Quantcast

CNN Florida Republican Debate Live Recap: Mitt Romney, Newt Gingrich, Ron Paul, Rick Santorum Battle It Out

Live updates in the comments below. Any comments with more than 5 Mics get posted in the story.

8:06pm: 87 people live blogging with us here. We want to hear from everyone.

Paul Leuck: Maybe I'm old-fashioned but I think these things are way over-produced. Strip away the flash-bang and deliver it straight.

8:16pm: Slow start but here go with with real discussion of immigration. Newt takes a softer tone.

8:22pm: Very solid back & fourth on immigration. Mitt pushes for forward thinking immigration policy. Given this discussion is happening in Florida, the GOP is talking moderately about being "pro-immigrant." 

8:35pm: First break, Romney has been absolutely dominant. Looks like he's been pulling all nighters in debate prep. Gingrich just can't hang. 

8:41pm: Newt criticizing Wolf Blitzer's questions on investments & taxes. Making him look stupid. Romney takes the opportunity to go in for the kill on Newt regarding his investments.

8:49pm: Wolf Blitzer is still asking random questions. He asks Ron, "Are you ready to release your medical records? [are you too old?]" Wolf then has to defend the stupid question,

Jesse MerkelSomeone please muzzle Wolf Blitzer.

8:56pm: Let's talk about going to the moon. What is wrong with Wolf Blitzer? Gives a few softballs to Mitt Romney and then diverts the conversation to meaningless discussion. 

9:02pmFinally, a question (from the audience, not Blitzer) on a real issue. What are you going to do about unemployment and healthcare? Ron Paul gives his standard line on governent. Newt doesn't have a good answer. Romney takes a reasonable position on healthcare (individuals buy insurance themselves, not through their employers) and then attacks Obama on SOTU for NOT doing anything.

Amy ZhangRon Paul on healthcare: government won't help you, and you'll do better! Voila!

9:10pm: Unexpected turn, Santorum goes on the hard attack. Accusing Newt & Mitt of being part of the Obama government run healthcare for all camp. Rick then attacks Mitt head to head. "To breathe in Massachussettes, you need to buy healthcare. ... Your mandate is the same as Barack Obama's mandate."

Jesse Merkel: Romney defending RomneyCare, Episode 348,028,028.5

9:24pm: Let's talk about the wives... Another great question by Wolf. Newt stumbles a bit and says all three wives.

Hanqing Chen: Sorry, I thought Newt was going to say "all three of my wives"...

9:32pm: How will you handle Cuba? Yawn..

9:38pm: Palestine vs. Israel question from a Palestinian GOP member. Interesting. Romney puts 100% of his weight behind Israel. Wolf asks a tougher question to Newt, asking him about his categorization of Palestine as an "invented people."

9:45pm: Religion: Ron Paul explains that it only effects how he treats people. Romney talks about the importance of judeo-christian values. Newt attacks the lieral elite. Santorum argues that God given rights are the key.

9:54pm: Who is the best candidate to beat Barack Obama? Ron Paul says he polls well against Obama because freedom and liberty are bipartisan values. Romney says Obama is leader the U.S. towards Europe, while he will change Washington and push entrepreneurship. Newt gives a good answer – but it's too little too late. Santorum says he's the last real conservative left. Closes with a strong argument as to why he can beat Obama in the swingstates.

Ben PooleBiggest loser in this debate - Wolf Blitzer and CNN


––––––––


On Thursday night, the final four GOP presidential candidates will take the stage in CNN’s Florida Republican debate. This will be the last debate among candidates before Tuesday’s Florida primary, a critical vote that could help cement Mitt Romney’s front-runner status or help a surging Newt Gingrich gain even more traction after his win in the South Carolina primary.

Expect this two-hour debate session – the second one of the week – to be another Romney-Gingrich slug fest. Romney has once-again gained a sizeable lead in Florida, and Gingrich will undoubtedly be on the attack against the former Massachusetts governor.

Gingrich took Romney to task in Monday night’s GOP debate, attacking everything from Romney’s comparatively low 14% tax rate, his tenure as governor, and his economic policies. At times in that debate Gingrich looked very much like the best candidate on the stage.

Since then, Romney has extended his lead to as much as 40% in Florida, compared to 32% for Gingrich.

Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas) comes in at 9% while Rick Santorum has 8%.

But debates can change everything. In South Carolina, a remarkable 90% of voters said that the GOP debates in that state helped determine their voting decision.

In a hypothetical national race, Romney and President Barack Obama are tied at 45% in the swing state of Florida, while a hypothetical Obama-Gingrich race see’s the president with a 50% to 39% lead.

This is the 19th Republican debate in this presidential campaign.

The CNN Florida debate airs tonight at 8 in Jacksonville.

PolicyMic will be live blogging the CNN debate starting at 7:30 p.m., and will also provide complete analysis of the debate immediately after the debate.

Photo Credit: David Markland

Like us on Facebook:
Join the Discussion
New Response

Be the first to comment

Top Responses ()
All Responses ()
Load More Responses Show All Responses

Loading Responses

CLOSE | X

Do you agree that our
generation needs a voice?