I’m pretty sure that a team of doctors stood behind the airplane backdrop of last night’s Republican Debate waiting with straightjackets and muzzles to take the candidates back to the asylum they came from. Out of all 11 people on stage, only two did not deserve to be committed immediately following the debacle: John Kasich and Rand Paul. Neither stand a chance of receiving the party nomination, but although I do not agree with everything either of them stand for, hearing them talk was a breath of fresh air and clarity in an evening filled with insanity. As for the rest, my goodness, where do I begin? Though I do not foray into politics much on this blog I felt I needed to comment. I am fiercely independent when it comes to politics, but the 2016 election is so up in the air that I could lean either way. The majority on stage did nothing to distance themselves away from the stereotype that Republicans are ignorant and war-hungry. It was embarrassing to watch them blisteringly attack one another and foam at the mouth for war with Iran, North Korea, Syria, Russia, or all four. Below is my breakdown of the debate last night.
- I turned the debate on a few minutes late, shortly after seeing clips of Marco Rubio make a joke about having to bring bottled water because of California’s drought. I almost couldn’t believe it, even from someone as detached from reality as him. The state is having its worst drought in hundreds of years and this guy is poking fun at it? I’m truly surprised it has not gone viral. It should.
- The difference between the first debate on Fox News and this one on CNN? Fox advertised an 8pm start time, started at 9pm, and took commercial breaks every 20 minutes. CNN started on time and took one commercial break per hour. Both ended at roughly 11pm.
- This was the first time I had ever heard Carly Fiorina speak. I’d read a few quotes in some articles previously and was intrigued, but had no idea how utterly insane this woman is. First, let’s put aside that it looks like she rode a broom to the debate and has the complexion of an animatronic wax figure you would find at a haunted house attraction. How does someone like this have so much bent-up rage? First, she goes on about how we need to not be diplomatic with Russia, and have a show of force to intimidate them. She essentially told us that she would go to war with Russia if need be. Later on, she noted how we need to have the biggest military in the history of mankind and announced that she wants war with Iran and North Korea, and boots on the ground in Syria. As only a politician can do, she also linked Planned Parenthood with the failures of the nuclear deal with Iran. The psychopath capped off that little nugget with a quote you might hear in a science fiction film, “They’re harvesting our babies’ brains!”
- I don’t think there is another country in the world where someone named Ted Cruz who is descended from Mexican immigrants could come across as an angry, old, white southerner who hates Mexican immigrants. With a face like a blending of Lyndon Johnson and Yoda, his southern drawl pronounced Ayatollah Khamenei’s name as “cool-my-knee”. This happened in a discussion where he referenced a newspaper funny pages cartoon as an information source and wanted to declare war on Iran in the same breath. I surely hope that if he becomes president and the time comes for all-out nuclear war with Iran, he can manage to say the Ayatollah’s name correctly before he pushes the button. Get your straightjacket ready.
- Ah, poor Jeb Bush. Managed to go from funding women’s healthcare to war with North Korea in the same sentence. He and Trump smacking each other around was fun, but they sounded like an old married couple arguing. Trump was the first on stage to bring up going to war with North Korea. He and Jeb went back and forth between that and Planned Parenthood as if they are linked in some way.
- It took a half hour for Huckabee to get into the debate. Someone probably had to poke him with a stick to wake him up. I admit, I am impressed that he did not reference religion until the second hour. He was probably dying inside. Then he went on one of his moral crusades blaming all the problems in the world on the lack of people going to church. Aside from that, my favorite line from his shtick last night was when he said he opposed all forms of taxation then supported the Fair Tax in the same sentence. Do any of these people even think before they speak? He also managed to work Guantanamo Bay into a discussion on marriage.
- Hey Governor Christie, how dare you stand up on that stage preaching how much you hate taxes and how the system is rigged against middle class Americans when your state New Jersey has some of the highest property taxes in the country? Like nearly everyone else, everything out of his mouth was a contradiction. He wants to ban all forms of marijuana. When confronted by Rand Paul, he changes his statement to say that medical marijuana would be allowed. First he wanted it banned federally, then he wanted it up to the states. Back and forth like a seesaw, losing credibility with every second. And here’s something else: please don’t start every sentence with “In New Jersey I [insert accomplishment here]”, because half the people who live in this state hate your guts and can’t wait to move out!
- What sewer did Scott Walker crawl out of? He opposes raising the minimum wage but wants all Americans to be more well-educated. While I personally feel that we do not need the minimum wage raised as high as $15, how can we expect the people in question to work for $7.25 an hour and then afford the college education he wants you to have? Where are those tens of thousands of dollars going to come from? Just adding onto the debt? I guess you wouldn’t want to fix the situation by making college education (or some of it) free for everyone? No, that would be socialist and therefore evil.
- Ben Carson was pretty harmless last night. I just still can’t get over how this guy who is a doctor believes the earth is only 4,000 years old and man walked with the dinosaurs. Do we need someone like this running the country?
- I like John Kasich. He’s as religious as anyone up there, but he doesn’t let his views impact how he wants to treat people or run the country. All he says is that he hopes to use religion to make he and everyone else “work for something greater than themselves”. I can live with that. Then there’s Rand Paul, who just wants the government to stay out of people’s lives as much as possible. I think his father being too radical impacts a lot of how people view him, though he is more grounded than Ron. Only in this upside-down world we live in do the only people on stage who do not want to start World War III and actually come across as sane are the two who aren’t getting any media coverage or support.
After all of this, I wanted to end with something said by Jeb Bush at the conclusion of the debate. Each candidate was asked this amusing question: “Which woman would you want on the $10 bill?” Some said family members as a joke while others said Rosa Parks, Clara Barton, or Susan B. Anthony. When it came to Bush’s turn he selected Margaret Thatcher and added, “It’s probably illegal but that doesn’t really matter.” Part of me wants to start a campaign getting posters made with that quote next to his image and plaster them all over the country. It’s probably illegal, but that doesn’t really matter. The defining quote of the second Republican Debate.