Debate Season in Full Swing

MSNBC hosted the Republican debate tonight.  I watched the entire debate and have resisted watching or listening to any political pundits in an effort to give you my unvarnished thoughts.

Let me first begin by saying that I felt the moderators, Brian Williams and someone I have never seen before, engaged in some unsavory tactics.  Clearly there was not equal time given to each candidate.  The moderators did their level best to pit Mitt Romney against Rick Perry.  They marginalized Herman Cain and Rick Santorium while using Michele Bachmann for filler and Ron Paul for shock value.  In my honest opinion, Brian Williams lost all credibility when he asked Perry “how he sleeps at night being the number one state in executions of criminals.”  Not one other candidate was asked about capital punishment.  I thought it was gauche.  The notion of non-partisan, professional journalism was obviously left at the door.  I understood right then and there why MSNBC has the cute nick-names of PMS-NBC and MSLSD.  Act foolishly and people will treat you like fools.

That’s enough of my rant.  Let’s visit and see what we can salvage out of this debate.  Despite not given equal time nor equal questions, the clear winner was Herman Cain.  He articulated his plan for economic growth in this country.  He calls it the 999 plan.  In a nutshell, it replaces the current tax code with a nine percent tax on corporate profits, personal income, and national retail sales.  I like the concept and am looking forward to hearing more from him.

Next, I give the 2nd in this debate to Next Gingrich.  He took the moderators to task for pitting Romney and Perry against each other, which I was thrilled with, and then went on to discuss his platform.  He was very presidential and showed decisive leadership skills when discussing illegal immigration and trusting the “boots on the ground” with regard to Iraq & Afghanistan.

Now for the men of the hour- Rick Perry vs. Mitt Romney.  This was like watching a political cat fight.  The moderators did their best to keep it dramatic by saying such thoughtful things as “Mitt Romney once said..”  and “You are quoted as saying….”  But, they needn’t have worried.. in my honest opinion Perry didn’t come off well.  He seemed to struggle getting the words out and tripped over his tongue at least twice.  His worst blunder of the night was when he called Social Security a Ponzi scheme.  I can’t disagree with the point, but I don’t expect it to play well in Peoria.  As for Romney, he didn’t make any blunders, but he is staggering under the weight of his Massachusetts forced health care.  Romney is polished, well articulate and doesn’t show his emotions on his face.

As for the rest of the field, Michele Bachmann was steady and confident as she always is.  However, I don’t think she made any in-roads tonight which is unfortunate because she is steady, confident and politically honest.  Rick Santorum was uninspired and lacks the charisma to take his campaign to the next level.  John Huntsman, whose claim to fame is speaking fluent Mandarin and being the former ambassador to China, was ineffective and lacking real substance.  Lastly, Ron Paul.  The Congressman, is in a league of his very own.  He wants to legalize drugs to end the narco-terrorists coming into the country, close the Federal Reserve, and end all regulatory bodies of the Government.  I’ll just let all that speak for itself.

Here’s how I see the polls in the next coming days:

Romney:      Up
Perry:            Down
Bachmann:  Even
Cain:               Up
Santorum:   Down
Paul:               Even
Huntsman:   Even
Gingrich:      Even

Let me know what you saw tonight or didn’t see tonight.  Let’s keep the debate going.


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