National Politics - 2016

#SCGOP Debate: Clash Of The “Republican” Titans

DONALD TRUMP, TED CRUZ FINALLY DROP THE GLOVES GOP frontrunner Donald Trump was on the ropes early during this week’s “First in the South” presidential debate in North Charleston, S.C.  The billionaire businessman – who enjoys a commanding lead in the early-voting Palmetto State – was outclassed early on the…


GOP frontrunner Donald Trump was on the ropes early during this week’s “First in the South” presidential debate in North Charleston, S.C.  The billionaire businessman – who enjoys a commanding lead in the early-voting Palmetto State – was outclassed early on the debate stage by U.S. Senator Ted Cruz, who masterfully deflected Trump’s criticisms regarding the former’s eligibility to appear on the 2016 ballot.

Cruz was born in Canada – to an American mother and a Cuban father.  Constitutional scholars have questioned whether he meets the “naturally-born” criteria established by the U.S. Constitution – and Trump brusquely demanded that Cruz seek a declaratory judgment affirming his eligibility.

“If you become the nominee, who the hell knows if you can even serve in the office?” Trump said.  “I’m not bringing a suit, I promise, but the Democrats are going to bring a lawsuit.”

Cruz shot back that Trump’s own lawyers had previously ruled in his favor on the matter – and that his rival was only raising the issue because Cruz’s poll numbers had gone up.

“Since September, the Constitution hasn’t changed, but the poll numbers have,” Cruz retorted.

Trump later acknowledged that Cruz wasn’t entirely wrong – saying “his numbers have gone up a little bit.”

The crowd of mostly establishment “Republicans” at North Charleston Coliseum roared their approval of Cruz – and booed Trump lustily.

It was a pivotal moment – one that could have conceivably changed the entire complexion of the race.  Why?  Because this debate marked the first time that Trump and Cruz – who have enjoyed an uneasy alliance at the top of the “Republican” primary field – openly sparred with each other.

And in the first round of fighting – Cruz clearly got the better of “The Donald.”

But Trump rallied …  with two ensuing exchanges turning what could have easily been his worst debate performance of the 2016 cycle into arguably his best showing.

The first exchange involved Trump’s reaction to recent comments by S.C. governor Nikki Haley – who criticized Trump as one of the “angry voices” voters should “resist” during her response to U.S. president Barack Obama‘s final State of the Union address.

Haley, who is very popular in her home state, was sitting in the audience – and received a cheer when Fox News’ moderator Neil Cavuto mentioned her name.

It seemed as though Trump was on the verge of eliciting another round of boos from the establishment crowd … but he successfully walked the tightrope.

“Our country is being run horribly. I will gladly accept the mantle of anger,” Trump responded. “I wasn’t offended, I am angry. She said the truth.”

Trump also referred to Haley as a “friend.”

Having regained his footing – and the support of the crowd – Trump went on the offensive when Cruz criticized him for embodying “New York values.”

“Not a lot of conservatives come out of Manhattan,” Cruz said.

Intended to make Trump look weak on social issues – which loom large in early-voting South Carolina – the broadside afforded Trump an opportunity to evoke memories of the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks on the United States.

“I saw something that no place on Earth could have handled more beautifully, more humanely than New York,” Trump said. “The people in New York fought and fought and fought.  We saw more death and even the smell of death and it was with us for months.”

As Trump spoke – in genuinely emotional, uncharacteristically soft tones – you could have heard a pin drop in the packed arena.  Seriously: If there was a heartstring left un-tugged, we didn’t see it.

“We rebuilt downtown Manhattan and everybody in the world watched and everybody in the world loved New York and loved New Yorkers,” Trump added.  “And I have to tell you, that was a very insulting statement that Ted made.”

The crowd roared its approval …

Trump and Cruz are dominating polling in early-voting South Carolina.  Trump is currently drawing 33 percent support from likely primary voters, according to aggregate polling data from Real Clear Politics, while Cruz is in second place with 22 percent support.


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jimlewisowb January 15, 2016 at 9:08 am

Nothing has changed, still playing the Trump Card

rockyverdadsuglylies January 15, 2016 at 9:14 am

An outstanding night for him and this country.

Bill Clinton January 15, 2016 at 1:32 pm

Good. Everything is going exactly as we planned.

erneba January 15, 2016 at 9:19 am

Trump, Cruz, and Rubio are the contenders, and soon, they will have to start attacking Hillary instead of each other.
Seeing as though Hillary is in the full-fledged self-destruct mode that made not be a complicated task.

jimlewisowb January 15, 2016 at 9:27 am

The only difference between Hillary and the Hindenburg is there are no flames coming out of her tail

vicupstate January 15, 2016 at 9:33 am

Rubio spent plenty of time last night attacking Hillary.

And you can forget the field as a whole attaching her in a big way until after Nevada, if then. It wouldn’t be hard to see it going long past that too, unless someone runs the table of IA,NH, and SC.

It is coming down to the wire, and the race could be decided in 45 days or less. If it isn’t it could go much longer than that. The stakes are very high at this point, so there will be plenty of fireworks for the next few weeks.

rockyverdadsuglylies January 15, 2016 at 9:38 am

It’s over.Trump/Cruz ticket.

Rocky Verdad January 15, 2016 at 10:20 am

Jan 10 polling Ioaw General Election – Hillary-ous over Trump by 8.

erneba January 15, 2016 at 10:53 am

The RCP average composite of Presidential Polls for January 13, 2016, has it at: Clinton 44.3…Trump 42.5, a statistical tie(within the margin of error) with Trump closing in.
Cherry picking the most favorable polls for Hillary????
You, like your hero, Hillary are in for a big shock.

Rocky Verdad January 15, 2016 at 10:22 am

Jan 7 PPP poll NH – General Election – Hillary-ous over Trump by 14.

rockyverdadsuglylies January 15, 2016 at 10:38 am

Trump will win 45 states.Landslide.If Hillary is indicted Sanders will win two states-Minnesota that is occupied by Obama’s radical Islamists and California as they are occupied by Obama’s illegals and the governor gave illegals Drivers Licenses so they can vote.

Crooner January 15, 2016 at 2:20 pm

Yeah, that’s why the establishment wants to keep him from being the nominee. They don’t want to win in a landslide. Sheesh.

Sic Semper Tyrannis January 15, 2016 at 2:39 pm

And he is actually that stupid.

erneba January 15, 2016 at 10:37 am

Sure, the party primaries have to play out.
The Republican primary has been crowded and it take time to get them down to one plausible candidate.

rockyverdadsuglylies January 15, 2016 at 9:40 am

Jeb had a great comment about her looming indictment.Lurch actually appeared human. :)

idcydm January 15, 2016 at 9:35 am

New York, New York…the media is all abuzz about Cruz’s values comment. Their values aren’t mine, I wouldn’t vote for Schumer or Clinton. Geraldo Rivera said everyone wants to move to New York and everyone wants to be from New York, to that I say bull shit. New York, Chicago, San Francisco, Los Angeles…to them the rest of America is just flyover.

Thomas January 15, 2016 at 12:48 pm

…and Potty Mouth is freaking out. Polls indicate she will lose NY to Trump.


Sic Semper Tyrannis January 15, 2016 at 2:33 pm

Nice spin, he has support of a county in the upstate, maybe 1.5 mill. That’s it. It is a nice pipe dream though.

sparklecity January 15, 2016 at 2:51 pm

I wouldn’t vote for that loud-mouthed draft avoiding obnoxious yankee for whore master let alone president………
I can’t stand his looks or mannerisms (let alone his damn mouth)
And if you admire “in your face” assholes, there’s been more than one “in your face” yankee asshole that got put in his place down here for trying that shit.
Trump ain’t nothing but a clone of Mussolini (another dipshit on an ego trip who fooled the Italians into believing he would make Italy the 2nd Roman Empire – just like Trump is claiming to Make America “great” again.) if you fall for that shit you get what you deserve just like the Italians did pre & post WWII.
Fuck it’s already great—I don’t see your yankee ass rowing a boat to Australia do I????
And if New York City is so great, how come you ain’t still there.????Go back to “your world” Greyhound & Delta are ready anytime your ass is yearning for the streets of “The Big Apple”
I’ve been to New York City several times and fuck,,,it’s New York City – part of this great country. Been to all the major cities in this great country and a lot of major cities all over the world. They’ve all got their good qualities (and bad ones as well)
I’ll tell you one fucking thing, New York City don’t hold a fucking candle to San Francisco I can tell you that.
****I’ll take San Francisco over New York City in a “New York minute”***

idcydm January 15, 2016 at 3:00 pm

For those that don’t know he was the 2008 Libertarian Party vice-presidential nominee. How well did that work out?

MashPotato January 16, 2016 at 2:50 am

Third parties are unwelcome in America. Doesn’t everyone know this by now?

idcydm January 16, 2016 at 7:42 am

A third party gave us Bill Clinton which in turn gave us Hillary…without Bill there would be no Hillary.

MashPotato January 16, 2016 at 8:35 am

Assuming that all votes belong to the duopoly is wrong and undemocratic. Not to mention catastrophic.

idcydm January 16, 2016 at 5:32 pm

Did I say there shouldn’t be third party candidates, don’t think so.

No importance January 15, 2016 at 1:33 pm

Yep. So what does that make SC? Not even a fly over. More of an after thought.

sparklecity January 15, 2016 at 10:11 am

Trump is a lying draft avoiding obnoxious Yankee and Cruze is a natural SOB.
That’s all you need to know about the “debate” (which I did not watch) between those two….

rockyverdadsuglylies January 15, 2016 at 10:43 am

Hillary is a draft dodging obnoxious Yankee lying criminal hillbilly and Sanders is a filthy,nasty communist that honeymooned in the USSR.

Should be a fun election

You dumb January 15, 2016 at 1:34 pm

How exactly did Hillary avoid the draft?

sparklecity January 15, 2016 at 2:17 pm

Excellent point…and she sure as hell ain’t no Arkansas hillbilly either…
Not that I’m voting for either Hillary of Sanders though…..

bobbymac January 15, 2016 at 10:19 am Reply
rockyverdadsuglylies January 15, 2016 at 10:33 am

You’re just mad that 7 Americans for 2 hours talked about love of country,values and jobs.

bobbymac January 15, 2016 at 10:51 am

I am not mad at all…watched every minute of it and thought there were some good ideas brought up. Christie’s idea of a reduced tax for the corporations that have money overseas for them to repatriate it to the USS and using that tax money for infrastructure repairs and upgrades is really good. Sometimes it is hard to determine at the time they speak whether what they are saying is true or not which makes it interesting to see the fact checking the next morning. Looks like some of them don’t mind bending the truth when it suits them.

Derp January 15, 2016 at 5:48 pm

So, corporations that already get huge tax breaks are going to ‘repatriate’ there overseas holdings because they will get an even bigger tax break? You actually believe that? God damn, you GOP voters are suckers to the end!

Bible Thumper January 15, 2016 at 12:10 pm

Of note, Bobby, the article never uses the word lie(s) except once where the root word was lay.

bobbymac January 15, 2016 at 2:51 pm

Point taken…lets go with falsehoods ;-)

TontoBubbaGoldstein January 15, 2016 at 8:04 pm

…lets go with falsehoods ;-)

Factually-challenged assertions.

ImpaledNazarene January 17, 2016 at 4:13 am

CNN’s ‘Reality Check Team’ are as reliable as articles from ‘The Onion.’

Stupid liberal!

Philip Branton January 15, 2016 at 12:06 pm

Ya got to hand it to Trump how he handled the New York issue tact. To also hear that he is giving free tickets to Iowans to go see the 13 hours about Benghazi is another great political move. Can hardly wait….Donald knows how to listen to whispers and humble voices that have suggested such an idea to be used politically. Wonder if he will do the same thing in Egypt to educate Egyptian citizens (..and ISIS wanna-bes) about the Egyptian and Israel oil and gas deals instead of Egyptians harnessing all of their SOLAR energy…!! Can you imagine the Tarrir Square applause after The Donald gets a movie shown in Egypt explaining how the citizens can use their OWN Solar energy instead of Israel’s GAS…!? Talk about a Berlin Wall moment….

LouieBuoy January 15, 2016 at 4:14 pm

Yeah, Teflon Don stuck it to them yet again. It’s like the rest of the lot are all amateurs.

GovSugarDumplin January 17, 2016 at 11:10 am

Haley is popular? Since when?


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