The CNN/Telemundo debate was an all-out wrestling event that at times saw moderator Wolf Blitzer lose complete control of the situation. Last week’s Michigan debate saw frontrunner Donald Trump take it from a cage match to a literal dick measuring contest.
How did we get to this point? Moderator Bret Baier asked candidate Marco Rubio about his statement that he doesn’t do “personal attacks.” Prior to that night’s debate, Rubio made a comment during a campaign stop suggesting Trump had small hands.
“Look at those hands. Are they small hands? And if he referred to my hands, if they are small, something else must be small. I guarantee you there is no problem. I guarantee,” Trump bragged about his member to the debate audience.
Donald Trump’s dick has now been discussed on a GOP debate stage more than the Black Lives Matter movement.
It’s tough to understand if these chuckleheads are running for the President of the United States or of their local Pokémon fan club.
If you were expecting yet another barrage of name-calling and yelling from the candidates, the night did not disappoint.
“The audience can’t understand when you’re talking over each other,” moderator Megyn Kelly reprimanded Trump and Rubio less than twelve minutes into the debate.
“I have never tried to go and get into these scrums that we’re seeing here on the stage. And, people say everywhere I go, “You seem to be the adult on the stage.” Ohio Governor John Kasich told the audience. Within minutes of stating this, Kasich’s statement was validated… again.
As the Florida Senator pressed Trump on his lack of details concerning policy, the two candidates would exchange nicknames that wouldn’t have made it on an episode of “The Little Rascals.”
Rubio: “All right, well, let’s hear it big Donald.”
Trump: ”Don’t worry about it, little Marco.”
I imagine the off-camera Ted Cruz was eating a box of Crayolas, quietly chuckling with a mouthful of “forest green” while this exchange took place.
At this point in the evening, Chris Wallace’s question on tax policy felt less like a moderation of a debate and more like a teacher re-entering an elementary school classroom.
“Gentlemen. You’ve got to do better than this,” Wallace scolded the candidates.
Addressing Trump, Wallace asked the billionaire how he makes up for the $10 trillion his tax cut policy would add to the national debt.
If this sounds familiar, it’s because Trump was asked the same question during the CNN/Telemundo debate last week.
Trump responded at the previous debate he would cut the Department of Education and the EPA, which moderator Wolf Blitzer explained only accounted for $76 billion.
Trump would embarrassingly explain to Blitzer the difference would be made up in “Waste, fraud and abuse.”
A week’s time had passed between the two debates. Surely, Trump and his team had a far more accountable answer prepared this time. Right?
“Department of Education. We’re cutting Common Core. We’re getting rid of Common Core. We’re bringing education locally. Department of Environmental Protection. We are going to get rid of it in almost every form.”
Not only is it the exact same answer, but he brags about fully eliminating the EPA in a state where a community recently suffered from a mass water contamination.
Wallace anticipated Trump being this stupid and even had a graph prepared. Although Wallace reaches a slightly higher number ($85 billion) than Blitzer, Trump still isn’t even close to covering the $10 trillion.
Trump retreats to his “waste” answer, explaining hundreds of billions of dollars in waste originate from improper bidding by pharmaceutical companies. Once bidding is mandated, Trump claims this will largely counter the debt.
With another graph, Chris Wallace did a real-time fact check:
“You say Medicare could save $300 billion a year negotiating lower drug prices. But Medicare total only spends $78 billion a year on drugs. Sir, that’s the facts.”
Sick burn by Wallace.
And it just wouldn’t be a GOP debate without Ted Cruz threatening the Affordable Care Act:
“As president, I will repeal Obamacare, the biggest job killer in America.”
Cruz repeats this line like a paint chip-eating parrot.
Although Cruz doesn’t tell the audience where he purchased the box of Cracker Jack from which he pulled this sound byte, it’s likely the continued misrepresentation of a 2014 Congressional Budget Office report.
The report showed that millions of Americans would have the financial security to voluntarily work fewer hours or retire early now that their healthcare plan was no longer directly tied to their job. Conservative media essentially reported it as mass firings.
Not only did the unemployment rate last month remain at just 4.9%, we are now in the longest streak on record of continuous private sector job gains (72 months).
As Kasich remained the friendly neighbor (who still drastically cuts women’s healthcare), Cruz and Rubio attacked Trump throughout the night in an attempt to slow down the frontrunner’s steamrolling trek to the nomination.
The tactic resulted in a bad improv act you would see at your local bar’s open mic night.
Ronald Reagan envisioned former General and Secretary of State Colin Powell as the future of the party, I could only imagine his reaction to the star of NBC’s “The Apprentice” leading in the polls.
The Grand Old Party is dying… figuratively and literally.
Trump has epitomized the hate, xenophobia and religious demagoguery displayed by the Tea Party. Like a parasite, the Tea Party fed off of the GOP’s gastrointestinal tract (of which the GOP was more than happy to supply) for the last seven years. Now, it’s eating the body.
Rubio and Cruz’s desperate attacks against Trump are like watching the establishment itself fight off death. However, there is seemingly no silver bullet to stop Trump’s ascent.
Among last Thursday’s dick and yoga comments, Donald Trump was cheered for his support of torture and killing the families of terrorists. It’s as if Kevin Smith wrote a sequel to Eli Roth’s “Hostel.”
The last debate lowered the bar practically to the floor. This week’s debate in Miami, Florida may begin with a limbo dance.