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D.W.
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Anyone else watch this last night? I'm not voting for any of them but I was curious what the take was of anyone likely to vote for the Republican nominee. There were some solid answers / deflections to some harsh “got ya” questions over the evening.

Semi related, what do you call a holy trinity once you add in Regan? Seems we need to coin a new word/phrase.

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D.W.
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I will say that if Trump decides to start being... more political, and plays off his more outlandish and incendiary comments as, "I was just using satire / humor to snap people out of their stupor." I think he could be an actual candidate.

I've been writing him off as a joke but if he accepted responsibility, repented for being so outlandish and explained it all away as a tactic and that persona is not "the real him"... I just don't know what would happen.

At that point I suppose the party would devote serious attention to his centrists or even liberal views on some issues.

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TomDavidson
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I think it's pretty obvious that:

1) The party is tolerating Trump as a diversion at this point. The person who gets the actual nom is going to pivot to the middle by harshly criticizing him once their position is secured.

2) Scott Walker's strategy is to not say anything stupid that might screw things up for him this early on, on the grounds that everyone else almost certainly will say something stupid.

3) The entire Republican Party is largely devoid of ideas, and that's sort of sad and frightening.

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Mynnion
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I watched most of it and cringed every time Trump opened his mouth. The sad thing is that his descriptions of the role of money in politics was dead on and scary.

I was a little concerned about the way Fox chose to pick and choose who got asked what questions.

I agree with Tom's comments on Walker. He seemed like almost a non entity.

Kasich impressed me with his willingness to step outside of the traditional GOP hot topics and the fact he could not be baited into attacking Trump.

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D.W.
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There was a large volume of "attack them where they're weak" targeted questions. It almost seemed like they wanted to set people up such that they damaged themselves. Maybe in an attempt to narrow the field and be able to host all the survivors at once?
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Seriati
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I watched it, I've heard very little from some of them so it was a good chance. Not surprisingly, Huckabee eliminated himself from my vote, he can have all the good ideas he wants he's just too extreme on the conservative positions for me.

I didn't know Christie was so pro-NSA, killed my interest in him almost completely, only part I though Rand Paul looked good in. Generally Rand is just too contrary on every point.

I can't remember what Rubio said, in his first few comments, but I marked him really down in my notes.

I was disappointed that Walker didn't put himself more out there, I wanted to actually evaluate him. Didn't feel like I got much from Jeb either. Didn't care at all about the Ohio governor.

Cruz had some good points, particularly on ISIS and in his wrap up.

I thought despite a slow start and what seemed like a good bit of nervousness, Carson came through really strong.

Trump is just well himself. The one factor he's got going for him is that he has a Democrat's sense of shame. Stick whatever you want to him, he just ignores it and keeps going. Hard to make a "scandal" stick when the candidate just ignores it. Very Clinton strategy on that front. His strongest point was when he was talking about his own political contributions and the access he got, and saying that isn't how it should work. Weakest point is when he makes it clear he's going to be a jerk in office.

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Pyrtolin
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quote:
I watched most of it and cringed every time Trump opened his mouth. The sad thing is that his descriptions of the role of money in politics was dead on and scary.
His bluntness in that area is what keeps me on the fence about whether he's actually intentionally acting as a spoiler and trying to troll the GOP by acting as an over-the-top caricature of it.

quote:
Kasich impressed me with his willingness to step outside of the traditional GOP hot topics and the fact he could not be baited into attacking Trump.
Indeed- of all the people up there, he's the one that, while I disagree with him on many points, seems to be the most open to reasonable conversation and working on a pragmatic rather than ideological basis.
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TomDavidson
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quote:
I was disappointed that Walker didn't put himself more out there, I wanted to actually evaluate him. Didn't feel like I got much from Jeb either.
These two are the presumptive front-runners. I guarantee you their complete avoidance of anything memorable in this debate was entirely intentional. It's way, way too early for anyone serious to be saying anything.
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Fenring
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The primary points made across all candidates appeared to consistently be:

1) As President I will tell the truth. Why is this a meme among them?

2) Hillary is the devil.

Very few other substantive points were made by anyone. Most candidates were content to brand themselves as either the ‘not-Obama’ or the ‘not-Hillary,’ and their only real goal was to make sure they were seen as a ‘real conservative.’

A few other points were mentioned a few times such as balance the budget, repeal Obamacare, support the military, and shrink government. These are such generic conservative points that each candidate could just have had them on a sign next to their head and not bothered saying anything about it.

I’m very sad to report that based on the result of this debate Jeb Bush came out looking good despite not saying that much, and is probably the best groomed and clear-spoken candidate. This is sad because as an actor (i.e. a sales product) he is superior to the other candidates, but as person his trustworthiness is zero. Most of the other candidates have no chance to ever beat Hillary, except perhaps for (dark horse) Rand Paul other than he needs a bit of coaching in charismatic public speaking and in explaining how he really is different from the others. Trump is entertaining but seems like a troll; maybe his presence is just about making the Republican candidates look more interesting than they and to increase attention for the debates, sort of like a generic Republican advertisement.

I’ll take a page from scifibum and posit a {tinfoilhat}: Trump is being paid by the Democrats to run in order to make the Republicans look bad.

[ August 07, 2015, 01:14 PM: Message edited by: Fenring ]

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kmbboots
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quote:
Originally posted by Seriati:
His strongest point was when he was talking about his own political contributions and the access he got, and saying that isn't how it should work.

I agree but the solution to people buying presidents is not to just buy the presidency!
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JoshuaD
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This election season terrifies me. Half of my facebook feed is people supporting Donald Trump and the other half supports Bernie Sanders.

I haven't seen anything from any candidate yet that has interested me.

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Greg Davidson
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It is a little disturbing when one of the leaders of the Clinton impeachment (Kasich) is the least extreme of the debaters.

ALso, when multiple candidates apparently don't understand that Iran and Syria are at war with ISIS.

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Fenring
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quote:
Originally posted by Greg Davidson:
ALso, when multiple candidates apparently don't understand that Iran and Syria are at war with ISIS.

Or they choose to pretend not to know this [Cool]
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LetterRip
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JoshuaD,

are you sure the Donald Trump folks aren't just putting you on? If not - indeed scary.

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Rafi
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quote:
Originally posted by JoshuaD:
This election season terrifies me. Half of my facebook feed is people supporting Donald Trump and the other half supports Bernie Sanders.

I'd love to see Sanders get the Dem nomination, I think he's a perfect representative of the Democratic Party.

Trump, well, he couldn't be any worse of a clown than the current clown in office and he'd be a lot more likely to benefit the U.S. rather than continue the horror show that's been the last 6 years.

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TomDavidson
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quote:
Trump, well, he couldn't be any worse of a clown than the current clown in office...
...AND he's a perfect representative of the Republican Party. [Wink]
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KidTokyo
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I prefer Sanders to Hillary in much the same way I prefer a pineapple to a hand grenade. Not a big fan of pineapple though.

The Republican debate was entertaining, but there were too many of them to learn much of anything. The serious folks are flying under the radar with practiced mediocrity until the clowns neutralize one another out of existence. When that happens, they can take it up a notch and go into platitude-dispenser mode. Fun stuff. Yay democracy.

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Fenring
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In all seriousness avoiding a hand grenade would be a big gain if that was legitimately possible. I don't even think a good leader needs to be someone who is superlative or exciting in any substantial way; the best leaders would probably be those who just did their job somewhat competently and didn't engage in gross misconduct.
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Pete at Home
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I liked Casich and Carly.

I thought that Ben Carson has the most presidential demeanor of all of them, but I have a hard time trusting a medical doctor who doesn't demur when the mindless bromide "life begins at conception" is touted as gospel. He gave a number of good half-answers, but all left me feeling quite unsatisfied. For example, his argument that PP should be defunded simply because we are currently borrowing money to fund it, and need to prioritize has SOME internal consistency, and his reply that the women's health stuff offered by PP is what Obamacare was supposed to cover has SOME merit, but both statements glaringly fail to address the birth control issue. It seems blitheringly obvious that subsidizing birth control for the poor SAVES the government money on a number of levels.

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Greg Davidson
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Ben Carson performed medical research using fetal tissue (or, as he might refer to this in other contexts, using parts of an unborn baby). Then makes up a nonsensical rationale for why it was okay when he did it but Planned Parenthood is still bad

quote:
You have to look at the intent," Carson told The Washington Post's Dave Weigel before he began a campaign swing through New Hampshire. "To willfully ignore evidence that you have for some ideological reason is wrong. If you’re killing babies and taking the tissue, that’s a very different thing than taking a dead specimen and keeping a record of it."

If you had to reread that once or twice, you're not alone. It's a very complex — and politically charged — issue.

Carson appears to be saying that the fetal tissue he used for research didn't come from fetuses aborted specifically for use in medical research. He also appears to accuse Planned Parenthood of doing just that. But that's a charge Planned Parenthood has flatly rejected and isn't proved by the videos.

link
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stilesbn
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Well there are two steps that Carson was not involved in.

1. Abort a baby.
2. Harvest the tissue.
3. Study the tissue.

It appears that Carson was involved only in step 3.

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NobleHunter
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To spare me from typing it out, please re-imagine what steps 1 and 2 would be for child porn and then consider the culpability of an individual who was only involved in Step 3: Watch the video.

More reasonably, if there's is something morally problematic about the creation of material, one cannot make the moral problem disappear by restricting one's involvement to the post-production steps.

[ August 14, 2015, 12:29 PM: Message edited by: NobleHunter ]

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DonaldD
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I'm sure there is a Godwin opportunity here somewhere...
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NobleHunter
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Actually, it's my understanding that the medical "experiments" of the 3rd Reich resulted in data that's been useful to actual medical practice. That's the moral problem I was thinking of. Though I think it is/was dealt with by a certain amount of willful ignorance.
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stilesbn
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Transitive morality seems a fuzzy area that is largely decided on a case by case basis with no consistent logic.

Take insurance for example. It's not immoral to buy at an insurance company that will then take your money to fund an abortion that you find immoral. But it is immoral to eat at a restaurant that donates to the anti-gay agenda.

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Greg Davidson
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Hey, how about the Al Gore rumors? I am skeptical...
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DonaldD
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Al Gore studied fetal tissue?
Al Gore sold fetal tissue?
Al Gore is Ben Carson's baby mama?

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stilesbn
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Al gore is an alien.
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Fenring
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Al Gore is an octopus.

http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/technology-science/science/octopus-genetic-code-strange-could-6241463

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Wayward Son
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Hey, what about the classic rumor? Al Gore said he invented the internet. [Smile]
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Mynnion
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Two down- I didn't watch the whole thing but I will be surprised if Trump doesn't take a hit. It will be interesting to see how things reshuffle. My predictions. At least for the next couple of weeks.

Carson-Trump both drop 5% or so.
Fiorino up 7%
Bush up 3%
Rubio up 1-2%
Walker up 1%

The rest I anticipate drops or no change.

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philnotfil
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I wonder if other candidates are going to start using Paul's line about Trump sounding like a middle school bully.
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AI Wessex
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I think Mynnion's guesses are more or less already being borne out in the overnight polling. Another name that seemed to fare well, as measured by Google statistics, is Christie. As ever, who knows what any of this means. In the end, they have to nominate someone who can be elected. I think that will rule out all of the non-elected choices, even if they are grabbing headlines and attention in the early going.
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Mynnion
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Or Walker's comment about not needing another apprentice in the White House.

Trump's attach on Bush's women's health funding was a total gift to Fiorino.

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Rafi
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quote:
Originally posted by philnotfil:
I wonder if other candidates are going to start using Paul's line about Trump sounding like a middle school bully.

Only if Trump is lucky. The election so far is all Trump, all the time. When it gets to vote counting time, what's th average person gonna do? They're gonna vote for the name they most recall. The more these guys keep Trump the focus of things, the better for Trump.
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AI Wessex
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Drumbeat of attention does seem to have a mesmerizing effect on voters these days. Listen to my voice: Benghazi, Planned Parenthood, Benghazi, Planned Parenthood...

For me, the most notable thing about the debate was the lack of any serious policy discussion and the overwhelming attention given to false issues fueled by false statements.

It's as if the GOP campaign is all about electing a Prime Minister of the flock, a cultural Pope. The irony of all the principles of social correctness and conformity they dole out is how the message directly opposes the so-called demand for individual freedom.

What will Trump do after he wins the election and moves into the Trump House? He has already said that he doesn't know, either. But, it will be HUGE.

[ September 18, 2015, 06:28 AM: Message edited by: AI Wessex ]

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Seriati
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I finally watched a good chunk of the debate last night, and what's interesting to me now is that I believe that Al's comments above reflect the intent of the CNN moderators. They went out of their way to avoid asking substantive questions in favor of questions that are better suited to a gossip show or Jerry Springer. The entire first half was little more than the moderators inviting the candidates to insult or criticize each other without any real regard to substance. In fact, when a candidate did start getting into substance, or legitimate criticisms of the Democrats, the moderators often interrupted them or claimed they didn't answer the question and tried to refocus them on garbage.

It just confirms to me the position I've held since the Candy Crawley absurdity, the Republican party should cut CNN out of any debates.

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AI Wessex
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These are not really debates, so it's hard to choose who to blame more. The candidates were eager enough to answer the personality questions asked, and the moderators didn't treat the event as a component of their mission to inform viewers. The GOP is hopelessly lost in a social battle for dominance, first within their ranks, but then when they pick a "winner", with the entire population. There's nothing stopping them from talking about important issues responsibly, except that they don't really want to.
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cherrypoptart
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The only position that matters in the long run is illegal immigration and deporting the illegals who are here.

Why?

Because of demographics, the Republicans don't stand a chance under amnesty and open borders. They will lose every other position on every other issue that they hold dear and differ with the Democrats on which will go in favor of the Democrats as they build their voter base and win more elections.

I'm sure all Democrats realize this as well which is why they are hell bent on amnesty and open borders and hate Trump's guts with a fuming vengeance.

Republicans and conservatives are waking up to this reality too which is why Trump, no matter what his other positions are, is the only viable candidate. If another candidate might deport as many illegals as possible, they might matter too. But if they won't then every other position they hold is irrelevant because in twenty years or less it will be trampled into dust as Democrats usurp power and abuse it and the Constitution and the law the way Obama has proven they will do without hesitation.

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cherrypoptart
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I agree with all who noticed CNN's obvious, immature, and unprofessional bias. It's going to be interesting to watch the Democrat debates, if there ever are any, and observe the differences such as focusing the Democrats on attacking the Republicans instead of each other. We'll see what happens. Maybe. If Hillary ever decides to debate.
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