Live Blog: Watching the Republican Candidates Beating a Dead Horse?

Is this really only the 13th debate? It seems like about 30, doesn’t it? Do you have the stomach for it? I plan to listen on satellite radio for as long as I can stand. I figure there could be a few laughs to be had if Mitt and Newt go for each others’ throats. The only other candidate there tonight with a sliver a chance is {eeek!} Ron Paul.

The debate will be on Fox News at 9PM. Here’s how Fox sees it: Gingrich Faces Off Against GOP Field at Iowa Debate

Newt Gingrich enters the high-stakes debate in Iowa Thursday night with a political target on his back, as Mitt Romney and the rest of the Republican presidential candidates look to challenge his front-runner status ahead of the Iowa caucuses.

Gingrich, for his part, is vowing to stay positive.

On the day of the debate, his campaign aired a new Iowa ad that claimed his candidacy embodies “bold ideas and new solutions” for the country.

“Others seem to be more focused on attacks rather than moving the country forward. That’s up to them,” Gingrich said in the ad.

We’ll see how long it takes for Mr. Nasty to lash out at someone. Any bets? You can watch the live stream of the debate at
The coverage actually starts at 8:30PM.

Rasmussen Reports had a new poll out today with Romney taking the lead in Iowa, 23%, to Gingrich’s 20% and Paul’s 18%. So it appears that Romney still has a chance.

Business Insider says tonight’s debate is “HUGE.”

After a rollercoaster shadow primary, the stakes could not be higher this evening. With Newt Gingrich’s lead evaporating, the Iowa race is still anybody’s game. This debate is the candidates’ last chance to make an impression on voters before they hunker down for the holidays. A breakout performance — or major gaffe — tonight could actually make or break a campaign.

They ask: “Can Newt take the heat?” “Will the Mitt-bot self-destruct?” “Can Rick Perry hold it together?” “Will Ron Paul be a factor?” Plus they suggest that Jon Huntsman could be the next candidate to “surge.” I’ll believe that when I see it.

Chris Cillizza calls this “the kitchen sink debate,”

because you can bet any and every attack that the Republican candidates might have been keeping in their pocket will come out tonight. Why? Because it’s the last chance for Iowa voters — and voters nationally — to compare and contrast the candidates before an actual ballot is cast.

And brings up similar questions to those listed above from the Business Insider piece.

I’m ready to live blog, and home some of you will join me. I don’t know how long I’ll last, but I’ll hang in there as long as I can.

55 Comments on “Live Blog: Watching the Republican Candidates Beating a Dead Horse?”

  1. bostonboomer says:

    So far the Fox live stream isn’t working too well. It keeps freezing up, at least for me. So I guess I’ll stick with the radio.

  2. bostonboomer says:

    OK, it’s starting. This is the first debate ever to take place in Sioux City. Big Whoop.

    Introducing the candidates. Romney gets a good hand, Gingrich better, and Ron Paul best.

  3. bostonboomer says:

    Chris Wallace will moderate. After he said Ron Paul winning would be a joke, basically.

  4. bostonboomer says:

    Gingrich is asked about the doubts about his electability.

    Newt responds by wishing everyone a “merry christmas.”

  5. bostonboomer says:

    Newt compares himself to Reagan and says Reagan didn’t care about electability. He was the best debater….or something.

  6. bostonboomer says:

    Now Newt is listing his “accomplishments.” A bunch of stuff that happened while he was in Congress but didn’t have that much to do with.

  7. bostonboomer says:

    He created the balanced budget, and the Republican majority in Congress.

  8. bostonboomer says:

    Another question about Ron Paul’s electability and will he pledge to support whoever wins. Paul says anyone on the stage could beat Obama.

    He emphasizes the Constitution and freedom. That will bring some Dems and Independents over. We must balance the budget. He’ll cut $1 trillion the first year.

  9. bostonboomer says:

    Rick Santorum asked why he’s spent more time than anyone in Iowa but he can’t get any support. His response isn’t really on point, but whatever. He has no shot.

  10. bostonboomer says:

    Chris Wallace to Romney: People think Newt will be tougher than you against Obama. Why would you be better?

    Mitt: People are really hurting, middle class is suffering, need a president who will get American right again. I spent my career in the private sector. Lists his business enterprises. He can get the economy moving and Obama can’t

  11. bostonboomer says:

    Wallace asks Bachmann how she can attract independents. How will she counter Obama’s efforts to cast her as too conservative?

    She’s an action person, she’s worked very hard in Congress. She spend 50 years as a real person and 5 years in Congress going toe-to-toe with Obama. Except Bush was pres. when she was elected.

    • She spend 50 years as a real person and 5 years in Congress going toe-to-toe with Obama.

      Wow… she says that as a good thing? Lol. She’s 55 isn’t she? So for 5 years she’s been an unreal person?

  12. bostonboomer says:

    Rick Perry asked how he can debate Obama when he’s done so badly in the debates.

    Perry says he’s getting to like the debates. He wants a part-time Congress, balanced budget amendment. Compares himself to Tim Tebow. He will be the Tim Tebow of the Iowa Caucuses. Mild applause.

  13. bostonboomer says:

    Why won’t Huntsman sign the no tax pledge? Huntsman says he won’t sign silly pledges or show up at a Donald Trump debate. He will address the deficit and the trust deficit. He will tell Congress they need term limits, deal with K Street and Wall St.

  14. bostonboomer says:

    Santorum: We need a president who believes in the American people, bottom up, free markets for free people.

  15. bostonboomer says:

    Perry says Obama wasn’t ready to be president, on-the-job training. Perry won’t have the problem because he’s been Gov. of TX.


  16. bostonboomer says:

    Mitt. I know how to lead. I’ve had four leadership experiences. I know how to do it.

    Newt says leadership is key. Obama is a radical, too busy running around the country and the world to lead.

  17. bostonboomer says:

    Ron Paul: We have to cut spending. One faction wants welfare, the other wants warfare.

  18. bostonboomer says:

    Bachmann says all of congress should have been called to DC last summer and told no new taxes and follow the constitution. We have to stop adding to the deficit. Reform right now.

  19. bostonboomer says:

    Asking people to tweet #answer or #dodge depending on if you like the answer or the candidate is avoiding the issue.

    taking break. Me too.

  20. bostonboomer says:

    Wallace asks Newt how he could criticize Barney Frank over Fannie and Freddie when he (Newt) was taking big buck from them. He says, he was a private citizen and doing just a regular old job. Plus he’s helped people get housing somehow. I didn’t follow the explanation.

  21. bostonboomer says:

    Paul says Newt was involved in something that was a mixture of government and business–which could be come fascism.

    Not sure WTF he’s saying. But Newt shouldn’t have gotten money from them. It’s not a free-mkt enterprise.

    Newt says government sponsored enterprises do a lot of good. Isn’t that sacrilege for a Repub?

    Claims he did no lobbying.

  22. bostonboomer says:

    Bachmann is shocked listening to Newt compare Freddie and Fannie to credit unions.

    • bostonboomer says:

      Freddie and Fannie need to be shut down.

      Newt says none of what Bachmann said is true. He never lobbied, bla bla bla

  23. bostonboomer says:

    I don’t know how much more I can take from Newt. Good grief–it’s only been 1/2 hour!

  24. bostonboomer says:

    Newt wants judged to be called to testify before Congress about controversial decisions. This is based on the court that said “under god” should be in the pledge of allegience. That was reversed tho. Bachmann agrees with Gingrich that we have a dictatorship of courts.

    • peggysue22 says:

      You out here by yourself, BB? :0) I just turned it on–Huntsman is giving a reasonable, thoughtful answer on weighing environmental concerns to jobs. Bachmann is giving a standard Republican [Drill Baby, Drill] answer on drilling [in the Gulf] and the Keystone pipeline. Yeah, let’s pretend this pipeline is all about jobs [not really, even the Canadian Co has admitted that] and that this particular pipeline will be carrying sweet crude [not]. Tar sand oil is dirty and extremely toxic and sorry, these oil companies have a lousy, lousy record for safety and leaks. I’m not a Luddite either. We do need a transition energy source [coal, oil, nuclear, whatever] before we’re ready for alternate energy sources. But come on!

      The question should be: are we willing to risk the world’s Bread Basket and a major aquifer so some oil CEO’s and investors can make a quick buck? If an accident occurs? They won’t pay; the rest of us will.

      • bostonboomer says:

        I couldn’t handle it alone, Peggy Sue. I thought I could last at least an hour, but it was just way too much of Newt for me to deal with.

  25. peggysue22 says:

    Romney on immigration–ID cards and company sanctions on employers hiring illegals. We won’t round people up but if they want to work they must have legal ID. Otherwise, they’re out.

    Gingrich on immigration: a wall, fines on states sponsoring ‘sanctuary cities.’

    Huntsman again. Deal with the border, straighten out the whole immigration policy but don’t forget that immigrants [legal] are of an intrinsic value to the US. Rather vague but a reasoned answer.

    Mittens professing his stand on gay rights, abortion and guns. That’s the traditional wedge issue for all Republicans. Pule-e-ese!

    This is same old, same old. They’re all getting overtime beeps.

    • The rerun of the debate is on in the background… I keep hearing all the overtime beeps. They sound pretty cheesy. I thought it was an alert on my cell phone or computer at first.

  26. peggysue22 says:

    I was going to say I’m done but there’s only 15 minutes left. Santorum tries to bash Romney on gay marriage. Romney answering. He believes in traditional marriage.

    Bachmann answering a question on ‘life at fertilization’ and how absolutely crucial it is to ‘real’ Republicans. Again, the wedge issues become larger than anything else. Accuses Gingrich of being wishy-washy on the issue. He has a rebuttal, saying Bachmann doesn’t have her facts right. Bachmann comes right back and insists she is a serious person for POTUS. Gingrich gets the last word.

    Next question on Reagan’s 11th Commandment: Thou shall not speak ill of another Republican.


  27. northwestrain says:

    Thanks to both of you — I’m still sane.

  28. quixote says:

    I don’t know, I can’t even imagine, how you folks can stomach listening to that claptrap, but thanks for doing it and giving us the Cliff Notes version.

    Does anybody know what the Repubs big idea is with scheduling thrice-weekly blatherfests? Everybody, not just us, is making fun of it at this point, and they’re not even halfway through.

  29. Oh my, why are you two torturing yourselves? I wish I could send you some of the brownies I made last night. I can’t sit through these awful GOP debates. It’s like they speak a foreign language or something.

    • ralphb says:

      Foreign language, maybe Stupidican?

    • peggysue22 says:

      You know why, Wonk? Because when I’m debating these loons in person or on the blogs I don’t want them coming back and saying “that’s just a knee-jerk comment from a LIbtard. You don’t know what [fill in loon’s name] thinks or says or yada, yada.

      That being said? Listening to the blather is tough going. I’d rather eat Brussel sprouts :0).

  30. ralphb says:

    tbogg If Newt were married to Bachmann he would so be divorcing her right now. Really. He wouldn’t even wait for the cancer diagnosis

    Heh 🙂

  31. BB: Love the cartoon!

  32. Pat Johnson says:

    Who says fascism is dead?

    Newt wants to abolish courts that do not agree with his narrow views and bring judges before congress to answer questions regarding their rulings. Like in the good old days of the Nuremberg Trials?

    And Michele wants an amendment recognizing dots on the head of a pin as “persons”.

    With the exception of Ron Paul, let’s bomb every country who has ever looked cross eyed at us and prefers we take our military bases and get the hell out of their backyard.

    Yep, these idiots would have us funding every GSE filled to the brim with their donors but defund the lower and middle class by going so far as to deny them heat in the winter.

    What a slate of losers. Forcing a woman to bear a child against her will then forcing her to attend “adoption seminars” is one of the most egregious statements to ever fall out of a mouth running for president.

    I can’ begin to describe how repugnant these people are with accuracy. They just are.

  33. Minkoff Minx says:

    Wow, I can’t believe you all went through this torture…so glad I missed it. What is this crap about Perry being the Tim Tebow of Iowa?

    Well, at least my night was enjoyable. The chorus was wonderful. At one point, all 250 plus members (that is grades 6th through 12th) were up there singing Carol of the Bells.

  34. Just saw this on NPR: Christopher Hitchens has died.

  35. Glenn McGahee says:

    Does it really matter what was said in the debates? Next, we wait for the media to declare the next darling/frontrunner and people will be swayed to poll in that yea, thats their choice now. It all depends on what the media angle becomes. Thats why any slip or statement becomes fodder for the press so we hear the same things and questions over and over. I haven’t watched one debate. Why bother. Seems the good people of Iowa can be swayed so easily. Why Iowa anyway? Can’t we come up with a better, more reliable way to choose a candidate?
    In the meantime, answer me this, have any questions asked specifically about the Gulf Oil Spill or anything specific rather than the god, guns and abortion?
    For example: