would be rent by the situation you described. Romney tells tale of embryo farming during cloning debate. Decided Roe v. Wade has cheapened value of human life.

Wallace asks Tancredo if he thinks McCain and others are weak on this issue. Says, “obviously.” I see so many conversions around this room on a lot of things.

Is it just me or did the screen just get red?

Tancredo mocks conversions on the road to Damascus, as opposed to the road to Des Moines.

McCain: I have never supported amnesty. We are close to agreement. Points out that the Fort Dix folks didn’t come across the border, they had expired visas.

Wallace asks if he’s backed away from Kennedy bill from last year. McCain says he’s been heavily engaged on the issue. I come from Arizona, where half the illegal crossings come from. I intend to lead, I don’t intend to follow. I don’t intend to block things.

Romney says no special pathway for illegal aliens to become permanent resident. Have to say to those here illegally to get in line like everyone else. Brings up McCain-Kennedy, says it would do for immigration what McCain Feingold did for campaign finance. Gets applause.

McCain: I’ve took a consistent position on campaign finance reform. I haven’t changed my position based on even numbered years, or based on the position I’m running for. Zing! Right back atcha, Romney! That, too, gets applause.

Rudy: I would like to thank Congressman Tancredo for calling me soft.  That’s the first time since I was US Attorney that anybody called me soft. Talks about need for security, and tamper-proof ID card.

Duncan Hunter mentions that he built the border fence by San Diego.

Ron Paul approvingly cites Robert Taft not wanting to join NATO.

Tags: Barack Obama , Bill Richardson , Chris Dodd , Fred Thompson , Hillary Clinton , Horserace , Joe Biden , John Edwards , John McCain , Mike Huckabee , Mitt Romney , Newt Gingrich , Rudy Giuliani , Sarah Palin , Something Lighter , Tommy Thompson


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