The GOP presidential candidates battle tonight (the undercard debate starts at 7PM ET, followed by the main event at 9PM ET) at the Milwaukee Theatre in Milwaukee, Wisconsin in the Fox Business Network/Wall Street Journal debate.
Breitbart News Senior Editor-at-Large Joel Pollak goes over what each candidate must accomplish tonight. On Breitbart News Daily, Michelle Malkin said questions about high-tech guest-worker visas should be a centerpiece of the debate. Jon Feere, a top immigration expert at the Center for immigration Studies, pointed out that GOP candidates and debate moderators never want to discuss or debate whether immigration levels should be curbed until more Americans are employed. Breitbart News Washington Political Editor Matt Boyle discusses where the candidates stand on the Trans-Pacific Partnership deal and how that may be a pivotal issue in the debate the differentiates the various candidates.
This is the first debate after the CNBC debacle and takes place a day after the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals upheld a lower court’s injunction against President Barack Obama’s executive amnesty programs by denying the Obama administration’s appeal. And it will be interesting whether and how immigration issues, which are inextricably linked to the economy, are discussed.
When Rupert Murdoch was the network’s CEO, he argued in the Wall Street Journal, whose editorial board has ardently supported open borders, that amnesty legislation and an unlimited number of high-tech visas “can’t wait.” Murdoch has also praised Jeb Bush on immigration and criticized Donald Trump.
Fox Business Network says the debate “will focus on jobs, taxes, and the general health of the economy, as well as domestic and international policy issues.” Its promo declared: “CNBC never asked the real questions, never covered the real issues. That’s why on November 10, the real debate about our economy and our future is only on Fox Business Network.”
Fox Business anchors Sandra Smith and Trish Regan, along with the Wall Street Journal’s Gerald Seib, will moderate the undercard debate. Fox Business’s Maria Bartiromo and Neil Cavuto, along with Wall Street Journal Editor-In-Chief Gerard Baker will moderate the main event.
Before Fox News’s first debate–where Megyn Kelly tried to take out Donald Trump–it was clear Fox News was telegraphing potential attacks against frontrunner Donald Trump. Before this debate, it seems like the Wall Street Journal has been trying to set up attacks on Dr. Ben Carson (their hit pieces have backfired and been debunked), the other outsider frontrunner the Republican establishment does not like. Trump has indicated that he will not go after Carson while Rubio’s team thinks this debate is their chance to potentially knock Jeb Bush out of the race. Before the election season, this debate seemed like it was set up to give Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker momentum, but Walker dropped out of race and he, like Tim Pawlenty in the last election cycle, may wonder what could have been had his campaign been run like a start-up operation and he stayed in the race.
New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee, Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal, and former Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum will participate in the undercard debate. Former New York Governor George Pataki and Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) failed to qualify for the undercard debate with their dismal poll numbers.
Donald Trump, Dr. Ben Carson, Carly Fiorina, Ohio Governor John Kasich, Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY), Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL), Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX), and former Florida Governor Jeb Bush will be on the main stage.
Breitbart News Washington Political Editor Matt Boyle and Breitbart News political reporters Julia Hahn and Alex Swoyer are on site in Milwaukee. Breitbart News will be providing live updates throughout the evening.
Breitbart’s Joel Pollak: FOREIGN POLICY CLASHES AT GOP DEBATE ON ECONOMY
11:11: Closing Statements:
Trump: He says over the years he has created tens of thousands of jobs and a great company. It’s a company that he is very proud of. He says he doesn’t have to give you a website because he is self-funding his campaign. Trump says he wants to make our country greater than it has ever been before and “we cannot lose this election” and “we cannot let Hillary Clinton, who was the worst Secretary of State in the history of our country, win this election.”
“We will fight. We will win. And we truly will make this even more special. We have to make it better than ever before. And I will tell you, the United States can actually be better than ever before. Thank you.”
Carson: He says in the two hours that the candidates have been debating, five people have died from drug-related deaths, $100 million have been added to the national debt, 200 babies have been killed by abortionists, and two veterans have taken their lives out of despair.
“This is a narrative that we can change,” he says. “Not we the Democrats. Not we the Republicans. But We the People of America because there is something special about this nation and we must embrace it and be proud of it and never give it away for the sake of political correctness.”
Rubio: He says because Washington is out of touch, for the first time of history, Americans are doubting whether they can leave a better country to their children for the first time in history. He says if the next four years are anything like the last eight years, “our children will be the first ever left worse off by their parents.” He says the 21st century can be a new American century.
Cruz: He says his father fled Cuba 58 years ago and looked forward to the promise of America. His story is our story, he says. He says we are all the children of those who risked everything for freedom. He says if we get back to the free-market principles and the Constitutional liberties that built this country, we can turn this country around. He says 2016 will be like 1980 and Republicans will win like Reagan did in 1980 by painting with bold colors.
Jeb: He says we don’t need an agitator-in-chief or a divider-in-chief but a commander-in-chief (but “low energy” Jeb doesn’t seem like a strong Commander-in-Chief) that will restore respect to our veterans and rebuild our military.
Fiorina: “Imagine a Clinton Presidency she says” (yes, Bobby Kennedy told people to “imagine.” And Frank Luntz has been telling every Republican to use “imagine” in their speeches. Cruz’s intro speech used the frame)… She says the military will deteriorate, veterans will not be cared for, rich will get richer, the poor will get poorer, and the middle class will continue to get crushed. She says as bad as that picture is, what’s worse is that a Clinton presidency will corrode the character of the nation because of the “Clinton way”–say whatever you have to and lie as long as you can get away with it. She is a President Florina will restore the character of the nation.
Kasich: He says he worries about the future of his kids if Hillary or Bernie Sanders win the election. He says conservatism is about running American from the bottom-up and each of us have a responsibility to rebuild neighborhoods and communities.
Paul: America is the richest, freest, most humanitarian nation in history but we “also borrow a million dollars a minute.” He asks, “can you be a fiscal conservative if you don’t conserve all of the money?” He says we have to be conservative with all spending–domestic and welfare. “I’m the only fiscal conservative on the stage.”
11: 05: Paul, on climate change, says he would repeal the energy regulations that are hampering the energy industry. He says man may have a role in our climate, “I think nature also has a role.” He says the climate is 4.5 billion years old and we have gone through one geological age after another. He says there needs to be balance between keeping the environment clean and the economy. He says Obama is destroying the Kentucky industry and the Democrat party because nobody wants to be associated with Obama’s environmental regulations. He says it would be a huge mistake to shut down all of the coal plants.
11:03: Trump speaks about corporate inversions and says companies are leaving for other countries and have trillions in those countries. He says Democrats and Republicans both agree that the money should be allowed to come back in and rebuild investments in our country. He says his 10% tax rate would allow all of the money pour back into the United States which will “make America great again.”
11: 01: Cruz blasts Hillary for her failed policies. He says Hillary “embodies the cronyism of Washington” and her “policies have proven disastrous” and “every region has gotten worse” under her leadership.
10:59: Bartiromo, after being booed for saying that Hillary has an “impressive resume,” tees up a question for Rubio to allow him to repeat his stump speech about the election being about the future and “turning the page” (Rubio is trying to do do Jeb and Hillary what Obama did to Hillary and George W. Bush) … she asks Rubio, “why should the American people trust you even though she has been so much closer to the office.”
Rubio says the election is “about the future” and a “generational choice” about what kind of nation we want to be in the 21st century. He says the Democratic Party and the political left “has no ideas about the future” and “all their ideas are the same tired ideas of the past.” He says all of their solutions are about “a new tax on someone and a new government program.” He says if he is the nominee, the GOP will be the party of the future and Democrats will be the party of the past;
This question is like Todd Frazier’s brother throwing him pitches in the Home Run Derby.
10: 55: Fiorina blasts Dodd-Frank as a great example of how socialism starts–government creates a problem and then steps in to solve the problem. She says government created the problem of the real estate boom/bubble and then government stepped in to solve it.
“This is how socialism starts ladies and gentlemen,” she says. “We must take our government back.”
10: 52: Cruz asks Kasich why he would bail out rich banks but not bail out average Americans.
10: 51: Kasich, again interjecting, says banks must be bailed out when depositors are about to lose their life savings “and you just don’t say we believe in philosophical concerns.” He says on-the-job training for presidents do not work, touts his executive experience, and says “philosophy doesn’t work when you run something.”
10:48: Cruz is asked if he would go after the very people the crooks that Bernie Sanders says have gotten away with “financial murder.” Cruz says “cronyism” underlies all of this. He then says “absolutely not” to the question about whether candidates would bail out banks. He says “the biggest lie in Washington and all of politics is that Republicans are the party of the rich. The truth is the rich do great with big government. They get in bed with big government.” He says because of this fundamental corruption, 6 of the ten wealthiest counties are in or around Washington.
When Cavuto asks if Cruz would let Bank of America fail if it was on the brink. Cruz simply responds, “yes.” He says he would not bail them out but instead says the Fed should be serving as the lender of last resort. It is a loan at higher interest rates, Cruz says, and not a bailout. He says we need to get back to “sound money” that helps working men and women. He says people who do well in the Obama economy are those with power and influence in the Obama government.
10:45: Rubio says the banks are so big because the government made them so big by adding thousands of pages of regulations. Big banks can deal with them by hiring fancy lawyers, he says, and, as a result, the small banks have trouble keeping up. He blasts Dodd-Frank for codifying too big to fail. He says it’s an outrage and “we need to replace Dodd-Frank as soon as possible.”
10:42: Carson says he would have policies in place so banks would not have to be broken up. Carson says regulations are creating abnormal situations. He says America became the economic power of the world less than 100 years after its birth because “we had an atmosphere that encouraged entrepreneurship can capital investment,” which Carson says are the “fuels that drive it.” He says the creep of regulation has turned into the “stampede of regulation” that gets involved in every aspects of our lives. He says they hurt the poor and the middle class much more than they hurt the rich. He says Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton won’t tell you that regulations are actually hurting the middle class and the poor.
10:40: Bush says we should raise the capital requirements so banks aren’t too big to fail and lessen the load on community banks. He blasts Hillary Clinton for wanting to double down on the vast overreach created by Dodd-Frank. Bush says he is worried that America will not have community banks because of Dodd-Frank. He blasts Clinton for flip-flopping on TPP and Keystone Pipeline, implies he supports TPP because it would create “economic growth.”
10:33: Rubio says he’s never met Putin but knows enough to “know that he’s a gangster.”
10:30: Paul says it is naive and foolish to think that we’re not going to talk to Russia. Paul says that, regarding the no-fly zone, “you’re asking for a no-fly zone in an area in which Russia already flies. Russia flies in that zone at the invitation of Iraq.” Paul says a no-fly means we would have to shoot down Russian planes, which means more American sons and daughters will be sent to Iraq.
“You can be strong without being involved in every civil war in the world,” he said.
Paul says he wouldn’t arm our enemies like ISIS. He says most of the people who favor a no-fly zone were in favor of arming the allies of al-qaeda, which became ISIS.
“That was the dumbest, most foolhardy notion, and most of the people up here supported it,” Paul says. “That’s how ISIS grew… we pushed back Assad and ISIS was allowed to grow in the vacuum. So the first thing you do is don’t arm your enemies.”
Trump blasts Fiorina for interrupting everybody. “Terrible,” he says.
10: 27: Fiorina says that Trump fancies himself a very good negotiator and he should know that we should not negotiate from a position of weakness. She says she met Putin in a private meeting and not in a green room. She speaks about rebuilding the sixth fleet and the missile defense system right under his nose and put in thousands of more troops in Germany to let Putin know that America will stand with its allies. She says there must be a no-fly zone in Syria so Russia cannot tell America where it can and cannot fly its planes.
10:26: Trump blasts the Iraq War and the mess that we have after spending trillions.
“I said keep the oil and we should have kept the oil,” Trump says. “We should have given the oil… we should have given big chunks to the people who lost their arms, their legs, and their families, and their sons and daughters because right now you know who has a lot of that oil? Iran and ISIS.
10:25: Jeb says America must be the world’s leader because voids are fill and accuses Trump of treating foreign policy like playing a “board game.”
“That’s not how the real world works,” Trump says.
10: 23: Trump says he got to know Putin very well because they were stable mates on 60 minutes. He says if Putin wants to destroy ISIS, he is all for it and he doesn’t understand how anyone can be against it. He says “he cannot be in love with these people” after they blew up a Russian airplane. Regarding Ukraine, Trump asks, “why are we always doing the work?” He says we cannot be the “policemen of the world” and “we have to start investing money in our country.”
10:20: Bush: Islamic terrorism is the greatest threat facing America. He says that voids are filled when we pull back in Iraq and Obama “doesn’t believe in American leadership” and so we have “a caliphate the size of Indiana” in the region that will even recruit Americans even in our own country. He says there should be a no-fly zone in Syria with safe zones for the remnants of the Syrian free army.
10: 15: Paul says that China is not a part of this deal… and argues that China may not like the deal because we are treating with their competitors. Paul says it’s a mistake that we give up the power to the president on the trade deals. Paul says that so much power has gravitated to the executive branch in recent years that we should be careful about giving more power.
10:11: Trump is asked about the Trans-Pacific Partnership: “A Horrible Deal.”
Trump says it is a “deal that is going to lead to nothing but trouble.” He says it was designed to let China through the back door and take advantage of everyone. He says nobody read it like Obamacare.
“This is one of the worst trade deals,” Trump says. “I would rather not have it.”
He says all of the countries are taking advantage of the good countries and calls for bilateral trade deals since the U.S. loses a fortune on all the trade deals.
“I’m a free trader, but we need smart people making the deals, and we don’t have smart people making the deals,” Trump says.
He blasts the Chinese for using currency manipulation–“the single greatest weapon people have”–to take advantage of America.
10:08: Trump says each of one of the tax plans being discussed is better than the “mess that we have right now.” Trump also says “we have to make our military bigger, better, stronger than ever before so nobody messes with us.” He says “we have no choice.”
10: 03: Rubio blasts Paul for being a “committed isolationist” and says the world is a stronger and better place when the United States is the strongest military power in the world. Paul asks how it is conservative to add trillion dollars in military expenditures you can’t pay for. Rubio says that “we can’t even have an economy if we’re not safe.” He speaks about radical Jihadists in the Middle East, Chinese taking over the South China Sea, and Iranians trying to get nuclear weapons. Paul says America is not any safer from bankruptcy court. Paul asks, “can you be a conservative and be liberal on military spending?”
“I want a strong national defense, but I don’t want us to be bankrupt,” Paul says.
Cruz say there is a “middle ground that brings both of these together.” He it is more expensive to not defend the nation and Cruz says you can defend the nation and pay for it. He goes into sugar subsidies that must be eliminated and other corporate welfare programs that could be eliminated to pay for defending the nation.
Fiorina says this is why we have to combine tax reform with zero-based budgeting.
9:55: Cruz is asked how he can cut taxes without running up the debt/deficit. He says there are more words in the IRS code than in the Bible and “every one of them reflects a carve out or a subsidy” and it’s “all about empowering the Washington cartel.” His simple flat tax (no taxes for income under $34,000 for a family of four)–every American pays 10% across the board above that, which Cruz says will mean hedge fund managers will no longer pay a lower rate than their secretaries. He says his plan eliminates the payroll, death, and corporate income taxes and “abolishes the IRS,” which will lead to double-digit increases for every economic group. Cruz says he would eliminate five agencies–IRS, Commerce, Energy, HUD… and mentions Commerce twice. Must be a Texas thing.
9:53: Paul is asked whether his tax plan would create an budgetary crisis. He says he wants lower taxes and much more money in the private sector. He says his tax plan is part of a balanced budget plan that will balance the budget over a five-year period. He says he has put pencil to paper and done three budgets and actually cut things. He also is in favor the Penny Plan that cuts 1% across the board and balances the budget in five years. His plan would also get rid of the payroll tax and the business tax pays for social security. He says there will only be two deductions–home mortgage and charity.
9:51: Carson is asked whose tax plan God would endorse–“yours or Mr. Trump’s?”
Carson speaks about getting rid of all deductions and loopholes and setting the rate at an “appropriate level.” Carson says people will be more generous if you put more money in people’s pockets regarding eliminating charitable deductions in the tax code. He says there will also be a rebate for people at the poverty level. He also says as the economy gets moving there will be a lot more opportunities for poor people to not be poor people.
9:45: Fiorina blasts Obamacare as “crony capitalism at its worst” because drug companies are bulking up to deal with big government. She says we have to repeal Obamacare and give back to states the responsibility of managing a high-risk pool. She says “we need to try the free market” in health care where people actually have to compete where government must also ensure that every health care provider must publish its costs, outcomes because “we don’t know what we are buying” as patients.
9:43: Cruz says Democrats are laughing because if Republicans join Democrats “as the party of amnesty, we will lose.” He says the mainstream media does not see immigration as an economic issue but for millions of Americans at home, “it’s a very personal economic issue.” He says the politics of it would be different if a bunch of lawyers or bankers were crossing the Rio Grande–or if a bunch of people with journalism degrees were coming over and driving down the wages of the press.
“Then we would see the stories about the economic calamity that is befalling our nation,” Cruz says.
Cruz says it is “offensive” to say that it is “anti-immigrant” to oppose amnesty. He says try going into other countries like Mexico or Japan illegally and “see what they do.”
“Every sovereign nation secures its borders,” he says.
He says it is “not compassionate” to not enforce the laws and “drive down the wages for millions of hard-working men and women. That is abandoning the working class.”
9:42: Cruz on entitlements: gradually raise the retirement age for younger workers and allow them to keep some of their taxes in a personal account.
9:40: Rubio is asked about traditional jobs that are going away because of automation, etc. He says it took the telephone 75 years to reach 1 million users and it took candy crush a year. He speaks about the highest business tax rate in the industrial world and a health care law that discourages business from hiring Americans, an outdated higher education system. Rubio talks about the need to teach 21st century skills, but, again, no mention of his comprehensive amnesty legislation that would triple the number of guest-workers to take those jobs that required “21st century skills.”
9:38: Trump says amnesty “very, very unfair” to millions of people who want to come to the United States legally.
9:36: Jeb: “Practical’ for Illegals to Earn Legalization :
Bush thanks Trump for allowing him to speak at the debate. He says it is “not possible” to deport illegal immigrants and it is “not embracing American values” and it “would be tearing communities apart.” He says the Clinton campaign is doing high-fives and you win election with “practical plans.” Jeb speaks about the need for earn legalization.
9:35: On the amnesty question, Trump hilariously tells Kasich, “you should let Jeb speak. It’s unfair.”
9:33: Kasich says law-abiding illegal immigrants should be allowed to stay.
“Come on folks, we all know you can’t pick them up and ship them across the border,” Kasich says. “It’s a silly argument.”
Trump notes that Dwight Eisenhower moved 1.5 million illegal immigrants out of the country.
“You don’t get nicer, you don’t get friendlier,” Trump says of Eisenhower. “We have no choice.”
9:31: Trump is asked about the 5th Circuit’s decision to reject Obama’s executive amnesty.
“I was so happy yesterday when I saw that decision came down,” he says. ” We don’t have enough of those decisions coming down…. that was a great day.”
Trump says that illegal immigration is hurting us economically, causing drug problems, especially in the inner cities. He says the courts had not been ruling in our favor and “it was a terrific thing that happened.”
“We are a country of laws. We need borders,” Trump said. He says to ask Israel about whether walls work.
Trump says “we are a country of laws” and illegals will have to go out before some are allowed to come back.
9:30: Carson is asked if he is worried that his campaign is being hurt by disproven allegations that he may have embellished some incidents in his autobiography. He says he has no problem being vetted but he has a problem being lied about and putting that out as truth. Carson blasts Clinton for telling her family that the Benghazi attacks were a terrorist attacks while telling the American people it was a spontaneous response.” He says everybody should be treated the same.
9:24: Rand Paul: Income Inequality Worse in cities, states, countries run by Democrats.
Paul is asked about CEOs earning 300 times the average salary of the worker and income inequality. Paul says that income inequality is the worst in cities, states, and countries run by Democrats. He also blasts the Federal Reserve for making the problem worse by keeping the interest rate artificially below the market rate.
“If you want less income inequality, move to a city with a Republican mayor or a state with a Republican governor,” he says.
9:21: Fiorina is asked how she would respond to the claim that Democrats create more jobs than Republicans. She speaks about a woman she met on the campaign trail who told her that she was afraid for the future of her children. She says government has grown bigger and bigger and become more corrupt and crushing the engine of economic growth. She says the election is about challenging the status quo of big government and politics. She speaks about zero-based budgeting, reform the tax code (3 pages), doing a top-to-bottom review of the bureaucracy, pass the REINS Act, and hold government officials accountable for their performance.
9:18: Bush is asked what regulations he would change to get the country back to 4% growth. He says we have structural deficits because more people are relying on government. He says his tax reform plan, according to the Wall Street Journal, is the most pro-growth plan. He says it would “create an explosion of investment” back into he country. He also says every rule under the Obama administration should be repealed and we should start over. He says we should repeal the rules because the economic costs exceed the social benefit. Bush is again wonky and sounds like a D.C. technocrat. He needs to give real-life examples of how these rules hurt Americans.
9:16: Cruz is asked about another potential recession in America and his 10% income tax/16% business tax plan. Cruz says economic growth is foundational to every challenge we have… and says 1.2% a year growth on average does not have to be the new normal.
He speaks about the needing regulatory reform and pulling back the armies of regulatory agents who have descended upon business like locusts. He then says we need sound money again.
9:11 PM: Kasich is asked what specific steps he would take to balance the budget. Kasich helped balanced the budget when he was in Congress during the Clinton administration and it’s one of his top calling cards. A complete softball for the establishment favorite. Kasich talks about his hardscrabble background and says an “economic theory is fine” but people need help. His plan would cut the tax rates for individuals and businesses. He says he has the only plan to get us to a balanced budget by the end of the second term. He says Hillary and the Democrats promise everything on the spending side but Republicans have to be responsible on what to propose on the tax side. He says it’s important to balance the budget so people can get work. He would move the Medicare system from 7% growth to 5% when asked about specific steps he would take to balance the budget. He talks about freezing non-defense spending for eight years with tax cuts balancing out. He says he stepped on every toe in town when he was the architect of balancing the budget under the Clinton administration and he will do it again.
9:09 PM: Rubio is asked what he would take away regarding the “free stuff” Democrats offered in the last debate. Interestingly, another establishment favorite–Chris Christie–got the “free stuff” question in the undercard debate. Rubio says raising the minimum wage would be a disaster because people are going to be more expensive than machines. His comprehensive amnesty bill would have lowered the wages of American workers, but the Fox Business Network/Wall Street Journal moderators won’t bring that up.
Rubio says that welders should make more than philosophers. He doesn’t answer the question about what “stuff” he would take away.
9:07 PM: Carson says that people need to be educated on the minimum wage–the number of jobless people increases whenever the minimum wage is raised. He says it is a particular problem in the black community and implies that raising the minimum wage may create more joblessness in the black community where youth unemployment rates are high. He talks about allowing people to “ascend the ladder of opportunity” rather than keeping them dependent. He said he would not raise it so that people are able to enter the job market and take advantage of their opportunities.
9:05 PM: Trump against raising minimum wage, not sympathetic to protests:
Cavuto talks about the picketers who are demanding a $15/hour minimum wage. He asks Trump if he is sympathetic to their cause. He says he is not sympathetic because “we don’t win anymore” in a country where taxes and wages are often too high. He says “we have to leave it the way it is” and “we cannot do this if” American wants to compete with the rest of the world.
9:00 PM: The Main Event begins. Hopefully the debate will be more substantive and less hectic with just eight candidates on stage. Messrs. Trump and Carson are at center stage.
Breitbart’s Joel Pollak on Chris Christie slamming Hillary over and over again.
The moderators asked a lot of questions about working Americans, but there hardly any questions about immigration policy (besides the Syrian refugee question to Huckabee). Perhaps they are saving that discussion for the Main Event, but it was interesting that a debate that featured so many questions about how the candidates would help people on Main Street, there was no discussion about how immigration policy–which represents the greatest divide between Main Street and Wall Street–impacts Americans on Main Street.
8:15: Closing statements:
Christie says he wants to tell the American people the truth and says one of the most disgusting things that he has seen was Hillary Clinton saying she was proud to have Republicans as enemies when there is Al-Qaeda, ISIS, Putin, and the mullahs in Iran. Christie says he will go to Washington to “bring this entire country together for a better future for our children and grandchildren.”
Huckabee says the election “ought to be about you.” He says he never has been the favorite “of the people who have the most money,” but “I want to be the favorite of people who still want to believe that the American Dream can work for them.” He says a little girl named Reece sent him a letter from North Dakota and $6 from her allowance and said “I want to help you become president.” He says he is going to keep fighting to be president because “somewhere out there in North Dakota and all over America there are kids like Reece who need a president who will never forget where they came from and I promise you I won’t.”
Santorum says the campaign has been about two words: “working families.” He says “we have to start making things again in America” and stand up at the bully pulpit and talk about the dignity of being a carpenter or welder and the dignity of work and about the the importance of families. He says “working families” is the key to the election.
Jindal says he believes in the American Dream and Obama has done a lot of damage to the country, especially trying to make it into one of dependence. He again says a Republican who will take on the establishment of both parties must be elected to cut the size of government.
8:09: Candidates are asked how to restore the connection that Americans had with the military.
Santorum: He says Obama has not stood behind the men and women in uniform at home because he has not stood behind them overseas. He blasts the political, poll-driven wars of the Obama administration.
He says “Commander-In-Chief is not an entry-level position.”
Christie: He says the way to reconnect with veterans is to have a Commander-in-Chief who respects those in uniform. “It starts at the top,” he says.” He blasts Clinton for saying there is no crisis at the VA–he says it shows she “doesn’t get it” and doesn’t respect their service. He says Obama loses the moral authority to lead any man or woman in uniform when he doesn’t get the backs of police officers.
Huckabee: He says veterans should appreciate a better paycheck. He says they faced dangers on our behalf and we promised them that we would take care of their medical care and make it possible for their kids to go to college.
“They’ve kept their promises to us,” Huckabee says. “We have not kept out promises to them.”
He says we our fighting wars with other people’s kids because we have not taken the seriously the “moral obligation” to take care of the veterans and to “keep America’s promises to the ones who kept their promise to America.”
Jindal says that “we need to fire” VA bureaucrats and some of them need to go to jail. He says that he has hand-delivered medals to veterans to thank them for their service. He talks about veterans saying nobody has thanked them before. He says though Obama doesn’t believe in American exceptionalism, but we still do and it’s because of the men and women in uniform and “we should thank them every day not just veterans day.”
8:06: Santorum says his mother and father met at a VA and the often discussed the decline of the VA at their kitchen table. He says the VA is antiquated and there is no need for a VA system as it existed after WWI. He says we needed it in the 1950s so “we built the best” but “we didn’t maintain the best” and “government didn’t keep its promises to its veterans.”
He says veterans should be allowed to go private hospitals for routine and ordinary care. He says there is a place for the VA for unique problems for veterans like PTSD. He speaks about “centers for excellence” to treat those injuries.
8:04: Huckabee, asked about whether Janet Yellen should stay as the Fed Chair, he says his wife’s name is Janet and jokes: “and when you say Janet Yellen, I’m very familiar with what you mean.”
He says wages in the bottom of the economy have been stagnant for 40 years and the Fed has manipulated the dollar so it doesn’t have a standard. He says either tie the dollar to gold or commodity baskets… he says people who go out and work must get something in return and if the dollar keeps fluctuating, then people can’t get ahead. He says he would “absolutely” change leadership at the Fed because they need to tie the monetary standard to something that makes sense “rather than to their own wins” because Americans on Main Street are being “gut punched.”
“One root canal and they’re in trouble,” Huckabee says. “And if their car breaks down the same week, they’re out of business.”
8:01: Santorum says the Fed is protecting a president who is overtaxing and over-regulating the economy and holding the economy up like Atlas with the earth… he says “it’s not a good deal for the vast majority of responsible Americans.” He says the Fed has been given way too much authority under Dodd-Frank and “that’s only part of the problem.” He pivots to the family and says that’s the most important business. He says the breakdown of the nuclear family in America is responsible for the hollowing out of the American economy and Republicans must talk about strengthening marriage and “return dads into homes in all communities.”
He says “there are no dads” in the communities that are protesting and hurting the most and “we need to do something about it.”
7:59: Christie on the Federal Reserve keeping interest rates low, says it was right to first cut the rates during the economic crisis. But Christie says the Fed has artificially kept interest rates low to help Obama’s economic agenda. He says the Fed should be audited and “stop playing politics with our money supply.” He again goes after Clinton and says government will be more involved in the economy if she wins the White House.
7:55: Jindal says we can talk all night about taxes, but “we really need to be talking” about how poverty and inequality have gone up as government has spent more.
“We can’t keep spending money we don’t have,” Jindal says. He says “we keep stealing from our children,” which he says is “immoral,” regardless of whether Republicans or Democrats are in control and emphasizes that “we cannot afford to elect a big-government Republicans.”
“Hillary Clinton is gift-wrapping this election to us,” Jindal says. “Let’s not waste this opportunity to apply conservative principles and cut the size of government.”
7:51: Huckabee is challenged on the Fair Tax and whether it would discourage spending and slow down the economy. He says when something is made in America, 22% of the cost of it is the embedded tax they don’t even know they paid. He says that is why China is being the “daylights out of us” because they are not embedding taxes in their goods. Huckabee says every American would see their real paycheck for the first time and used goods won’t be taxes. He says Americans will not stop shopping and spending and the current system “punishes productivity” and “rewarding irresponsibility.”
7:48: Candidates are asked what is the highest/lowest (“all in”)Americans should pay in taxes (federal income tax, state income tax, local tax, etc.). They are asked for two percentages.
Santorum: 33% and 20%
Christie: 28% and 8%
Jindal: 25%, 10% and 2%. He says the 2% number is the most important because everybody should have skin in the game so they make the federal government more accountable with their tax dollars. He again attacks Christie on taxes.
Huckabee: He again touts the Fair Tax and says it’s the best solution we have for economic growth.
7:44: Seib asked candidates the one person they most admire on the Democratic side.
Jindal says the question is ridiculous and wants to fire everyone in D.C.
Huckabee says that since we are not going to answer the question, tomorrow is veterans day and he says we would fix congress and the VA if Congress and the President had to get their healthcare from the VA.
Christie says he will continue the pattern and says what disturbs him most about Democrats in D.C. is they are not standing behind the police officers and allowing lawlessness to reign. He says he’ll have their backs in the White House.
Santorum now answers the infrastructure question and says other than vital economic highways, the federal government needs to get out of the infrastructure business.
“We don’t need the federal government in the road business,” he says.
He says he respects Democrats in D.C. because they are “willing to fight” and “take it to us.” The obvious implication is that the GOP leadership–like Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY) and others–are not and do not fight for conservative principles like Democrats fight for liberal principles and policies.
7:42: Santorum is asked about gas taxes to pay for infrastructure improvements and says he is the “principled conservative” who has won in a blue state. He says he was the author of welfare reform that actually cut federal spending/entitlements. He says he beat the author of Hillarycare by running on health savings accounts and being pro-life and pro-family.
7:39: Jindal, when asked about Obamacare, says his plan to replace Obamacare will actually get rid of, reduces the costs and puts American patients and doctors back in control. He goes after Ted Cruz for not having a plan to replace Obamacare and says the only other person who has a comprehensive plan is Jeb Bush and he increases entitlements.
Jindal says he’ll give Christie a “juice box” and “ribbon” for participating but it’s about results. He says that Republicans won a majority in Congress by promising to end Obamacare and executive amnesty and then caved and implies those like Christie will be more of the same. Christie again says Republicans need someone who has beaten Democrats in a blue state.
7:35: Christie says people will call him a lot of things in New Jersey but “liberal” isn’t one of them. Christie says it’s hard to even see Hillary anymore because she is running so far to the left to catch up to socialist Bernie Sanders. Christie says he has won in a blue state and that’s who Republicans should want going up against Hillary. Jindal says “records matter” and goes after Christie again, saying “do we want to grow government or do we want to grow the American economy?” He blasts Christie for caving on Obamacare and expanding food stamps in New Jersey.
7:33: Jindal says we should, unlike Obamacare, read the Trans-Pacific Partnership deal before we vote on it. Jindal pivots back to the need to nominate a true conservative to beat Hillary Clinton because Republicans have been in power in Congress and accomplished nothing. He takes the rest of the time to attack Christie’s fiscal record (budget has gone up in addition to nine credit downgrades) in New Jersey.
“Let’s not just beat Hillary. Let’s elect a conservative to the White House. Not just any Republican,” Jindal says.
7:30: Christie blasts the “weak” and “feckless” Obama/Clinton foreign policy. He says China doesn’t take us seriously — and why should they. He says he was one of the victims of the China cyber-hack because he, as a former U.S. attorney general, had his fingerprints, Social Security number, and personal information in the government database. And Obama has not done “one thing.” He says if China commits cyber-warfare against us, “they are going to see cyber warfare like they’ve never seen before.” He says he will make sure the people of China see all the information they take so they can see how the Chinese government is spending their money. He also says the Chinese will know he means business when he flies Air Force One over their artificial islands.
7:28: Huckabee, on Syrian refugees, says that he has been concerned that the Obama administration has not done anything to stop the slaughter in the Middle East. He says only one in five “Syrian” refugees were Syrian. He warns against potentially allowing ISIS members to get a place to stay with a good sandwich and medical benefits when we are $19 trillion in debt and “can’t afford to take care of Americans.” He says American should build an encampment for Syrian refugees closer to where they live and ask the Saudis to step up. He says he is tired of Americans being the only ones asked to do the heavy lifting when it comes to charity. He says his main concern is to help Americans taking it in the gut and says America will be in a much better position to help the world if its economy grows and the dollar stabilizes.
7:25: Santorum, asked about opposing federal bailout funds for automakers, says he was right to oppose those funds. He says he is a capitalist and not a corporatists and America should not bail out the auto industry or the banks. He says the losers were the bond holders sand the unions were the winners after the auto bailout. He says we need a level playing field when it comes to manufacturing and he says he is for the Export-Import bank, which will not be a popular position with conservatives. He says he is for it because it will help American manufacturing.
7:19: Christie says that Hillary Clinton is the real adversary tonight and Republicans should stay focused on her. He says, invoking Willie Sutton, where the money is in the federal government is in the entitlement programs and the country cannot go down the road of more debt. Christie says he would sign an executive order that bans regulations for 120 days by any department or agency in his first day in office.
“Hillary Clinton is coming for your wallet, everybody,” Christie says. “Don’t worry about Huckabee or Jindal. Worry about her.”
7:17: Huckabee, days before Arkansas plays LSU, responds to Jindal and says during the 2001-2003 recession, he cut 11% of the budget so we didn’t have to raise taxes. He says it’s not accurate to say nobody has ever cut spending. Huckabee says Governor Christie has probably cut spending and then says he is tossing him the ball like Arkansas did against Ole Miss over the weekend on the 4th down lateral that Arkansas running back Alex Collins eventually secured and ran for a first down in overtime.
7:16: Jindal says Republicans lose elections because they are trying to be the “cheaper version of the Democrat party.” Jindal says he is the only one who has cut government spending. He says if they haven’t done it in their states, what makes people think they can cut spending in D.C.? He says Republicans cannot be the “second version of the liberal party” and cut spending in order to grow the American economy. He blasts the Senators running for president for giving long speeches and patting themselves on the back–he says when they go relieve themselves, “their cause and the toilets get flushed at the same time and the American people lose.”
7:14: Huckabee, on entitlements, says there is a difference between welfare programs and what people say are entitlements (Social Security and Medicare). He says those are earned benefits (not welfare) because the money was taken out of the checks of Americans involuntarily and Americans should not be forced to pay for the government’s mistakes and incompetence. He says that’s different than the social programs that were designed not to get people out of poverty but to benefit the poverty industry. Huckabee says that having grown up poor, he knows a little something about it. He says nobody who is poor wants to be poor but the system keeps pushing them down because if they work, they lose all benefits. He says the American way is that people should always be better off than they were before as they move from welfare to work.
7:12: Santorum, when asked about child care and whether mothers may think it is more beneficial to live off of government benefits, says that the tax code often penalizes the family and his is very pro-family– he mentions a refundable $8,000 family tax credit. He says right now, because of some elements of the tax code, people can lose money if they get off of welfare and go back to work. He says the tax code incentivizes cohabitation rather marriage, and he says we need to adopt a tax code that is pro-family and pro-work.
7:10: Christie, when asked how Republicans can win elections without offering free stuff, says that Democrats forgot to tell Americans they will raise taxes considerably if they want to fulfill all of their promises
“Do you want to give Americans more control over your life?” Christie asks.
He says Hillary Clinton believes Washington should pick winners and losers in the economy and life and he says we need to “get government the hell out of the way and let the American people win once again.”
7:08: Jindal is asked about energy and says Louisiana is in the top ten for job growth and the state has diversified its economy. He says Louisiana also has a growing IT sector. He says the most important thing we have to do is debate about whether we have to cut government to grow the American economy. He says we have a record amount of dependency under the Obama administration. He says we need to shrink the government instead of slowing its growth rate in order to grow the American economy, which he says is the fundamental issue that Republicans should be debating.
7:06: Santorum has arguably been talking about bringing manufacturing jobs back to America more than any other candidate, so these questions are in his wheelhouse. Santorum says he goes to a manufacturer every week and talks about his 20-20 tax plan that he says will help American manufacturers. Santorum says the country has to do more about training people in America out of high school to fill some of the manufacturing jobs.
7:04: Huckabee says he doesn’t know why we have to move away from manufacturing. He says the only reason why we are is because the tax code punishes manufacturing. Huckabee uses the opportunity to tout the Fair Tax, which he says will not punish people for working. He says the Fair Tax will allow jobs to be brought back from places like Mexico because you don’t tax labor.
“We don’t reduce the IRS, we eliminate the IRS,” Huckabee says of the Fair Tax.
Huckabee also says America must fight for itself by manufacturing its own weapons for self-defense.
7:02: Christie, who is trying to have his Carly Fiorina moment in the undercard debate, talks about a woman in New Hampshire who told him that she gets anxiety at the end of the each month because she doesn’t know whether she will be able to pay the bills. Christie says there are tens of millions of Americans living that way and “if we do not change course… we’re going to be in the same circumstances” with government picking winners and losers. He says the tax code must be fairer, simpler and flatter because right now it’s rigged for the rich. He says Americans will be able to file their taxes in 15 minutes under his plan and he’ll gleefully be able to fire a bunch of IRS agents.