No really. That’s all.
I know that in a debate you usually expect something like policies or positions, but hey, you got to hear Chris Christie talk about who Joe Biden is sleeping with, and Mike Pence talk about who he is sleeping with, and Nikki Haley argue about drapes. What more do you want?
We’re going to all wake up in the morning and pretend this didn’t happen. I think the candidates will, too.
Christie actually scores off the stupid “Survivor” thing by turning it into an extended opportunity to attack Trump.
Ramaswamy declares that the problem isn’t Trump. The problem is that Trump is not Trumpy enough.
And that’s it. Ramaswamy got the last word, and appropriately enough, it may have been “Trump.”
Fox decides to play candidate “Survivor” and asks the candidates to write the name of another candidate to “kick off the island.” And in a highlight of the night, not even these bozos will play the game.
So Ron DeSantis gets to talk again. Wait for how Fox will explain that DeSantis won tonight because he dominated the conversation … by being given far more airtime.
Fox is offended that Univision asked about “building bridges to Hispanics.” Says Fox pundit, “Hispanics don’t need bridges built to them.”
I think they should say that to their Univision partners when they’re back on the stage together.
I have no idea what either Scott or Haley said in the last five minutes. But the level of vitriol is appreciated.
I feel cheated by the commercial break, because Haley and Scott were still going at it when their mics were cut.
Haley and Scott really, really don’t like each other. These two are not faking.
Pence’s ability to be boring on any topic is a superpower.
DeSantis says that overturning Roe v. Wade had nothing to do with losing midterm elections. DeSantis gets in the “Democrats support abortion to the moment of birth” claim. If you had that on your bingo card, mark it now.
Burgum gets another question. I swear he’s running neck and neck with DeSantis in the opportunities to answer something. Burgum’s “worked in technology” comes down to having made an investment in accounting software, in case anyone was wondering.
Another question for DeSantis, who continues to get far more than his share. This time he’s invited to attack American colleges, which is a sweet spot for DeSantis to get in a dig at “gender studies.”
Fox invites Scott to mansplain his superiority to Haley. Which he is eager to do. Which is more coal and more oil. And again, no one seems to notice that unemployment is at record lows right now. Right now.
Haley attacks Scott, who immediately joins the biggest game of the night: Everyone talk over Nikki Haley. But wait! DeSantis jumps in to talk over Scott.
Ramaswamy then talks over DeSantis. And Burgum talks over Ramaswamy.
And does anyone remember what the question was? Of course not.
Ramaswamy says we need to put people back to work because we have too many people not working. Maybe he hasn’t noticed that the unemployment rate is at the lowest rate in 54 years. More likely he just didn’t have an answer to the question, which was about energy.
Pence promises to ravage every last old-growth forest, purple mountain, and field of grain until we’ve extracted every scrap of carbon-producing energy.
Nikki Haley goes after Ron DeSantis on blocking fracking, DeSantis claims he just did something in Texas. DeSantis and Haley spar over who is more willing to overrule voters to frack, frack, frack you.
Fox News believes that everyone was wrong about the Russia question. Because the right answer is pump more American oil and ignore Ukraine. Sorry, Ukraine.
Fox is also worried that there were altogether not enough attacks on Biden and insufficient anti-woke-ism. They want another debate where the subject is just how badly Biden is failing.
Also, Fox is upset about how those Univision moderators have been throwing “liberally framed” questions. Like, ones that are concerned with racism and protecting immigrants. That’s just harshing the vibe.
Pence is just the absolute master of being a downer. I can imagine him being the guy you bring home at the end of a wild party to just bring the tone all the way to the floor. Honestly, he could be saying things I agreed with 100% (he did not) and I would still be bored silly.
“The farther we get from September 11, the closer we are to September 10.” I’m not sure which Fox pundit said this, but it’s so profound I confess that I laughed through half of Scott’s answer.
Mexican cartels, though. I think we’re going to war with Mexico again.
If you thought we were going to get less fentanyl in the second part of this, boy, you were wrong. Everyone in America has now died from an overdose. I’m sure that’s how fentanyl works.
Burgum gets another question and demonstrates an entirely new conspiracy theory-based foreign policy. This is the most word-salad answer anyone has given so far. Fox is going to love it.
Christie gets asked about Ukraine and manages to be both anti-Putin, anti-Trump, and also wrong on about six points at the same time. It’s kind of amazing. But at least he recognizes that Putin has ambitions beyond Ukraine.
But Christie ends with what seems to be a claim that he’ll engage Russia directly. I think we’re in a war with Mexico, China, and Russia at this point. Someone needs to check the military budget.
DeSantis gets another question. I swear he’s been on the receiving end of about 50% of everything asked tonight.
This time it’s about Ukraine, and … of course he doesn’t have anything to say about it. Border! Fentanyl! Drug cartels!
Tim Scott actually gets in that 90% of funds sent to Ukraine are a loan. And that “our vital national interest is in degrading the Russian military.”
Ramaswamy can’t wait to get in there for Putin and explain how if we’re not nice to him he’ll go to China.
Haley starts shouting over Ramaswamy.
Pence starts shouting over Haley. It’s kind of a beautiful thing.
Ramaswamy insists that he’s the TikTok candidate. He’s young. He’s hip. He’s not a square like Mike Pence (okay, bad example; anyone of any generation sees Mike Pence as a square).
Nikki Haley says “every time I hear you I feel a little bit dumber” and explains how TikTok leads to making medicine in China not America also Hunter Biden, Hunter Biden, Hunter Biden! So there, dammit.
Ramaswamy says let’s talk about policy. Like why I’m cool and you’re not.
Christie is eager to explain how having your job taken over by a robot is a good thing for you. It’s an opportunity, people! Think of all the job retraining jobs we’ll create. Christie insists he will get all the regulations out of the way so Skynet can take over faster. Applause.
DeSantis has CCP tattooed on the inside of his eyelids. I think he may have now said it so much that it has passed the fentanyl count.
Pence once again doesn’t like the question he was asked, so he’s picking another one. He goes back to poking at Christie’s “sleeping with a member of the teacher’s union” bit. Even Pence thanks you’re weird, Chris. Mother does too.
Then Pence jumps heavy into the idea that kids could get sex reassignment surgery without parental permission. Except that’s a lie. It’s even two lies in one. But hey, anything to show he’s massively anti-trans.
Ramaswamy explains that being trans is mental illness and that he will ban medical transition.
Burgum explains why we’re not talking about how things are bad in North Dakota. Dear Doug, the reason isn’t because you’re so great. It’s because no one talks about North Dakota. Not even in North Dakota.
Also, Burgum signed more anti-trans bills that anyone else on stage. I’m surprised he didn’t jump on that.
I am still thinking about just how incredibly weird Christie’s “sleeping with a member of the teacher’s union” statement is. You’re weird, Chris.
DeSantis getting the chance to explain how Florida racism isn’t racist. Probably the first big cheer of the night.
Tim Scott steps in to explain that slavery is bad. Then gets to explain how the Civil Rights Movement is worse than slavery.
Chris Christie gets the please tell us that you’ll not do a damn thing to help minority students question. Please get out your bingo card again, and check for “Teachers Unions.”
Also Christie gets in that Biden is “sleeping with a member of the teachers union.” I’m wondering how many Fox viewers are trying to figure out what that means.
Astounding how the education questions being asked in 2023 sound exactly like that being asked in 2003, and 1983, and 1963, and … Why Jonny not read, Nikki Haley? Why he not read?
The solution, according to Haley is to let states make all the decisions. Also, woodshop.
So far, the Fox commentators think the the big winner of the first part of the debate is … Doug Burgum. And no, I can’t explain why. Also, they give Ron DeSantis big points for saying the name “Soros.”
But so far they are mostly just disappointed that no one is “spontaneous and fun” like Donald Trump.
North Dakota Gov. Doug Burgum, former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, former South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley, former Vice President Mike Pence, pharma bro Vivek Ramaswamy, and South Carolina Sen. Tim Scott continue to demonstrate their willingness to slice and dice each other while defending Donald Trump. Because that’s a great strategy.
Burgum. Isn’t that something that you put on pancakes if you’re out of syrup? Oh, sorry, the watery, slightly sour syrup substitute is sorghum. But didn’t Burgum have something to do with Mt. Rushmore? Nope. That KKK-loving racist bastard was Gutzon Borglum. Nope, Doug Burgum is best known for signing a record number anti-transgender bills, including ones allowing teachers to misgender students, ending transition care for minors, and restricting access to bathrooms and girls’ and women’s sports teams. Oh, and he also signed one of the nation’s most restrictive abortion bans. And now you know more about Burgum than you would ever get from this debate.
Speaking of which, time to go back in.