It’s debate night. All eyes will be on Donald Trump, the undisputed frontrunner who is like the star athlete who draws recruiters and gets games televised on national television. But Trump’s presence provides an opportunity for the other nine candidates to shine before what may be a record number of television viewers. Breitbart News will be providing live updates and analysis throughout the night below.
Donald Trump: “Our country is in serious trouble. We don’t win anymore. We don’t beat China in trade. We don’t beat Japan… We can’t beat Mexico at the border or at trade,” Trump says.
Trump says the military needs to be strengthen, vets need to be taken care of, Obamacare needs to be ended, and the country needs to be made great again. Trump says he will do that.
Jeb Bush: Jeb brings up immigration reform in his closing argument. He commits grow the economy and restore America’s leadership in the world so everybody has a chance to rise up.
Scott Walker: He says he’s a guy with a wife and two kids with a harley. He says an article said he was “aggressively normal.” He touts his successes in Wisconsin, taking on unions, winning recall elections. He said it was not too late for Wisconsin and it’s not too late for America.
Mike Huckabee indirectly Slams trump by saying this election cycle has been a whole about a person who is high in the polls but doesn’t have a clue about how to govern, a person who has been filled with scandals and could not lead. He says, of course, he is talking about Hillary Clinton. Huckabee says America is in trouble and not beyond repair.
Ben Carson: He says he is the only one to have separated siamese twins and the only one who has operated on babies while they were in their mother’s womb. He says he is the only one who has taken out half of a brain though he says if you go to Washington you would think someone had beat him to it. He says he hopes he is not the only one who is willing to pick up the baton of freedom.
Ted Cruz: Cruz will rescind every illegal and unconstitutional executive action taken by Barack Obama. He will cancel the Iran Deal, move the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem. His father fled Cuba and he will fight to defend liberty because he knows what it’s like to lose it.
Marco Rubio: He says his parents came to America because it was the only place where people like them could have a chance… He mentions that his father was a bartender and the the journey from the back of the bar to this debate stage is the essence of the American dream and what makes our country different. He says he is running for president because he wants that to still be possible for people trying to do that now. Rubio wants to not only save the American Dream but to expand it in a new American Century.
Rand Paul: He says he is a “different type of Republican.” He said he stood ten hours on the Senate floor to “defend your right to be left alone.” He notes he is the only one who leads Hillary Clinton in five states that were won by President Obama.
Chris Christie: He talks about middle-class roots and speaks about his father who worked at the Breyer’s ice cream plant in New Jersey. He says he is a conservative pro-life governor in a state that is tough to be both.
Kasich: Touts having served on Armed Services Committee and serving on the Budget Committee last time the country balanced its budget.
10: 55: Carson on race relations: He said the bully pulpit should be used to heal race relations instead of being used to drive wedges between people whenever there is a conflict between two people of different races.
Note: Carson shines when he is given an opportunity to actually talk and reveal his character and values. Though he did not get much airtime in the first debate, there is reason to be bullish.
10: 54: Rubio says God has blessed Republicans with great candidates while Democrats can’t find one. He says God has blessed this country and with the young men and women who have been willing to die for the country. Rubio vows to have a VA that cares more about the veterans than the bureaucrats who work at the VA.
10: 53: Walker says he is an imperfect man and it is only by the blood of Jesus Christ that he has been redeemed from his sins. He says he will follow God’s will and hopes that people have seen that he has not responded in kind when he was taking on vicious union protestors.
10: 50: Cruz says he is blessed to receive a word from God every day. He reads the Scriptures every day and notes that God speaks through the Bible. He notes that he is the son of a pastor and tells the story about how his alcoholic father left him and his mother and was turned around after he gave his heart to Jesus and came back to his family.
Cruz talks about “campaign conservatives” and talks up a “proven conservative.” He notes that he has fought for religious liberty, has stood against Planned Parenthood, and has defended life his entire career and will be proud to do so as president.
10: 48 pm: Christie says Israel is a priority and needs to be funded.
10: 47: Rand stands by budget proposal that would cut aid to Israel, but he says the country first needs to start by cutting off funding to countries that hate us and burn our flag. He said we should not borrow money from China to give to foreign nations but we should start by eliminating aid to America’s enemies. Paul says his position on aid to Israel has not changed.
10: 45: Huckabee on transgenders in the military: He says the military is not a social experiment. The purpose of the military is to “kill and break things” and “protect America” and “not to transform the culture.”
10: 43: Scott Walker: “Russian/Chinese Governments Know More About Hillary’s Email Server than do the members of the United States Congress, and that has put our national security at risk.”
Walker says that Putin believes in the adage about probing with bayonets where “you when you find mush, you push, when you find steel, you stop.” He says there has been a lot of “mush” under Clinton/Obama. He calls for a national security that “puts steel in front of our enemies.” He said he would send weapons to Ukraine, work with NATO to put forces on eastern border of Poland, and re-institute missile defense system over the region.
10: 41 pm: Carson notes the the size of the country’s Navy/Air Force is diminishing while the country’s enemies are increasing their military capabilities. He blasts the Obama administration for turning our back on Israel. Carson says the military needs to be strengthen first because “if you don’t get the military right, nothing else is going to work.”
10: 39 pm: Cruz on Russia/China: He blasts Obama/Hillary for leading from behind. Cruz mentions that Russia engaged in cyber espionage against the Joint Chiefs of Staff on the day Iranian General Suleimani, who is directly responsible for the murder of over 500 American servicemen in Iraq, flew back to Iran from Russia. Cruz mentions that America needs a president who will project strength and stand up to our enemies. He notes the Iran Deal lifts sanctions on Suleimani and says Iran released hostages in 1981 the day Reagan was sworn into office.
10: 37 pm: Trump says “if Iran was a stock, you folks should start buying” it because it would quadruple. He says what’s happening in Iran “is a disgrace” and will “lead to destruction in large parts of the world.”
10: 36 pm: Trump on Obama Foreign Policy: “We have a president who doesn’t have a clue.” He said he would say Obama is incompetent but will not do so because it’s not nice.
“We have people in Washington that don’t know what they’re doing,” he says, referring to the Bergdahl exchange.
10: 33 pm: Walker on Black Lives Matter Movement:
Walker said the most important thing we can do when it comes to policing is making sure law enforcement professionals have the proper training when it comes to the use of force. He said law enforcement officers should be supported and the for the very few that are not doing their jobs, there needs to be consequences to show that everyone is treated equally in America.
10: 31: Rand on religious liberty: “I don’t want my marriage or my guns registered in Washington,” Paul said.
Referring to the Houston mayor who tried to get the sermons of ministers, Paul said that “when the government tries to invade the church to enforce its own opinions on marriage, that’s when it’s time to resist.”
10: 29: Trump Says Jeb a “Gentleman” for Denying that he called him various epithets. Trump slams Jeb for criticizing his tone.
10: 28: Jeb Bush Denies Calling Trump “A-Hole,” “Clown.”
10: 26: Kelly grills Trump about liberal positions on gun control and partial-birth abortion. She asks, “when did you become a Republican?”
Trump says he has evolved on many issues like Ronald Reagan did.
10: 24 pm: Rubio touts pro-life credentials, says future generations will call “us barbarians” for “murdering millions of babies who we never gave a chance to live.”
10: 23 pm: Kelly asks Bush why he sat on the board of a Bloomberg charity that donated tens of millions to Planned Parenthood. Bush claims he did not know that the charity donated millions to Planned Parenthood because he joined the board because of its education programs.
Jeb said the foundation approved a budget but not “item by item.” He then spoke about his pro-life records as Florida Governor, including defunding Planned Parenthood.
10: 19 pm: Huckabee: President Obama Is “Trust But Vilify”
“Ronald Reagan said ‘trust but verify,'” Huckabee said. “President Obama is ‘trust but vilify. He trusts our enemies and vilifies everyone who disagrees with him.”
Huckabee said the Iran Deal, in which Iran gets everything they want while America did not even get four hostages back, just makes the world more dangerous because Iran has said “we will wipe Israel off the face of the map and we will bring death to America.”
“When someone points a gun at your head and loads it, by God you ought to take them seriously,” Huckabee said.
10: 19: Rand Wouldn’t Tear Up Iran Deal on Day One:
Paul says he opposes the Iran Deal, will vote against it. He said Obama did not negotiate from a position of strength.
“I don’t immediately discount negotiations,” he said. “I’m a Reagan conservative. Reagan did negotiate with the Soviets. But you have to negotiate from a position of strength.”
Paul said Obama gave away too much, too early. Paul said he would have never released the sanctions until before there was consistent evidence of compliance.
10: 17 pm: Scott Walker says he would terminate the deal on Day one, reinstate the sanctions and ask Congress to put even more crippling sanctions in place.
10: 15 pm: Fox News gives Carly Fiorina some primetime publicity by airing her comments about the Iran Deal from the Happy Hour debate. They also play a clip where Rick Perry says he rather have Fiorina negotiating with Iran rather than John Kerry.
10: 10 pm: Trump: “This country owes 19 trillion dollars, and they need someone like me to straighten out this mess.”
Wallace grills Trump for saying he “used the laws of this country” to his advantage when his companies went bankrupt. He asks Trump why people should trust him to run the country’s economy when lenders allegedly lost billions with some of his companies.
“I have never gone bankrupt,” Trump said. Wallace says that some of his companies have gone bankrupt.
Trump said he has taken advantage of the laws of this country on just four occasions.
Wallace presses Trump on “Trump Entertainment Resorts.” He said lenders lost billions and many lost jobs.
Trump says the lenders “aren’t babies” and are “killers.”
Trump says “Chris [Christie] can tell you” about companies going bankrupt in Atlantic City.
“This country owes 19 trillion dollars, and they need someone like me to straighten out this mess,” Trump says.
10: 01 pm: Carson slams progressive movement. He says if he wanted to destroy the country, he would ramp up the debt and drive wedges between people.
9: 53: Jeb/Rubio Spar over Common Core. Jeb defends Common Core. Rubio says the federal government will turn Common Core into a mandate to “force it down the peoples of our states.” Jeb says the states ought to create education standards and is okay with states opting out of Common Core.
9: 51 pm: Huckabee/Carson on Taxes:
Huckabee argues for fair tax. Carson is in favor of a proportional flat tax.
9:49 pm: Trump said Hillary Came to His Wedding Because He Donated to her. Trump said he told Hillary, “‘Be at my wedding,’ and she came to my wedding. You know why? She had no choice because I gave.”
9: 48 pm: Rubio Attacks Trump for Supporting Charlie Crist
9: 47 pm: Trump Answers questions about liberal positions, donations: He says a single-payer system could have worked in another era and he says that the country needs to take care of people who cannot take care of themselves and he would have another system to deal with that. Paul calls Trump out for still defending a single-payer system.
9: 45 pm: Ben Carson finally gets another question and responds he was wondering if he would ever get to speak again.
9: 43 pm: Megyn Kelly asks Jeb Bush again about whether America should have invaded Iraq “knowing what we know now.” Jeb finally has an answer prepared, saying, “knowing what we know now, with faulty intelligence, it was a mistake. I would not have gone in. ”
Rand to Christie: “I know you gave him a big hug, and if you want to give him a big hug again, go right ahead.”
Rand/Christie Spar over surveillance programs: In a heated exchange, Christie, invoking 9/11, he “will make no apologies, ever, for protecting the lives and the safety of the American people. We have to give more tools to our folks to be able to do that, not fewer, and then trust those people and oversee them to do it the right way. As president, that is exactly what I’ll do.” Rand said he was in favor of getting more records from terrorists and less from innocent Americans.
Rand accused Christie of “fundamentally” misunderstanding the Bill of Rights after Christie said, “when you’re sitting in a subcommittee, just blowing hot air about this, you can say things like that.”
“I don’t trust President Obama with our records. I know you gave him a big hug, and if you want to give him a big hug again, go right ahead,” Paul said.
Christie responded that the “hugs that I remember are the hugs that I gave to the families who lost their people on September 11th.”
9:34: Donald Trump on immigration remarks: “If it weren’t for me, you wouldn’t even be taking about illegal immigration, Chris. This was not a subject on anybody’s mind until I brought it up.”
Trump slams “dishonest” reporters who did not cover his statement accurately.
Trump says he the country needs a wall but he wouldn’t mind having a door in the wall so people can come in legally.
When asked what proof he has about Mexico sending illegal immigrants to the country, Trump says Border Patrol agents have told him that Mexico “sends the bad ones over” because “they don’t want to take care of them.” He says he doesn’t blame Mexico because the “stupid politicians” in the United States do nothing about illegal immigration.
“And that’s what’s happening whether you like it or not,” Trump tells Wallace.
Jeb Bush Stands By Act of Love Comments
When asked if he still stands by that statement and his support for
“I do,” Bush said. “I believe that the great majority of people coming here illegally have no other option, they want to provide for their family.”
9:30 pm: Jeb Stands buy “act of love” comments and path to legalization for illegal immigrant.
When asked if he still stands by that statement and his support for an earned path to legalization, Bush replied, “I do.”
“I believe that the great majority of people coming here illegally have no other option, they want to provide for their family,” he said.
Bush attacks sanctuary cities and claims that earned legal status is “not amnesty.”
9:27 pm: Kasich Defends Medicaid Expansion:
Kelly asks Kasich why conservatives should believe that he will not use his “St. Peter’s” rationale to expand every government programs. Kasich says he expanded Medicaid to help the working poor and mentally ill. He says Medicaid is growing at one of the lowest rates. It seemed like Kelly gave Kasich an opportunity to defend his Medicaid expansion in a favorable light.
9:24 pm: Rand Paul gets a question about having blamed the rise of ISIS on GOP hawks. Baier notes that Paul said that everything the neocons/hawks have said about foreign policy has been wrong for the last twenty years. Paul said ISIS rides around in a billion dollars worth of U.S. humvees and says “we shouldn’t fund our enemies.” He said “we didn’t create ISIS, ISIS created themselves and we will stop them and one of the ways we stop them is by not funding them and not arming them.”
9:22 pm: Ignoring Personhood Violation of Unborn’s 5th/14th Amendment Rights.
Huckabee shows why he has a strong appeal to Evangelical voters.
He says that “now that we clearly know that that baby inside the mother’s womb is a person at the moment of conception,” the next president ought to invoke the 5th and 14th Amendments.
Huckabee says that ignoring the personhood of the individual is a “violation of that unborn child’s 5th and 14th Amendment Rights for due process and equal protection under the law.” He calls on changing the policy to be “pro-life instead” of ripping off “their body parts and selling them like they are parts to a Buick.”
9:18 pm: Scott Walker: Hillary Clinton ‘Radical’ for Supporting Planned Parenthood
Scott Walker defends his pro-life record. He says Hillary Clinton has a “radical record” of supporting Planned Parenthood.
9:15 pm: Ted Cruz says “I ain’t your guy” to voters who want candidates who go to Washington to “get along to get along” in response to a Chris Wallace question about whether he is too “divisive” to win a general election.
“I will always tell the truth and do what I say I will do,” Cruz says to thundering applause.
9:13 pm: Donald Trump: ‘I Don’t Have Time for Political Correctness’
When Megyn Kelly accuses of calling women “fat pigs” and other insults, Trump responds “it was only Rosie O’Donnell.” She asks Trump how she will answer Hillary Clinton’s charge that he is waging a war on women? Trump says a “big problem this country has is being politically correct.”
“I think the big problem this country has is being politically correct,” he said. “I’ve been challenged by so many people and I don’t, frankly, have time for total political correctness. And to be honest with you, this country doesn’t have time, either.”
Trump also says he likes to joke around and “what I say is what I say.”
He tells Kelly, “if you don’t like it, I’m sorry.”
The crowd seems to take Trump’s side. Lots of cheers for Trump–and his bluntness.
9:08 pm: Bush claims he understands why Americans may be sick of political dynasties. He says “maybe the bar is higher for him.” He goes into talking points about being his own man, governing as a conservative, and being “Veto Corleone.”
9:07 pm: Rubio: “This election cannot be a resume competition.”
Chris Wallace gives Rubio a chance to attack and compare himself to Jeb Bush. Rubio says “this election cannot be a resume competition” because if it were one, Hillary Clinton would win. Rubio says Hillary Clinton will not be able to lecture him on living paycheck to paycheck because “I was raised paycheck to paycheck.”
9:05 pm: Trump: ‘I Will Not Make Pledge’ Not to Mount Independent Run
Donald Trump refuses to raise his hand to pledge not to mount an independent candidacy if he does not win the nomination. “I will not make the pledge at this time,” he said. He says he wants to win as a Republican but will have to “respect the nominee.” Rand Paul, trying to perhaps revive his campaign, gets in the first attack against Trump, accusing him of hedging his bets. Paul said Trump “buys and sells politicians of al stripes.” An interesting question to start off the debate by the Fox News moderators.
9:00 pm: The debate starts and Donald Trump, the undisputed frontrunner, is introduced first. He’s followed by Jeb Bush, who is second in the polls. Ohio Governor and former Fox News contributor John Kasich gets a rousing ovation from the hometown crowd (much more enthusiastic than the reception he will get from conservative primary voters).
8:58 pm: Kelly says the candidates are probably glad Carly Fiorina is not in the main event because she “unleashed a can” earlier. Kelly says it would have tough to have had 17 candidates.
8:57 pm: Co-moderator Megyn Kelly admits to being a bit nervous. Co-moderator Bret Baier said last month that he got “cold sweats” thinking about how to contain Donald Trump.
8:56 pm: A packed stadium sure does make a difference. The debate already feels much more energetic than the so-called happy hour debate.