Fox journalists did much better keeping the debate on topic and they did not use the questions to attempt to make the candidates squirm as CNBC journalists did in the previous debate.
I may be in a minority, but I still like John Kasich the best by far. Kasich shows that he knows what he is doing in government and as a leader. He is the only one with experience in government to match Hillary. He might be prone to an occasional gaff from a political point of view like tonight’s one about finding “those who could afford it.” However, it is clear that Kasich, more than any other candidate knows the executive role of weighing competing options in a political and government situation. One of his best lines was, “On the job training for President of the United States has not worked.” I also like his appreciation for good values.
Rubio has some fresh ideas that sound wise. He is very eloquent, but Rubio could be wiser in his words. He attacks Democrats more than I like and disrespects Putin. One should not call a man a “gangster” that you might be in a position to have to negotiate with someday. I like Rubio’s appreciation for traditional values. I like Rubio for VP. He would appeal to the Hispanic vote and perhaps help the party have a strong unifying candidate in the future, something they need.
I don’t see Rand Paul as a viable candidate but I like him in the debate as he is not afraid to be politically incorrect. He is very knowledgeable about money; it appears to be his focus. His debating keeps the others more honest, and he does not back down. But his libertarian views are too far off center to be electable.
Carson is a great guy but is trading on being a great guy and very likeable. Personally, I do not like flat tax ideas. I believe they are a way to put a greater burden on the middle class. His ideas do not seem to be specific enough in many areas and on foreign policy he is naïve. I admire his Christian faith. However, I continue to feel that he does not have the right experience to be President and to me it shows.
Trump says all the things that appeal to the most reactive part of the Republican base. But some of his positions are not doable – sending all illegal immigrants back for one. He plays on all our fears. He also has a huge ego, which is not a good thing in a leader. Some of what he says on economics is correct such as the imbalance of trade being a problem and the need to bring jobs and money back to our country. But he would be a terror to foreign policy. Other world leaders would distrust him and hate him. He would be the worst foreign policy president in history. Trump would also be offensive to Hispanic voters at election time. Trump is just not the most electable candidate. Trump could not get along with Congress either. Government is not like business; you have to work through people with independent agendas whose salaries you do not control. You can’t just fire them and put in a more cooperate puppet.
Cruz is very well-spoken but I think abolishing the IRS is a ridiculous idea. Such a wild tax overhaul as he suggests has no chance of success in Congress. However, he is one of the best debaters every time. He is another one who wastes no opportunity to attack Democrats. I do not like Cruz’s position on immigration. Brandishing the “amnesty” word is meaningless political posturing. He would be offensive to Hispanic voters. Cruz is the one who seems to least understand the concept that the next leader of an organization must seek to build on what has been done before. Planning to step in and make a clean sweep of everything your predecessor has done is usually stupid. In most organizations, there is too much inertia to do such a thing anyway. This is especially true in the US government.
Jeb Bush’s economics, unfortunately, sounded like traditional Republican friendliness to the wealthy. Bush does well on immigration and on foreign policy. He and Carson come across as the gentle ones in a field of aggressive types. Carson seems to be liked for it, Bush does not.
Forina is a good debater but has no government experience. In politics and foreign policy, she is naïve, for sure. She also spends way too much energy attacking Democrats rather than enunciating her positions. However, she could be right that if she were on the ticket, say in the VP spot, she might help the ticket run well against Hillary.