Newt Gingrich and Ron Paul both did exceptionally well. Newt Gingrich was best prepared intellectually, Ron Paul was the best prepared ideologically. Both candidates were entirely comfortable and confident in their responses to some tough questions. They both graded out as As. Cain received a B grade. Michele Bachmann and Romney received a C grade, though I still feel she is the best overall candidate in the race. Bachmann didn’t seem as sharp as I expected and her answers were not as comprehensive as Paul’s or Gingrich’s. I still don’t trust anything that Romney says. It is hard to be objective with a person who seems to be totally unprincipled and who flip flops on the issues. Somehow I think he would appoint another Sandra Day O’Conner to the US Supreme Court despite his rhetoric to the contrary.
I would have liked to see Governor Rick Perry involved in this debate, since we have not had opportunity to watch him in any of the previous debates, because of his recent entry into the race. Why Senator Santorum, Governors Huntsman and Johnson or Congressman McCotter where not in the debate I’m not sure. Maybe because they were polling so low and there was not enough time for the debate format to include all the announced candidates.
Ron Paul emphasized the need for sound money, which was a theme that wove through all of his responses. Herman Cain wove his basic canned campaign themes into his answers. He was well organized and well-spoken. Regarding illegal aliens, Cain wanted a100% secure border, regarding keeping out both law-breaking people and illegal drugs. Michele Bachmann said that making profit was a good thing.
For my money, the “winner” of the debate was a tie between Gingrich and Paul. I am beginning to agree more and more with Paul’s foreign policy of getting out of foreign entanglements and alliances. However, I don’t think we should close all of our foreign bases. Maybe most should be evaluated, and reduced but not totally eliminated. We need to have strategically placed presence in order to respond to situations that advance our national security.
I don’t agree that any of the five would be better than Obama. Certainly Romney would be Obama-lite and like I said before I could not trust him to remain true to conservative principles, which I wonder if he even hold any apart from the political necessity to do so. He would be another unacceptable RINO in the John McCain mold. I still have my doubts about Gingrich, but he sure is persuasive with his response regarding his seeking God’s involvement in his decision-making. But did he say that for the audience’s sake?