A New Stage but a Familiar Donald Trump: The Brawler

As became clear within minutes, there would be no new Donald Trump taking the stage at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library on Wednesday night.

Comments: 187

  1. Except for that ONE DAY.

  2. Clinton administration could have arrested or killed Bill laden, but they could not do it.

  3. Heard of Hurricane Katrina? our men and women who gave their lives, limbs and minds for the wholly untruthful adventure that continues to be what is left of Iraq?

  4. Trump would be better than Fiorina. What a cold hearted snake she is. Why does Jeb Bush want to put Margaret Thatcher's face on American currency. He seems to think no American woman is good enough. What a dolt!

  5. No matter how you line them up, each of them is worse than the other one.

  6. Better than what, better for what?

  7. I imagine his brain was swirling in its shell as he tried to think a woman, any woman, from US history. He could not, because he is no different from his big bro...

  8. Re: "Jeb Bush [sic] s returned Mr. Trump’s glare. 'As it relates to my brother, there’s one thing I know for sure: He kept us safe,' he said."

    Really? Allowing 9/11--probably deliberately--"kept us safe"? Inventing allegations of "weapons of mass destruction" as a clumsy pretext for invading Iraq, engendering many further successful attacks and antagonizing Muslims all over the world "kept us safe"? In what universe? By what rules of illogic? (Bill Clinton kept us safe, by the way--safe and prosperous--, and he actually thwarted an attack on the World Trade Center.) Bush II's presidency was a disaster in every way, and "Jeb Bush" (= John Ellis Bush Bush, Bush Bush for short) is telling us he would endeavor to make his own presidency just as horrendous.

  9. You forget the 1993 World Trade center bombing evidently. Only luck saved that tower.

  10. You have to give Trump credit for not making the obvious response to Jeb's claim that his brother kept us safe.

  11. It is obvious the NYT's wants to bring Trump down in the polls. None of the GOP's candidates have any policies published and none of them says anything close to sane on foreign policy. Jeb! claims his brother kept us safe, except for 9/11 and a collapsed financial, banking and housing markets that eroded our life savings? Oh yeah and two unfunded wars for our kids to come home in body bags from? The debate moderators had asked the audience not to applaud but our ace analyst here judges the response of the audience by applause- which is just strange. Sure there were a few outbursts of clapping, like when Jeb! lied about W, but I bet those were planned. Trump sounds as sane as any of the weird crackpots, none of them are fit to serve as president obviously.

  12. When Jeb Bush claimed his brother kept us safe, Trump could have done permanent damage by noting that thousands of Americans died on Sept. 11, in Hurricane Katrina and on the battlefields of Iraq.

    Mr. Trump may be brash but he's not quick enough of his feet.

  13. Yes, the "progressive" democrats blame Bush for everything, even 8 years after his administration ended. Put your heads back in the sand, that's where they continue to belong.

  14. New stage? No, same old "conservative" talking points. No real discussion of race relations, no discussion of the GOP/radical religious right attacks on women, no discussion of the financial meltdown and subsequent bailout of BIG banks with no strings attached, thanks to George Bush, Jr. They all promote WAR when the vast majority of Americans oppose it and do not want to be the police of the world. The only debate worth watching will be one hosted by C-Span hosted by a progressive and a conservative highly qualified hosts with an equal number of republican and democratic candidates and sincere independent candidates. The rest is just totally engineered reality tv at it's worst.

  15. Though amusing on some level the sad truth of last night's debate is how backwards it revealed the Republican mind-set to be, represented by an astonishingly ignorant and biased group of individuals, doctors and businessmen included, who seem to wallow in the Dark Ages and who view our current President, some of them literally, as Satan. Quite terrifying really.

  16. Seems like everyone thinks their favorite candidate won the debate. Wishful thinking all the way around. Meanwhile wait for the next round of polls.

  17. Carly Fiorina is a shameless liar. These are the words that came out of her mouth last night: "Watch a fully formed fetus on the table, its heart beating, its legs kicking, while someone says, 'We have to keep this alive to harvest its brain.'"

    This only happened in her imagination, but I guess some people will believe any smear as long as it's directed against what they perceive as the "other side". I'm beginning to believe Trump when he said he was referring to her demeanor when he insulted her recently.

  18. Trump was one of the more moderate "debaters" last night as most of the GOP field tried to show that they are even more radical, more extreme, and in some cases more crazy than Trump. Fiorina really scares me, she is the female equivalent of Chaney, ready to start another war, and completely without empathy or other positive feelings for fellow human beings. It was a frightening spectacle and it does not bode well for the future of our country.

  19. As someone on these boards put it, imho so aptly, Ms. Fiorina is Margaret Thatcher on meth.

    While I do believe Trump was vile to comment on her appearance, I cannot believe that women will actually vote for this woman.

    Why do none of the people affected by her brilliant management skills (aka, the 30,000 or so that she laid off) come forward and talk about the consequences of her supposedly tough minded action. Of the golden parachute she received when she left after running the company into the ground while laying them off and devastating their families?

    And why does the NYT seem to promote the idea that because she "sounded articulate" compared to the men on stage that that means she is qualified to run our country? that she is the "winner" of the debate," that she is the one person who "stood out." Sure for her debating style but what about her actual ideas, plans and positions?

    Comes back to Mrs. Thatcher on meth.

  20. Trump was the only candidate on the stage that did not seem to want to go to war with the rest of the world. Unlike all the other candidates, at least he knew when to keep his mouth shut.

    And Bullfeathers to Jeb Bush for his brother keeping us safe. W created the whole mess we and the Middle East are in now.

  21. Agreed. Never mind that there was one notable exception to Jeb's brother "keeping us safe": 9/11 itself, which occurred 36 days after the CIA told him "Bin Laden Determined To Strike in US" and he went back to clearing brush on his Crawford, TX ranch.

  22. Did you watch the debate? The strongest comment against war was not from Trump but from Rand Paul. Ben Carson also was milder than the others. Of the candidates, my number one was Paul, although I would never vote for a Republican, under any circumstances. But you should have watched the debate before commenting, IMO.

  23. You, sir, are correct regarding George W. Bush and his warmongering, genocidal advisers making the world vastly more dangerous.
    The entire thuggish Bush family should be tarred and feathered and run out of town. What a narcissistic, self-serving bunch of thieves. And the mother is the worst. Appearances can certainly be deceiving!

  24. Kasich had it right, even early on - viewers should have switched off the content-less "debate"; nothing happened later to change things. Matters of interest to ordinary people and constructive ideas were notably absent, apart from flip references to "entitlements" (cut them) and health care (repeal every word of Obamacare). And of course, solutions of any kind were absent, other than a couple of voodoo tax reform ideas that would supposedly revive the economy and create jobs - but above all help the wealthy at the expense of the rest of us. Fiorina wants to up military spending and cut taxes but a somehow wants to spend on antidrug programs but (typically of Republicans) only because she her family has been affected.

    Nagourney's reporting to be useful would have described just how content-free the debate was, and what was missing that should have been there.

  25. I must disagree, there were bits of real disagreement that helped to shed light on some of the candidates. To cite just one example, Dr. Paul bravely took a stand for legalization of marijuana (the "Colorado" approach, hey, what about my state?) and pointed out that those (apparently all the others on the stage) who support the 30-year old federal war on drugs are betraying their conservative "state's rights" positions. And his exchange with Bush perfectly illustrated his point that the drug laws are not evenly enforced -- Jeb Bush, the privileged son of a powerful man, smoked pot with no consequences, whereas countless young African-Americans now have criminal records and are handicapped in the job market for the same conduct.

  26. And so the plot thickens! How can a nation known world-wide for the quality and innovation of its science and technology research, for its generations of generous acceptance of new immigrants from afar, for a striving for tolerance and a desire for fee speech, sink so low? Can we seriously be considering that a man who doesn't care if what he says is true, as long as he says it loudly, whose only claim is that he made a lot of money, who clearly judges people by how they look and not for other qualities? Surely this has gone on long enough! The man is a ruthless, dishonest boor and bully. He is made to look outspoken by the reflexively craven nature of his fellow politicians. Do we really want a not very smart loud-mouth representing us among the nations of the world. Can we really survive a man of notoriously little principle and little control making important decisions for the nation? This presidential campaign is awful!

  27. Well, it's starting to happen. Trump wasn't as bombastic or appealing in this second debate as in the first one. Unless he starts to change his game, this is how it ends for him. He can't rely on the same tricks, expecting that hitting others, showing out-of-this-world energy and ego, and getting by promising "more of everything", will do from now on. Unless he has the capacity to change, and show a more presidential attitude along with more specific proposals, he will cede the stage to Bush (as the centrist, electable candidate), or to a worse construct than Trump (Fiorina) than will leave many saying be careful with what you wish.

  28. JEB! He said it before and again last night:

    "Jeb Bush returned Mr. Trump’s glare. 'As it relates to my brother, there’s one thing I know for sure: He kept us safe,' he said."

    And yet, and yet.... 9/11 happened when Bush was president, possibly, partly, because he and his staff did not pay attention to the extremely dire CIA warnings in July. He disregarded the warnings completely and took off the entire month of August 2000 to vacation at the ranch! DID NOTHING. And thousands were NOT "safe."

    WHY DON'T THEY CALL HIM ON THIS?

  29. To listen to these pundits, you'd think they had never been through an election cycle before.

    Trump has had a remarkable run, but it based almost entirely on saying things no one else would dare to say: that he would try to deport 10 million illegal aliens (although he doesn't have a clue as to how he would do it), that some women are not as physically beautiful as others and that people he doesn't like are "pathetic losers."

    But it is also a campaign filled with vagueness -- that he would "get along" with Putin, as though no one else ever considered this approach. His grasp of issues is tenuous. Last night, he showed no growth since his previous appearance, patronizingly dismissing the sole female candidate's looks and going after the foreign born wife of another candidate -- a person from the very cultural background that the Republicans desperately need to cultivate.

    In the end, people don’t like bullies. As uninformed as voters can sometimes be, they recognize that Trump can’t get along with others and that gridlock will be worse than ever. At the end of the day, they don’t want a buffoon to represent them on the international stage.

    That commentators (and even other candidates) treat this seriously reflects on their ability to grasp the phenomenon for what it is.

    If Trump were riding this high in September a year from now, this would be a story. Right now, it is nothing more than a "pathetic" entertainment spectacle.

  30. Jeb' s brother hardly kept us safe. Funny how some of us ignore 9-11.

  31. But one item of note for our two "business people" candidates...

    ...Trump and Fiorina. We know his background and bluster.

    But after last night, I dug into ol' Carly's career. How is she even running??

    While "head of sales" at Lucent she presided over billions in sales, whereby, they did seller-financing to completely credit unworthy firms that were severely over-leveraged by any standard. Then, they bought Lucent product.

    OK, business is business, seller financing to customers buying your product. But then she skipped out of Lucent to HP, and Lucent totally imploded on the basis of these sales-financings she oversaw. Lucent tanked.

    Then she goes to HP, begins negotiating to buy PWC for $18 Billion (later sold to IBM for $3.5 B three years later, a real price) - - botches that deal, and instead doubles-down on computer hardware when the entire market is moving to services-software. Buys Compaq for gazillions...

    Boom! That implodes HP, and she gets given her walking papers, fired. Stock value collapses more than 50%, 30,000 folks get laid-off, the "HP Way" as a customer service/innovation model is cratered, and Carly walks with more than $100M in signing-bonus and golden parachute...

    Now she is running for POTUS on her accomplishments?!?

    I'm an Independent/Democrat, but for my money, the only GOP candidates with anything resembling the necessary maturity and leadership skills seems to me to be Kasich or Carson. The rest of their field is bilage, weak. SF

  32. The only benefit that Donald Trump's candidacy has for us (voting and interested Americans, that is) is that he has all but rendered Jeb! impotent. When the former Florida governor can, with a straight face, look at the audience and say "my brother kept us safe" on September 11, 2001, we all need to understand that Jeb! is cognitive dissonance walking. I recall falling on my knees as I watched American citizens throwing themselves out of the towers that had become incinerators on 9/11, a most desperate and unsafe act. Jeb!'s brother was, if memory serves, the president at the time, the same president who went on holiday to Crawford after reading top secret intercepts that told him that an attack on American shores was not only possible, but imminent (less than a month away). Safe, indeed. Oh, and the suggestion to adorn a new $10 bill with the stern and craggy face of a foreign politician? The guess here is that Jeb! prefers not to consider American women who have made positive and lasting contributions to this country's growth and character such as abolitionists, agitators for social and moral change, or pioneers in flight (Amelia Earhart, Sally Ride, Christa McAuliffe). No, Jeb!, American women are so unworthy of your notice. Thank you, Mr. Trump, for elbowing this back-number off the stage.

  33. Has anyone noted the problem with Jeb Bush's statement that his brother kept us safe -- i.e., the attack on 9/11?

  34. Setting Trump aside (and that's a big set aside) - there was a extremely robust and diverse range of viewpoints expressed yesterday.

    The GOP is fortunate to have so many strong candidates.

  35. What debate did you watch or listen to? They were the biggest bunch of losers that I have ever heard. Embarrassing and bullying behavior will not get us the respect of the world.

  36. Surely you jest.

    These "strong candidates" were talking about ending birthright citizenship, attacking the separation of church and state, imposing their religious views on the rest of us.

    They told lies about vaccines. They lied about Planned Parenthood which they was to defund, thus depriving millions of Americans of health and reproductive care including contraceptives and cancer screenings.

    They want to destroy the ACA, which would leave millions of Americans without health insurance.

    They promise to tear up the Iran agreement on Day #1, which must make the rest of the incredibly nervous. Can the US no longer be trusted?

    They want to expel 11 million people including natural born American citizens. They refuse to address minimum wage issues and think it's fine to keep poor workers toiling in the fields for little pay, no benefits and no pathway to citizens. Hmmmm. This sounds an awful lot like the plantation to me.

    They conveniently blame Obama for 9/11 and the tax cuts and unfunded wars that wiped out Clinton's budget surpluses and contributed to the financial meltdown that has harmed America, wiped some of us out altogether.

    I ask you - are you serious?

  37. Are you trying to be funny?

  38. The next time an opponent attacks Trump because he filed
    for business (not personal) bankruptcy relief several times,
    Trump should turn it around by saying that a good executive
    needs to be able to recognize when a venture is failing and
    the smartest course of action is to bail out in order to limit the
    losses.

    I want a President who is smart, honest and courageous enough
    to know when to hold them and when to fold them. And isn't afraid
    to admit a policy isn't working and needs to be changed.

    If more Presidents were willing to do this, we might have avoided
    the fiascoes in Vietnam, Iraq and Afghanistan that have occurred.

  39. The president can fold them when they get congressional approval. The trick is to prevent getting into lost causes in the first place, not to know when to get out, which can take congress decades.

    Nice thought, but not really relevant to national politics.

  40. I didn't watch the GOP debate but from what I understand Trump blew an easy opportunity to wipe out Fiorina. When asked about her face he just tried to get by with "she looks beautiful". He should have said she would have looked good if she didn't screw up her face into that of an efficiency hatchet woman. She cut 30,000 jobs at the company she took over and, instead of using a scalpel like Dr. Carson, she used a meat cleaver. Turned out for all her looking cold blooded and efficient what she did was the opposite of that. She harmed that company so badly she was fired for incompetence. There's a saying in corporate America. People can rise up in an organization, but at some point they can reach their level of incompetence. And, that pretty much sums up Ms. Fiorina.

  41. Trump -- hero of the stupid. The stupid who listen to his drivel about vaccines being harmful. The freak is a germophobe - he's literally afraid of ANY germ touching him. People should be more concerned about catching "stupid" from an overdose of him in the media.

  42. This whole charade has been amusing. But it's only a matter of time before we hear this:

    ``I can't take this; I'm out. This whole thing is for losers. The people love me; I'm a lovable guy. The polls, some anyway, say I'm still No. 1. But the system is rigged, it's for the Rand Pauls of the world. I'm a leader; I'm a builder. What am I worth? $10 billion? I tried, I really did. And the people wanted me. But I can't talk about a woman's face. I can't talk about vaccines. What is this, Russia? And I know Putin is loving this day. The one guy he doesn't want to face is leaving the race. But I have to. This is for losers. I'm no loser. But mark my words, my phone is going to ring and it's going to be one of these second-raters. And you know what they'll want: My money, my advice, my skill. But I'm going to let them hang in the wind. I'll make American great again my way. Just like I made myself great.''

  43. Mr. Trump did not perform well in the second debate. In particular, when asked to give specifics of how he was going to accomplish some of his ideas (e.g., the deportation of millions of illegal aliens) he resorted to generalities and clearly could not provide, in most cases, even a rudimentary answer. After the first hour of the debate, I grew tired of listening to Mr. Trump. On the other hand, Ms. Fiorina started out strongly, but after a while her continua,l one dimensional, strident tone, became tiresome and predictable. Mr. Rubio also tried very hard to project strength by speaking forcefully, but like Ms. Fiorina, after a while this tactic produced simplistic responses. For me, the biggest surprise was the performance of Mr. Paul - even though I disagree with almost everything he said, I was impressed with his thoughtfulness, clarity and rationality. It should be quite interesting to see how the candidates will adjust their strategies in the next debate.

  44. No surprises here. The Donald's campaign has not been about a competition of ideas or even a distinct plan through which America becomes terrific. This is all about him and his ego. Hence, his idea that getting along with powerful figures as a businessman will make world leaders respect him. Hence, the petty swipes at those who question him (literally including one moderator) and the preoccupation with whether others will 'treat him nicely.' He even seemed pleased about the ironic reference to having called Jeb! low energy. All these motions, for him, are an opportunity to stroke his pride.

  45. Unless GOP has someone like Jon Huntsman, Jr. running for President, the party is toast, intellectually, and in so many other ways...

    And if this batch of people on the stage in Simi Valley yesterday is the best the GOP can produce from a nation of 318+ million people, GOP should just register itself as a local town club of some cranky people discussing antique notions amongst themselves, and retire from this national political party business.

  46. Journalists should stop taking the easy road and comparing Trump to candidates like Bernie Sanders, Howard Dean and even Ross Perot. They are not at all alike. Trump is an entertainer, a performer without a serious thought in his head. Journalists brandish this word "populism" to cover them all. I want one of them just once to explain what they mean by it.

  47. I don't agree with everything Trump says or his sometimes outrageous behavior, but I do think he would make a very strong leader which is something we need at this time. I also agree with his ideas for the tax code and for that reason I hope he is the nominee.

  48. We don't need a name calling bully for a leader. It wouldn't do much good except fan the flames if he started using negative nick names for Putin and the Korean leader in a difficult situation.

  49. Sure, lets vote for Clinton and "wait until after the election" to watch her reset U.S./Russian relations.

  50. Translation, "I don't watch or read any real news."

  51. The commentator asked trump how he was planning to pay to deport 11 million people
    He simply did not answer,
    Nuff said.

  52. Trump seems to be doing his job beautifully, distracting all of you in the media from the fang-baring right wing extremism of the rest of the dais. Nothing to see here but an orange-haired clown; pay no attention to the war mongers, hate mongers, liars and Christian Taliban leaders arrayed on either side of him.

  53. How can Jeb Bush say of his brother's Presidency, "he kept us safe"? Didn't 9/11 occur on his brother's watch? And that wasn't out of the blue. We had a couple of warnings in the 90's during Bill Clinton's watch. George W. Bush most definitely did NOT keep us safe.

  54. It is simply not true that George W. Bush "kept us safe." That line by his brother, John-Ellis Bush (his real name) will not hold up. Everyone remember's 9/11. Everyone remembers the August memo and the Bush family's closeness to the Bin Ladens, both before and after 9/11. Everyone knows all about the vets who came back in pieces or not at all from one war fought under false pretences, with abysmally poor planning, and another war fought with minimalism (because of the other war). Everyone remembers Scooter Libby; also the missing gazillions that were supposed to be for the reconstruction of Iraq -- an Iraq that today is still a massive wreck. Whether you like him or not -- I didn't at first, but then I started listening to what he says, however idiosyncratically he says -- Donald J. Trump is correct on the substance. Between the two of them, on the advice of their closest aides, both Bush and Obama bear the huge burden of responsibility for the costly catastrophe currently consuming so much of the Middle East. Trump is right about the Iran 'deal,' too. Mocking him on TV won't change those facts.

  55. The Bushes were so tight with the Saudis that Prince Bandahr was called Bandahr Bush; and it was Prince Bandahr that persuaded Boi George to fly the Saudis and Bin Ladens out of the US on 9/12/2001.

  56. You are right about the Iraq War. You are wrong about Trump. He is a complete fake who couldn't tell a Kurd from a whey, or a Shiite from a Sunni. The man is ignorant to his bones.

  57. This article is under Politics/News Analysis. Get that? News Analysis.

    You can search the NYT over today and nowhere will you find a clear cut statement saying that nothing said by the GOP clowns wishing to be President had any basis in reality. Is it too much to ask for the NYT to point out bald-faced lies? Really? Too much to ask?

    What does Nagourney, Peters, Baker, Shear, etc. think their job is? Seriously, what do they think it is?

  58. Once again the press attacks Trump, NYT included. All of the others and especially Fiorina were the ones to fear as president not Trump. Just because they had packaged speeches about Putin does not mean that their answers made any sense. We do not want more wars and modern war isn't about the size of your troops and number of navy ships. Trump had the right answer - work it out - don't just rely on your testosterone (real or imagined). And I was appalled when Jeb said George W "kept us safe". Has there ever been a worse terrorist attack on the US than 9/11? Do we forget so quickly that it was on George's watch? I hope that statement haunts Jeb too.

  59. Of the several egomaniacs on stage for the GOP comedy show last night, it was clear that the two contenders who are polling highest are the least informed, know less about the facts that relate to any issue that was discussed, speak glibly and unintelligently about whatever vision they might have of the future, and no understanding that Congress, not the President, has a role -- often determinative -- on what they would do on day one. At the top of the list of this confederation of dunces is Donald Trump, a bully, a mud-slinging dirt bag who appeals to the under-educated couch potatoes whom the GOP didn't expect to throw weight behind someone who appeals to their basest instincts. None of the other 10 had the spine to tell him to shut up. Not one of the 11 took note that Congress has been controlled by Republicans for the last 2 years, and hasn't presented a tax bill, an immigration bill, or a bill on any other subject that these third rate politicians find fault with Obama for not acting on. All 11 are seeking the support of perhaps 20 percent of the voting public, pandering to the minority of that public that was politically conscious when Ronald Reagan was in office and ignoring those who don't have a clue what he stood for. The GOP is dead: its mid-20th century standard bearers, Rockefeller, Goldwater, Dirksen who stood for something, even if unpopular, are turning in their graves.

  60. Last night’s Real Housewives of Reagan County episode was chock full of insult throwing, finger pointing and puckermouth rage. Let’s recap:
    Rubio jokes that it’s so dry in California, they should change the bear on the state flag to a camel. (crickets.)
    Huckabee calls Trump the Mr. T of the GOP candidate A-Team.
    Rand begs Donald to stop calling him names. Donald replies, “I didn’t call you names, you’re just ugly.”
    Rand rats out the A-Team for smoking pot.
    Someone suggests Walker appeared to debate but no one was sure.
    Fiorina reveals that if she kisses Trump, she’ll turn back into a green ogre. Trump, still in orange, warms up to her, saying, “You’re still beautiful to me.”
    Huckabee huffs that Iranians need more toilet paper.
    Rubio and Donald clearly aren’t speaking the same language as Rubio pulls out a crayon drawing to show his brain is bigger than Donald’s. That’s when super testy Jeb blurts out of nowhere, “My brother kept us safe!”
    Chris threatens to shut down the NJ bridge to block Hillary, who wasn’t invited to the taping.
    Trump later announces that he’d fire Fiona as his “Secretary” while Huckabee says he’d put her face on the $1 bill so she could spend her own money.
    Carson yells in disgust: “That’s not what I said!”
    Then Huckabee articulates what everyone was thinking: “The most dangerous person in any room is the person who doesn’t know what he doesn’t know.”
    We can’t wait for the next episode.

  61. The romance between Donald Trump and Donald Trump will live as one of the great love affairs in our political history.

  62. Pity poor JEB! who actually believes that his brother GWBush "kept us safe" when he was President! And can you believe that the "well-heeled" Republican audience at the Gipper Library in Simi Valley actually gave JEB! a big hand for that lie? Sock-puppets, all 15 of the Republican Tea Party wannabe POTUS
    contenders in their Dancing With The Stars political debate last night.

  63. If Jed Bush can say that his brother kept us safe after 9/11 and his terrifying wars that killed so many, Americans included, then I guess the Democrats can say about Obama that he really kept us safe. What a ridiculous thing for Bush to have said, and how ridiculous that no one hit him on it.

    And although Firoria was better at talking fast and throwing in facts than the other (even the lies sounded credible), I agree with the person here who talked of her demeanor as snake-like. She, Cruz, and Hucklebee were the least likable people on that stage. If people think Clinton is not likable, what would the Republicans do with Fiorina.

  64. Don't worry. The Republican Party has no intention of doing anything with Fiorina. The Republican War on Women includes ALL women, even their own.

  65. I would have liked to have heard Mr. Trump explain more depth to his geopolitical outlook other than saying that he would get along with Putin and everything would be fantastic. However, just saying that he would get along very well with Putin doesn't cut it considering the widening range of Putin's attention to other countries he would like to pull into the Russian fold again and his support of Assad in Syria. What are Trump's thoughts on that?

    Probably not much thought given to geopolitics, because it requires diplomacy, compromising, and that is slow and tedious work that can't be done by hyper-energized "do it now" people. I don't think just getting along with Putin is enough.

    By the middle of the debate, when policies were being discussed, Trump seemed to be a balloon which was slowing losing its air (energy) and the deflating was obvious in the silence coming from the mouth of a man who can't stop talking otherwise.

  66. What if the Republican party has secretly orchestrated this entire "Trump as Candidate" to goad everyone? It could be a politically calculated attempt to stir up the issues and the attention of the media. This would create buzz that allows the "true" candidates to respond. Kind of like the straight man who sets up the comedian to deliver the jokes.

  67. What if...?

    Is there any doubt? What no one saw coming was the Trump success. The question is, does he hang on to his new role tenaciously, like Manuel Noriega, or step aside like he is scripted to do?

    For me, the fact that the moderator allowed Trump to speak after every comment by every other candidate is more frightening than Trump himself. Give my next door neighbor a can of beer and a microphone and he can sound like Trump. But neither Fox nor CNN have asked him to stand in the middle of a national debate and say whatever comes into his mind.

  68. Hey, interesting theory. And I bet the Trilateral Commission and the Illuminati were also in on it. Also the Rothchild family. Just after they got done planting those detonation charges on the World Trade Cetner towers, and moving their gold bars out of the underground vaults.

    Actually, though back here on planet Earth, Trump is busy nailing the last spikes into the coffin of the Republican Party. R.I.P.

  69. I wish that Walt Kelly had lived to see this day.

  70. Besides his bloated red-faced scowl, Trump insists that being a world leader is a quick study--he can get up to speed easily. This reflects the glib delusions of MBAs--who think management trumps expertise, competence, depth of knowledge or experience. It is the false triumph of lucky wealth,overestimating the merit that rewards of risky gambles that paid off actually indicate.
    Yes- there are skills to making deals and intimidating tactics in business, there is a kind of competence in navigating bankruptcy laws cleverly, bailing out of loser investments while protecting one's wealth at the expense of shareholders & employees.
    That is not the competence of a president.
    In fact- other GOP candidates seemed reasonable VP candidates; but none appeared ready to be commander-in-chief.

  71. They are all delusional. They are like characters out of a B movie. Everyone of them. The only one missing in this fictitious line up is handsome smooth talking Don Draper.

  72. Mr. Nagourney seems so eager to call Mr. Trump names that he overlooks the service Mr. Trump has provided for us all, namely: Mr. Trump has held the motley army of candidates up to the window of fresh air and let us all see what a mediocre crew most of the bunch look like. Only Bernie Sanders has the intelligence and experience of someone who is qualified to sit at the President's desk. So give Mr. Trump his due. He has given us a chance to avoid having to look at and listen to the vaperies of a Hillary, or a Jeb, or most of the others for the coming four years

  73. Couldn't agree with you more and he's entertaining us in doing so.

  74. How is it that Jeb - or anyone else - is allowed to get away with saying that George Bush kept us safe when the biggest attack ever on the continental 48 by a foreign enemy of the U.S. happened during George's watch?

  75. Almost as bad as that statement is the fact that it was applauded by the audience.

  76. What unreceivedogma says above is amazing, but sadly true. This was because the media isn't interested in facts or truth or reality. {"W" kept us safe.} What an outrage of perverse spin. And this bald-faced lie has been used before by Republicans who simply ignore facts, truth, reality. 9/11 happened on W's watch, and that will be true forever. And it will be true no matter what the next Bush or Fox News has to say about it. The fact that the statement by Jeb went unchallenged was the single most appalling moment of the entire three hour debate. What Bush did by invading the middle east is the second new reality that will not go away. The modern Republican party was created by Lewis Caroll. Last night's debate was right out of the mad hatter's tea party.

  77. I thought I'd lose my mind when hearing that remark from JEB!!! And then the thunderous applause!!! OMG hardly any 'journalists' have questioned this, to my knowledge, which I'd call verging on journalistic malfeasance.

  78. Flat tax, cut taxes, grow the military, kill Obamacare. Where are the new ideas? Not one of the eleven came to the debate with anything interesting or innovative. The only thing that will happen if any one of them is elected is that they will keep the promise they all make, "We will take our country back." Unlike Bill Murray in Groundhog Day who eventually learned from his mistakes, this lot will keep going back and continue to make the same mistakes they have made before.

  79. Too bad Jeb didn't care enough to keep America 'safe' from his mentally challenged brother George in 2000 because he apparently didn't think it was 'safe' for too many black people or Democrats to vote in the state of Florida.

    http://www.usccr.gov/pubs/vote2000/report/exesum.htm

    Statewide in Jeb Bush's 2000 Florida, black voters were nearly 10 times more likely than nonblack voters to have their ballots rejected.

    Approximately 14.4% of Florida’s 2000 black voters cast ballots that were rejected - compared with 1.6% of nonblack Florida voters who did not have their presidential votes counted.

    It looks like Jeb Bush doesn't even think democracy is a 'safe' idea.

    Jeb Bush 2016: The 'smarter', 'safer' brother.

  80. trump is an uninformed bully without a clue for any detail that makes this work. his popularity is a sad commentary on the thinking of even the few republicans that have him on top of the polls . and the polls are measuring a small group of small minded people.

  81. I was amused at Fiorina boning up on statistics to show off her newly-found knowledge. But I was terrified by the long list of arms, boats,airplanes and missiles that she wants to build. More frightening is that nearly all Republican candidates want to spend more money on the military "so people will be afraid to challenge us". Don't they know that we already spend more money for arms that ALL of the world put together?
    How can we trust these people to do anything about the economy if they are so unthinkingly profligate in their spending? Has anyone noticed the angry look on Fiorina's face when she is on the warpath. It is truly frightening but it must have been useful in the boardroom.

  82. " Don't they know that we already spend more money for arms that ALL of the world put together?"

    Not true. The next 11 countries, taken together, spend a little more than we do. The facts illustrate your point even better than hyperbole.

  83. Andy Borowitz says it right:
    "I enjoyed Fiorina's smackdown of Trump as much as anyone. But let's be honest: when the biggest moment of a debate is one candidate rebuking another for making fun of her face, we are not exactly in Lincoln-Douglas territory. http://nyr.kr/1W4Xx3t"

  84. Why is this still a headline?? Those who like him don't care. Those who think he's an idiot know who he is. Enough!! What is the purpose of the debates. It was advertised on CNN like a big wrestling match. Let's get on with electing a president.

  85. 1. George Bush took seed $$$ for Arbusto Energy and Harken Energy from Bin Laden's Brother.
    2. GHW Bush invested with the Bin Laden Family and the Saudi Royal Family in the Carlysle Group.
    3. George Bush was too busy vacation bush-hogging in Crawford to read "Bin Laden Determined to Srike America".
    4. One month later, 3,300 Americans lost their lives on 9/11/2001.
    5. GHW was at a meeting with the Bin Ladens and Saudis at Carlysle on 9/11/2001.
    6. George Bush flew the Bin Ladens and Saudis out of America on 9/12/2001.
    Kept us safer?
    I don't think so, Jeb....

  86. Jeb!? is prepared to continue Bush policies started by his brother and his cast of villains

  87. Jeb Bush apparently drinks the magic Kool-Aid that his fellow Bush family members drink. SCARY.

  88. Will some of the children pack up their toys and go home, or are we going to be subjected to so many candidates at the next Republican debate? It's nice they want to repeal Obamacare; what 's its fabulous replacement?

    I also question the flat tax proposal. A 20% tax on many middle incomes on top of school taxes, local taxes, and the various insurances we pay wouldn't leave much disposable income for necessities, let alone charitiable contributions. Am I misunderstanding something here?

  89. I just can't believe the coverage that The New York Times is giving to these Republican neanderthals. One headline today actually has the audacity to laud Fiorina by saying "she's shoring up GOP support among women". Really? She doesn't think a woman deserves the distinction to be on our currency....she couldn't come up with the name of ONE WOMAN who deserved that distinction. She erroneously attacked Planned Parenthood, whose mission is MOSTLY to help poor women deal with single motherhood and unwanted pregnancies. If SHE is the "face of the GOP's women's movement" (pun intended) then they're even worse off than I imagined. Last night was one ridiculously ignorant statement after another and I SHUDDER to think that there really are some people out there who were buying the junk that those "candidates" were selling, it's scary folks.

  90. I agree with you, and saw at least one "You go girl" directed at Fiorina from a woman on facebook. It's depressing.

  91. Respectfully, the media, including my beloved NYT, needs to spend less time parsing style and more time discussing what's being said.

    This includes some egregious lies, outright lies, attacks on the idea of progressive taxation, distortion of the First Amendment especially when it comes to "religious freedom," which to a lot of Republicans means, "freedom to oppress other people especially when it comes to women and gay people and other people's private heath care issues especially if it involves the vagina and the uterus."

    Please can we see some facts about vaccines, about these verbal assaults on birthright citizenship, about plans to deport millions of people including American citizens.

    Only Trump defended progressive taxation. I guess the GOP thinks tithing is an appropriate system to fund the country, yet, they want this huge (HUUUGGGGE) military with which they will threaten Putin, to whom they don't want to speak. Rubio and Fiorina are warmongers, full stop. At least Trump talks about making deals for pete's sake.

    Rubio and the other clowns don't seem to think America is on a planet, and that trying to ameliorate damage to the environment is too expensive. I wonder what they'll think about the expense when drought and flood and fire bring famine and war?

    We're in big trouble and we need Big Media to stop buying into this charade.

    One of America's major political parties has officially taken leave of its senses.

    You guys need to start speaking up.

  92. Could. Not. Agree. MORE. As a 42 year old highly educated man with a lot of professional skills to offer (yet I nonetheless have struggled to find meaningful work) I look around this country and wonder "What in the world happened?" How did so many people drink the magic Kool-Aid...ie the Republican line on...well, anything. We need a reality based frame of living in the world...and the GOP went off the cliff into the abyss of insanity a long time ago.

    I fear for the future of this nation. The brainwashed people need to wake up.

  93. They can start with Hillary.

  94. “I would talk to him, I would get along with him”
    Translation: "We will smoke cigars and talk about babes in the back room as we plot to our mutual benefit."

  95. Better than when Obama was caught on an open mic telling Vlad that "I only have one election left," as a way to beg Vlad's forbearance on Crimea and the Ukraine.

    We all know how Vlad took that. Especially if you are Ukrainian.

  96. After 2 debates, these candidates do not inspire me at all. In fact they are really pathetic and the only option that makes sense to me is Bernie.

  97. I just hope Trump does not finish up as president. He's so volatile and negative that who knows what he could do. It's too awful.

  98. In one way or another (responding to annberkeley2008 in part), Everyone scares me. The range of single-mindedness is broad, from ignorance, to war-mongering, to lack of diplomatic savvy, and to using this podium to grandstand with little or no credibility or plan. Last night's theatrics shows how we've possibly lost our way. GOP anyway.

  99. And I thought the pizza guy and Mitt etc, were bad last election. They now look like geniuses. What a crew.

  100. The word "war" was used hundreds of times...
    Not one word about Black Lives or demilitarizing the nation's police forces.
    They will give their lives for a single fetus, but they have no problem sending thousands off to wars designed to protect their financial interests alone.
    The one line that sums up the wellspring from which the water flows.

    "My brother kept America safe."

    Within seconds a photo of the World Trade Center at the moment of impact appeared on my Twitter feed.

  101. Going by the no boo-boo count, Trump and Rand Paul stood out. Christie did alright too but he's got the same problem as Hillary: voter fatigue, scandal-tainted. The rest, ho hum bla bla. Why does Jeb Bush always look like he's ready to burst into tears any minute? Why does Marco always sound rehearsed? Why is Carla always fixing for a fight? Take it up with the HP board lady. The plane was symbolically suggestive. If Reagan was around, he would have packed half of them in and had them flown out in no time.

    The Democrats need Biden more than ever now otherwise President Trump it may well be. Which honestly, doesn't sound that alarming anymore.

  102. Any political candidate want to address the seriousness of this issue?
    $11,770 is the National Poverty Threshold for individual wage.
    $13,920 is the Average take home at Federal/Tennessee minimum wage. Approx. $1160 per month. $7.25 per hour. Minimum wage.

    Tennessee leads the nation for minimum wage workers:
    http://www.tennessean.com/story/money/2014/03/25/tennessee-leads-nation-...

    Average rent in Nashville:
    As of May 2015, average apartment rent within 10 miles of Nashville, TN is $1301.

    One bedroom apartments in Nashville rent for $1052 a month on average and two bedroom apartment rents average $1367.

    And TN is marketed as cheap labor, so corporations will move here?

    A working person needs government assistance. So when are we the tax payers going to stop subsidizing businesses' poor pay rates so working Americans can afford the basic needs?

    http://www.nytimes.com/2015/04/13/business/economy/working-but-needing-p...

  103. Sasha thanks for a little reality update!

  104. Love him or hate him, there is one positive that has emerged from all this drama - Trump has shaken the Establishment and left them quivering. It's one thing to hold the candidate from the other Party in contempt, blaming anything and everything on her/him but another matter altogether when you have to go for the jugular of one of their own. Hilarious or Sad? Guess, both!!

  105. It's too absurd...Mother Teresa or Margaret Thatcher on US currency?

    I guess the GOP doesn't want foreigners in our country but they're more than willing to stamp their images on our money!

  106. Did no one else cringe at Ted Cruz' shameless and pandering attack on Chief Justice Roberts? Shades of "impeach William O. Douglas" !

    When it comes to criticizing the Court, conservatives typically assail "judicial activism" and "judicial law-making." Yet as to the Obamacare decisions, Cruz wants a Court that would have been activist enough to strike down a law enacted by a democratically-elected Congress. In other words, "I'll appoint Justices who will hew to the Republican party line," not Justices like Roberts who at least say they are merely calling balls and strikes.

  107. I'm a hard-core Democrat and out of the entire scary GOP field I would be most comfortable with a President Trump. Yes, talk to Putin! What a concept, maybe Trump is a diplomat after all. The other candidates are militant, negative, arrogant (Fiorina) and just plain mean. I found their answers to just about every question to be truly frightening - if spoken by a President of the US. Take our country back-WARDS that's for sure.

  108. I have lost count of the number of stories today that mention or are about Donald Trump -- about a dozen. The Times should move beyond the circus world of the Republican primaries. I had to read the Washington Post to learn that Bernie Sanders is authoring a bill that would outlaw for-profit prisons, one of the more shameful aspects of America's carceral disaster.

  109. The problem with the debate is that Trump continued to present his more or less same over the top bombastic self while those who supposedly stood out such as Fiorina or Bush or Carson did so only by making bold faced lies.

    Fiorina's rift on abortion was a pure unadulterated outright lie about Planned Parenthood; Bush's claim his brother kept us safe is true only if you ignore the fact 911 took place on his watch, the war in Iraq has been disastrous, and Iran went from zero to thousands of centrifuges; while Carson's bit about vaccines defies virtually all expert opinion.

    Why are these people getting a pass? The only thing that separates them and the rest of the Republican field, as well, from Trump is not in the reality of their substance but stylistically only. All of them will say just about anything without regard to truth, facts, or reality.

  110. No need to dignify Carson with that "virtually."

  111. This was just a free-for-all of pandering to fringe groups, invoking Regan and premeditated punch lines. Everyone was loaded and waiting to unload some kind of pre-planned zinger on Trump.

    I'm not a fan or supporter of Mr. Trump, but he absorbed the blows and bounced back. It was, as if, he was presiding over a new, GOP version of "The Apprentice." Teflon Don

    Carly Fiorina looked silly - so eager to show her toughness and challenge Mr. Trump. Her "gotcha" moment was quickly defused (much to her visible disappointment) when Mr. Trump stated for the record, that "Carly, you're beautiful. You're a beautiful woman." If Ms. Fiorina is the candidate that Republican's want to use as their "pro-women" symbol - she's a poor choice. (This is not an anti-feminist dig, but at present we have two poor choices - both of whom seem unable to admit their mistakes or tell the truth.)
    Jeb! really fared no better in this round, despite his efforts. At least two failed attempts to bring Trump down. Seems to be a family trait - aggressive failure.
    On the whole, there they were, going on and on, talking over each other, pleading for attention, mixing metaphors, mashing fact and opinion (with little regard to facts or the Constitution.) It was a sad display, if I were not so worried about the country and the lack of leadership (Yes, I'm including Hillary Clinton) it might have been comical. But, it wasn't. Was it.

  112. I'll give Trump a rest for just a minute and would like to bring up Ben Carson's Immigration plan. I believe he wants to only let immigrants work in the agricultural sector, not allow them social services and they also cannot vote. Does this seem similar to any other period in American History? I actually also think Trump was nodding in agreement so, sorry Trump you don't get a pass here.

  113. Did a doctor really just say illegal immigrants should not be allowed social services and by that did he also mean medical care? How could a doctor not understand the public health risk this could cause-- think of the consequences in a major outbreak of disease? If this is an accurate representation of what he said (I did not hear the direct quote) then he should not even be allowed to practice medicine, never mind hold public office.

  114. Good point... These crazies would deny America its next Steve Jobs or Jonas Salk... hanging from an iron fence patrolled by border robots.

  115. Trump continues to dominate the spotlight and suck the oxygen out of the air from the other candidates. While last night's debate tackled serious issues and fostered some compelling dialogue among the candidates, it more frequently centered around Donald Trump as his rivals made mostly feeble attempts to fend off his personal attacks and then seek some modicum of validation from him. Donald Trump's professional wrestler persona, while outrageous and entertaining at times, is now very stale and burnishing the image of the Republican Party as foolish and clueless.

  116. The debate consisted of Jake Tapper asking the same question over and over again:

    "Donald Trump said _________________, what do you say about that?"

    Hewitt and Bash....why exactly were they there?

    We also learned that:

    (1) Half the Republican field is ready to send your kids off to die in the Middle East.
    (2) We'll declare war on Iran whenever.
    (3) The best way to combat an apocalyptic Islamic vision is with an apocalyptic Christian vision.
    (4) We need to re-industrialize America by bringing home jobs so Americans make our 'hello kitty' dolls not the Chinese.
    (5) The legal system is always trumped by Jesus, Allah and the Flying Spaghetti Monster.
    (6) The same Republican Party that has created government disfunction will magically become functional on 20 January 2016.
    (7) That Governor Jindal is a raving lunatic (see Christian apocalyptic vision above).

    That covers it.

  117. Right about Jindal. He wants to turn the rest of America into Louisiana. And bomb the rest of the world. He is one angry man!

  118. You forgot:

    8) Republican doctors will not explicitly come out in FAVOR of vaccinations. I wouldn't go to a doctor who lets political considerations trump science, I want to LIVE!

  119. Regarding Jeb Bush's incredible claim that his brother "kept us safe" -- does he not remember that GWB was warned about Osama Bin Laden using planes as weapons, and ignored the warnings, just a month before 9/11? The idea that he kept us safe is insulting.

  120. Right after that, he sent our troops to an unnecessary and disastrous war, killing 4,500 young Americans (and countless Iraqis) for NOTHING. No, George W. Bush did NOT keep us safe. The entire world is much less safe than before he entered the White House and his actions are a large reason for that.

  121. If there was the remotest chance that Fiorina would be elected President,
    I'd be terrified right now. Nobdy on the Times (or on NPR, for that matter) seems to have paid much attention to what she actually said, her shrill warmongering call for us to beef up the military at whatever cost. Instead she's praised - for what? For staring down Trump? Not enough of an achievement, to my mind.

  122. We neither need nor want brawn in a national leader. But does he have judgment? Character? Integrity? Insight? Vision? Compassion? Didn't see much of these last night. The conclusion is apparent.

  123. Haven't seen it for the last seven years. Why is its importance suddenly of concern?

  124. You'll see those when Bernie Sanders debates.

  125. Until receiving an absolute denial (and maybe not even then) from the Republican National Committee, many assume that in a recent meeting between Donald Trump and Reince Priebus, Donald Trump was promised the VP slot no matter which other might be chosen as the GOP presidential candidate.
    Time will tell.

  126. He may not have been at his best, but it would have
    been pretty boring without him.
    What a dull group

  127. Do you want an entertainer or a President?

  128. From this group? Neither.

  129. Ronald Reagan was both an entertainer and a President so there is no reason The Donald can't be both too!

  130. Fiorina is the poster girl for the version of Affirmative Action the Republicans claim to detest and want to eliminate: Some one completely devoid qualifications who is in the race solely because she is a woman. "See, we have a woman here. We are reaching out to the other half." Sure. . and Ben Carson relates to the average African-American voter.

  131. It recalls that "binders full of women" comment made by Mitt Romney!

  132. This Joe in Cincinnati says Hi to Joe in Sausalito and is grateful that the
    Bay Area is still thinking straight!

  133. Funny I had the exact same take. Boy was she dour, and over caffeinated.

  134. 10 Republican candidates on stage last night, all have boasted they'd do a better job than Obama of dealing with Iran, China; and facing down Putin and Kim. But they can't even deal with a poser like Donald Trump.

  135. Boom!

    The Republican Party and all its candidates completely discredited in two sentences.

    Bravo!

  136. The Donald is giving his performance rave reviews. This is major!

  137. I'm so sick of this ignorant buffoon Trump being front and center in these debates. He has one hot-button issue, immigration. Other than that, he's clueless. Enough already.

  138. Laurie seems to imply that the rest -- or some of the rest -- of the GOP presidential candidates aren't either clueless or -- assuming they're not clueless -- are lying through their teeth. One thing is abundantly clear: none of them feel what they have to say has to match up with reality. None of them. Each and every one of them is either flat-out lying or dumb as a post. Of course, they could be both. Intelligent people dedicated to evidence and logic simply can't believe the things these people running for the GOP nomination say they believe.

  139. I just have to use this space to comment on the other article that said that Carly Fiorina is making the Republican party more palatable to women: that would only apply to really stoopid women.

  140. One reason Donald Trump seemed far less commanding was that on some issues, he offered little substance beyond reassurances that he would be strong and tough, a negotiator par excellence and someone who would grasp the complexities of national security issues as president — and would find experts to help him.

    Challenged on how he would deal with the Russians putting military resources into Syria, he said he would know how to get along with Russian President Vladimir Putin, an answer that is unsatisfying.

    Trump got whacked. And his poll numbers will deflate hereafter.

  141. Disavowing modern science relating to vaccines and autism is but one example of today's right wing Republicans pandering to ignorance. As Trump is a master at such pandering, other republicans should not be surprised that he is better at pandering than they are !

  142. If you actually listened to the debate Trump said he was not against vaccines he just believed that they should be spaced apart in smaller doses because some of the vaccines given to babies are huge. Makes sense to me.

    Of course this won't be in the Times because these comments are carefully picked to make him look bad.

  143. They all want to cut taxes, they all want to wage wars and increase military expenditures. How they will make those numbers add up is a big secret.

    No need to waste 3 hours watching debates. You know they chanted: Wars, Reagan, abortion, job creators, Israel again and again and again.

  144. But Carly Fiorina who impressed the pundits most was also quite radical in cutting taxes. In a pre-debate interview to CNBC's John Harwood she stated that she wants to to propose a tax(cut)-reform plan, not as revenue neutral but revenue reducing reform, because to her government has grown too big. So "starve the beast."
    However, she also wants to increase drug-treatment programs by spending more money on it, because her daughter died of drug-overdose. She also wants to increase defense spending, all while shrinking the revenue!

  145. Trump has chutzpah. He may be off the wall, but he has the courage to open his mouth wide. We need more of this in politics and so, everyone is paying attention to the Donald.

    I think in the end, he may throw his support to another candidate, and then he can say that HE decided the election! What chutzpah!

  146. One Times headline today actually has the audacity to laud Fiorina by saying "she's shoring up GOP support among women". The Washington Post called her the debate winner. This is the problem with Politic in the US. It's all about winning. Doesn't matter if she lied, made up stories. She lost a 35 YEARS old kid to drug. Since when a 35 year is a kid?

    The level of intellect during that debate was what needed for a candidate running for election in a Sacha Baron Cohen movies like The Dictator, Borat etc....

    And Jeb Bush:" My Brother kept us safe" says all one has to know about republicans . FACTS DON'T MATTER

  147. Trump has bought and sold political influence, gamed the system for his personal benefit, and screwed over small investors and the taxpaying public by reneging on his business debts. We put politicians in jail for that kind of behavior, but are ready to put Trump in the White House. I'm not getting it...

  148. Only one of the traveling troop mention the keywords necessary for the incoming President. Kasich the Governor of Ohio, stressed the need for cooperation with the other party, which for the first seen years has been lacking by the congress with NO as a their moto. We were warned several times of the intent of the "friends " from the Saudis, most notable was the attempt to bring a tower down from ground level with the truck loaded with fertilizer. And by the way, the navy is without equal, over 300, there is nothing on the horizon to come close to our air force. Constant research and updating is best for our first class army and marines.

  149. Why would we possibly want a brawler to lead us in the 21st century? We need a calm, thoughtful leader who will act decisively, with keen judgment and according to the Constitution, the rule of law and the best interests of all Americans. Buffoons need not apply.

  150. “I think women all over this country heard what Mr. Trump said,” she said sharply. Except for Republican woman according to the polls.

  151. Why don't we put Brits on all our money?

  152. Trump is no brawler; he's a would-be bully, whose 'muscles' are money and a spiteful mouth

  153. "She erroneously attacked Planned Parenthood, ..."

    A couple of female GOP operatives were interviewed on Bloomberg. They said ONLY 20% of GOP women care about the abortion issue. Carlie, and the rest of GOP candidates haven't done their research.

  154. Thank you, NY Times, for being less partisan about Trump the candidate and giving us a factual synopsis of the debate, especially those of us who were not interested in watching another tedious personality extravaganza. Sadly, I am going to have to vote for a Republican to punish my party for its rank betrayal of working Americans, on immigration, on outsourcing/insourcing and on a dangerously incompetent foreign policy that seems only to benefit Saudi Arabia. I wish there were a Gerald Ford or Bob Dole to vote for, but, alas.

  155. The Donald Trump circus had its second performance last night and all it really proved is that almost all of the Republican Candidates are clowns. Ten of them wedged themselves onto the stage (tiny car?) along with Trump the ring master last night, but only one of them -- John Kasich -- deserves to be taken seriously. The rest of them engaged in so much sabre rattling, posturing, distortion of fact, demogoguery, and out right lying that anyone who takes them seriously needs to spend some time away from right wing infotainment.

    A couple of points worth noting:

    1. Getting rid of Obamacare means taking health insurance away from more than 11 million people.
    2. ISIS would not exist if Saddam Hussein had not been removed from power on false information.
    3. The economic recovery under President Obama has been deeper and faster than under Reagan.
    4. Obama proposed immigration reform that would have allocated money to improve the fence between the US and Mexico in addition to providing amnesty to some people here illegally: Republicans in Congress blocked the bill.
    5. Obama asked Congress to approve military attacks in response to Assad using chemical weapons -- Republicans in Congress refused to authorize the actions.
    6. Obama proposed a jobs bill that would have simultaneously rebuilt infrastructure: Republicans in Congress blocked the bill.

    There is room to criticize President Obama, but that would take honest thought and reflection and the GOP isnt interested in that.

  156. I disagree with Rand Paul on many issues but he made some good points last night. The overwhelming calls for beefing up our bellicose military response to foreign governments by all the other candidates is disturbing.

  157. A lot of very nasty men & woman on this stage... They should all go back to where they came from... hell.

  158. The implosion of Trump's candidacy has started.
    As expected, he offered NOTHING substantive during the debate.

  159. "Clearly, many people like and expect the insults, the brash language, the Don Rickles nature of Mr. Trump’s candidacy."

    What an insult - to Don Rickles.

  160. Yeah, Carly had a big night. Lied through her teeth about H-P and the fact she was canned. Lied about that Planned Parenthood video which is a fake made by some whacko right movement. Has lost two previous elections. Go GOP nominate her. Romney's loss will look small in comparison.

  161. I tried to watch this debacle but was too embarrassed for the country I live in. The commentators asked baited questions, designed to boost ratings but only showed how inept this whole field of loose cannons truly are.

  162. What a bunch:
    Narcissist with the mentality of a 7th grader. Insult and uninsult, makes it all right. No depth of experience or knowledge, only "trust me, I'm smart, rich and good looking).
    Carly: took advantage of affirmative action. Dour, unsmiling, always interjecting. Let's get her Palin on!!
    Boss Hog: Going all Huey Long and threatening to PROSECUTE Hillary in a debate. If he can make his various corruption problems disappear.
    Marco: Hair on Fire ALL THE TIME. Does he know that FIdel Castro is not the President?
    Jeb Dough!: Relevant....not much.
    Tail Gunner Ted: there's not right to his right. The Scalia/Alito of the legislative branch.
    Two Buck Huck: Let's see a state official insists on imposing her beliefs on others from her government job....please read the First Amendment again. National sales tax? Really? Paying taxes is a punishment? Really? Blastula Rights? Really?
    Walker: who....whudhesay? Oh right, he survived Tahrir Square.
    Ayn Rand Paul: said good stuff on war and the war on drug stuff
    EZ Ben: 10/10/10
    Kasich: Wolf in Republic Party wool

    On the whole....what a scary bunch.

  163. Trump's reassurance that he and Putin would get along reminded me of Sarah Palin's reassurance that she's keeping an eye on Russia from where she is in Alaska

  164. Or that President Bush (the son, not the father) said he looked into Putin's eyes and could see his soul. Yep. That was a good one.

  165. Hopefully, it will not take us long to 'forget' about Trump
    as it did to pay no attention to Palin.

  166. It is appalling that Fiorina is getting the plaudits she is, even from the so-called "liberal" media.
    Trump has an over the top Don Rickles approach that often has more truth in it than anything she has ever said. And underlying it is a sense of humor and inclusiveness she is incapable of.
    If you listen the to the mainstream media she "won" and Trump didn't have energy.
    Supposedly she is "passionate" and "polished". But so are all demagogues.
    She is horrible on women's issues. She really does have an appalling record as CEO and had to use lawyers to walk away with over 100 million dollars walking away from a company which before her tenure had increased in share value by 20% every year of its existence.
    She also is a climate change denier.
    But worst of all she lacks all civility and is fond of calling Hillary a "liar" repeatedly. And her statement about Planned Parenthood was pure misrepresentation and fear mongering. It is hard to stoop as low as she did in her comments. But Republicans need lies more than Truth.

  167. I turned off the TV after the Planned Parenthood bit. There is absolutely no excuse for allowing such blatant lies to go forth unchallenged. Our government may shut down next week over this issue, and still this false, distorted narrative continues as though there is a shred of legitimacy to it.

    There are some facts in this world. It's not all a matter of opinion or belief, and when a candidate for POTUS tells a blatant, verifiable lie on national television they should be forced to answer for it.

  168. Did anyone else think it a little strange that Trump and Bush "slapped five" like they were playing a video game together rather than engaging in an important debate where Bush was supposedly offended on behalf of his wife and Trump refused to apologize?

    Trump offered the palm up and Bush emphatically responded. Earlier, Carson refused a fist bump (I think that's what it was), responding with some kind of awkward contact, but obviously he wasn't comfortable with it for whatever reason. I wouldn't have been. I know that the propriety with which politicians act has been relaxed and I'm generally glad for it. I don't care if they emote or wear jeans or even shorts. And they go on tv and make silly jokes, hoping to seem more human. But, slapping five? What next? And end zone dance when they win the election or score a debating point. That silly finger waggle young men do at each other? I just hope he doesn't try to hug Fiorina. Or chest bump anyone.

  169. Just a random observation for those of you posting below, secure in your Manichean view of American politics (Democrat good, Republican evil): All of the major players in the Enron scandal went to jail, this despite the company's high powered connections in government and with President George W. Bush in particular. Barack Obama (whom, btw I voted for twice), despite campaigning on a platform of responsible government and social justice, appointed Eric Holder, a former corporate defense attorney, as his Attorney General. Perhaps predictably, not a single perpetrator of the 2008 financial collapse, an economic disaster several orders of magnatude greater than Enron, served so much as a minute of jail time.

  170. If this was a reality TV show, of the eleven candidates on the adult stage, then Huckabee should be cast off the island. Huckabee seems to be a nice person, but he doesn't not have anything to contribute. We need to keep Rand around for his independent views. (Maybe move Pataki up to the adult stage next time and see if he can make a go.) Carly demonstrated that she deserves to be on stage, and it is great to have a woman there. The real question is -- How long is Trump going to continue to participate?

  171. I got a driving headache and had to turn it off. What they really seem to be shouting about is: "Why isn't a Republican in the White House?" It's the source of everything. Make America great again = put us "in charge" again. Well, maybe they will manage to win in 2016 and hopefully they will then feel better. But so far it looks like they could lose again.

  172. How in God's name did Trump let that Bush moment pass when Jeb mumbled that his brother had "kept us safe."

    In what universe did that happen? George W. Bush was commander in chief the day the United States was attacked on September 11th. He had an opportunity to prevent it and he simply bungled it like he bungled the response to the chaos and tragedy in New Orleans.

    George W. Bush did not "keep us safe."

    That is the historical record.

  173. I had to point this out to a W supporter a few years ago when he made the same comment that George W. Bush had kept us safe. Kind of like "Other than that Mrs. Lincoln how did you like the play?"

  174. I gasped at that remark, too, just as I gasped at the same "he kept us safe" claims during W.'s re-election campaign. And then the Republicans held their 2008 nominating convention in NYC and trumpeted 9/11 footage as though it were something they were proud of ! Can you imagine the Democrats deliberately holding their 1948 convention in Honolulu and proudly showing footage of the 1941 Pearl Harbor attack, as though it were their finest moment and not a shameful and catastrophic failure ?

  175. Trump said "I don't feel safe" in response.

  176. I can't believe that this debate was held in California and Nagourney didn't discuss climate change. California is seeing the disastrous, early effects of a condition that all the candidates deny the existence of. Since I couldn't bear to watch a three-hour debate by these bozos, I don't know if climate change came up or not.

  177. No other candidate (democrats included) has uttered a single word that's memorable. Go Trump!

  178. My grandfather, who was a smart fellow, offered this: "You do not need to worry about hanging someone. Just feed them the rope, and they will hang themself." Such is the case with Trump. Entertaining at the outset; detestable at the end.

    With a crowded GOP field of competitors, the bulk of whom have no clue as to how to handle him, only Carly has it figured out. With one sentence, she boxed him in, put him on notice with women of both parties, and made him walk back his remark about her looks...in such a way that he looked to be the phoney that he is. All the others keep being sucked into his game. Frankly, I think Trump now is afraid of her, and now will avoid directly attacking her. Great defense at its best.

  179. An after thought on the debate. Since Kasich, Christie, Bush, Walker and Jindle affirm loudly that their administrations have brought to their state to an unprecedented state of well-being, how come they are campaigning as if the four horsemen of the apocalypse
    are ravaging the country?

  180. The link between vaccines and development of autism has been debunked, supposedly. But there certainly is a link between vaccines and devastating side effects for a small but profoundly-unlucky number of children--hence the byzantine mechanism of the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program. How many commenters know that even exists?

    Trump is not a doctor, but he made a point that many thoughtful parents and medical practitioners are concerned about--the timing and number of inoculations infants and toddlers receive. He said something that did not strike me as in any way foolish--that he ensured all his children were vaccinated with the recommended dosages--but on an extended schedule, to minimize the possibility of adverse effects.

    The bundling of vaccine doses is for the convenience of doctors, parents and public health authorities. It reduces the cost of immunizing children and ensures greater compliance with the full recommended dosages. How many parents have the time and resources to demand that pediatricians extend the vaccination schedule? How many doctors have the time to do so?

    To press for more inquiry about a crucial public health issue is not wrong. To dismiss the 100 percent devastation of a family whose child is one of the few--how many, actually?--harmed by a vaccine, as some sort of *acceptable risk,* is very wrong indeed.

  181. The problem with Trump is that even with his all his faults and utter lack of class, diplomacy or sensitivity, much less mastery of the many issues involved in governing a country, he shines like a star compared to his lackluster and uncreative competitors who spout the same old tired clichés on how bad Obama is and how we need to go in and invade Syria. Trump derides Obama too but then again he derides everyone, makes the whole leadership race on par with a reality show, but wakes people at least.

  182. Was the audience was hand-picked by the GOP establishment to tilt away from Trump in its reactions?

    No mention of how it was selected, which has a major impact on which candidate gets what applause when.

    Hmmm ... .

  183. Brawler? Isn't that someone who loves a good fight? Bully more accurately describes Trump as someone who picks on people he perceives as being weaker than he is on the assumption that he can set them up so that he can take them down. Not an admirable characteristic in anyone. Not an acceptable characteristic for a President of the United States.

  184. ".....perhaps Mr. Trump should not change what he is doing for a while."?
    Right, he should continue to be what he is: a bloviating a** clown.

  185. "Jeb Bush returned Mr. Trump’s glare. 'As it relates to my brother, there’s one thing I know for sure: He kept us safe,' he said."

    Tell that to the people who died in the Twin Towers.

  186. The guy is not a polished politician .. He's a businessman with a big ego. But he is going to turn things upside down in Washington because he's not a career politician and will try something new and unconventional even by my standards. I want to be around to see it blossom or fail.. The bottom line is I don't care what he says or who he offends- I'm still voting for him because career politicians have destroyed this nation.