GOP Debate Post-Mortem: Trump Top, Fiorina Flourish, Carson Crumbles

Tyler Durden's picture

While Lindsay Graham was a clear winner in the undercard (like being the tallest midget?), the main event was a mosh-pit of anatagonistic self-abuse for The GOP as candidates ran rough-shod over each other and the moderators. Fiorina stood up to Trump (though not too aggressively) and Trump replied how beautiful Fiorina's face was, Paul was bowled over (by Trump), and Trump was ironically dismissed as "a great entertainer" as the debate took place in great entertainer Ronald Reagan's library. It was clear that "the rest" of the GOP field was not about to let Trump dominate... and he didn't but the night was, in one word, chaos. Trump spoke the most as expected and in most polls was voted as 'winner' with Fiorina gaining most.

CNN's Jeff Zeleny seemed to confirm social media's view that Graham was the undercard winner

Sen. Lindsey Graham had the strongest performance of any candidate in the first debate. Graham topped the talk-time...

  • Graham: 19:47
  • Santorum: 15:38
  • Jindal: 13:06
  • Pataki: 10:58

From start to finish, his one-liners delighted the crowd, his command of policy was unmatched, particularly on national security and foreign policy. He exuded substance. And he shows that experience pays. The question is whether voters want that experience. And, of course, whether he will ever be able to debate the full field.

But the bookies sum it all up... Odds to suspend/end campaign by Nov. 1

George Pataki

  • Odds pre-debate: 40%
  • Odds post-debate: 55%

Lindsey Graham

  • Odds pre-debate 42%
  • Odds post-debate 42%

Rick Santorum

  • Odds pre-debate: 34%
  • Odds post-debate: 40%

Bobby Jindal

  • Odds pre-debate: 33%
  • Odds post-debate: 40%

So Pataki is gone? Which is somewhat comical given Trump's later comment that

"Pataki wouldn't be elected dog-catcher right now"

*  *  *

The main event started with what felt like an hour of introductions then the big one hit...

The first heads-up was Fiorina vs Trump as she positioned him as a "great entertainer," which is ironic given the debate was being held in Ronald Reagan's (an entertainer) library, but declined to answer if Trump was "qualified" to put his finger on the nuclear button:


Then Trump began...


Which the eye surgeon swung at...


Carson came across quiet again...

Retired Neurosurgeon Ben Carson was surging in the polls coming into Wednesday night’s debate, but he has done little this evening to draw voters to his candidacy. He has had few, if any, memorable statements.

But actually spoke more than last time and managed some good points...

Bush had more of a presence that last time but his most notable moment was to Trump's negativity on his brother...

“Your brother’s administration gave us Barack Obama because the last 3 years were such a disaster.”


“It was such a disaster those last few months that Abraham Lincoln couldn’t have been elected,” Trump says at CNN’s Republican presidential debate


Bush opened back-and-forth by saying of Trump: “The lack of judgment and lack of understanding about how the world works is really dangerous”

or put another way...

But disappointed his mum...

Trump and Cruz were the most "uncivil" according to US News...

*  *  *


Donald Trump summed it all it in 7 seconds

Responding to Paul, Trump pounded him with "I never attacked him on his looks, and believe me, there’s plenty of subject matter right there.”

But Paul made some good points...

Mid way through, CNN re-ignited the Trump-Fiorina battle...

The only thing Kasich said was:


Trump added:


For a brief moment, there was some agreement with Trump...

“We are the only ones dumb enough, stupid enough” to offer citizenship to babies born in U.S. to parents here illegally “and we take care of the baby for 85 years,” Donald Trump.


Trump says 14th amendment says birthright citizenship “is not correct and in my opinion it makes absolutely no sense”


Rand Paul says “I hate to admit it but Mr. Trump has a point here” and says there’s never been a “direct supreme court case” on children born to immigrants in the U.S. illegally


Carly Fiorina says you “cant just wave your hands and say the 14th amendment is going to go away.” “It will take an extremely arduous vote in congress” and “a long arduous process in court”

Politico offers some inisght with Trump's 7 most memorable debate lines...

1. First words: “I’m Donald Trump. I wrote the art of the deal. I say not in a braggadocious way. I’ve made billions and billions of dollars.”


2. Asked to respond to Carly Fiorina: “First of all, Rand Paul shouldn’t even be on this stage. He’s number 11.”


3. On himself: “Believe me. My temperament is very good, very calm.”


4. On Paul: “I never attacked him on his looks, and believe me there’s plenty of subject matter right there.”


5. On George Pataki: “He wouldn’t be elected dog-catcher right now.”


6. On his multiple bankruptcies: “People are very, very, impressed with what I’ve done. The business people.”


7. A left-handed compliment to Jeb Bush: “More energy tonight. I like that.”

Trump and Bush managed the handshake that Trump and Carson didn't...

And here is CNN's protracted way of adding to ad revenues... POTUS nicknames...


*  *  *


As expected, Trump spoke most... more than Paul, Walker, & Huckabee combined

Quite different allocations that last time...

*  *  *

Polls suggested trump was the clear winner...

But the big surge by Fiorina and plunge for Carson was most notable.

As CNN notes, the second Republican debate was supposed to be the one where candidates like Jeb Bush, Scott Walker and other would-be frontrunners ganged up on Trump.

But Trump's greatest antagonist on Wednesday night was Carly Fiorina. Fiorina, who got into the main event at the 11th hour, was aggressive and concise in taking on Trump.


She countered his attacks against her business acumen, challenged his remarks about her appearance, and demonstrated her knowledge of foreign policy -- a slight against Trump's inability to cite specifics in a recent Meet The Press interview.


No one on stage Wednesday night showed as much passion, nor demonstrated as much poise, as Fiorina -- which could yield major results among Republicans who don't support Donald Trump.

And as Google Politics shows, search interest in Fiorina and Trump soared...

We are all winners though...

*  *  *

Finally, this excellent tweet summed up the circus perfectly...


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formadesika3's picture

I just finished watching the debate and WOW!!! was that inspiring!!!

Any one of these candidates could be president! I really liked what they had to say. Especially when they debated foreign policy. Right on the money.

Look, I know we're all a little bit jaded with politics, but all I can say is that we have so many qualified candidates that you shouldn't be ashamed to stand up and say YES! I believe. This country will be great again right after we elect a good qualified no-nonsense individual to the Oval Office. Remember, your vote counts so stay tuned.

Hitlery_4_Dictator's picture

I had a good laugh at this statement. Surely it was in jest.

Money Counterfeiter's picture
Money Counterfeiter (not verified) Hitlery_4_Dictator Sep 16, 2015 10:28 PM

MDB flipping off the ZH'ers.

Plunge Protection's picture

At least Rand had a few good moments, he did much better in this one than last one.

FireBrander's picture

Rand the Fat Man debating marijuana...every point Chris made about marijuana fits 100% PERFECTLY with Alcohol...gateway drug, destroys lives, addictive, ruins families, clogs our prison system...where's the call to make alcohol illegal and send it users to "alcohol court"?

FireBrander's picture

Jeb Bush admitted to smoking pot...his brother to cocaine and alcohol abuse...

Would they admit, that had they been caught, their wealthy and connected families would have pulled the necessary strings to let them walk free?

One set of laws for them, another for us...NO THANKS JEB...and FUCK YOU TOO!

FireBrander's picture

Huckabee jizzing over the 10th Amendment...States Rights...yeah..

What if the people of a state want 100% legal, all term abortions?

Legalized pot?

Gay marriage?

Oh, no, can't have that...Big Government must step in to enforce "Gods Law"...and cram it down the States Throats...Fuck the States when it goes against my Religious and Personal belief...what a total fucken hypocrite.

Rand should have buried him over that…

J S Bach's picture

Trump Toots, Fiorina Farts, Carson Crepitates!

What a bunch of inane bullshit this all is.

Bananamerican's picture

"No evening with Trump would be complete without an insult or two aimed at President Barack Obama.

Characteristically, he took a moment to bash Obama during a discussion about his decision not to strike Syira despite having drawn a red line that Syrian president Bashar Assad crossed.

“Somehow he [Obama] just doesn’t have courage. There is something missing from our president,” he said.

new game's picture

hey you, you forgot to ask me if i give two shits? ha...

TongueStun's picture
TongueStun (not verified) new game Sep 17, 2015 6:05 AM

Anyone else notice the debate fact checks ALL OVER THE SOCIALIST JEW MEDIA?



WHEN did the socialist jew media ever fact check Democrat debates or the Obowelmovement for that matter? IF both parties are the same, someone forgort to tell the socialist jew media.

Fun Facts's picture

Lindsey Graham - ZWO ziostooge pedophile 4 u donkeys

overmedicatedundersexed's picture

carly your record is showing:

"Yale business Professor Jeffrey Sonnenfeld said that Fiorina was "the worst because of her ruthless attack on the essence of this great company. ... She destroyed half the wealth of her investors and yet still earned almost $100 million in total payments for this destructive reign of terror."

dexter_morgan's picture

beats the alternative of having lost 100% wealth with status quo. 

azusgm's picture

Do you mean the same Lindsey Graham that accompanied John McCain to the Middle East and met with Muslim Brotherhood types?

GooseShtepping Moron's picture

Didn't you get the memo? Democrats don't have debates anymore.

Keyser's picture

Fiorina? Meh, who wants a POTUS that when leading both AT&T and HP, lost over 50% of their stockholder's investment...


dtwn's picture

Fiorina was fucking awful.  All she wanted was war and rebuilding the 6th fleet.  She called out Jeb for smoking weed, and called Kasich Christie in response to Kasich's answer to a question about Kasich's and Fiorina's Differences.


HEWITT: I'd like to talk about winning because I think all of you are more qualified than former Secretary of State
Clinton, and as were the people in the first debate, but there are different styles, and Carly Fiorina, Governor
Kasich, you're conveniently located next to each other, and you have different styles.
Governor Kasich, you've been on my show a lot. You refused to attack Hillary Clinton, you just don't want to go
there, you want to do the up with people. Go, Ohio, OK, and I like that.
Carly Fiorina, I don't have to bring up the Secretary of State ­­ you bring her up, so (inaudible).
Which one of you is wrong? Governor Kasich?
KASICH: Well, look, people still have to get to know me, so I want to spend my time talking about my experience
reforming welfare, balancing budgets, cutting taxes, providing economic growth when I was in Washington, turning
Ohio around. Eight billion in the hole, $2 billion surplus, up over 300,000 jobs, big tax cuts, strengthening our
All those things matter but, you know, as a young man in my first election in 1978, I defeated an incumbent
Democrat. I defeated an incumbent Democrat in 1982? running on the Reagan program, I was the only Republican in
America to defeat an incumbent Democrat that year.
And then, when I won for election of governor, I was the first Republican to defeat an incumbent in 36 years, and the
first person to have never run statewide out of politics for 10 years to beat an incumbent. That hadn't happened for
96 years.
So, we'll get to the point where we'll talk about Hillary Clinton, or whoever the nominee is, record. But right now, I
want to give people sense of hope, sense of purpose, a sense of unity, sense that we can do it. So...
HEWITT: Governor.
KASICH: You know, at the end of the day, I'm going to continue to talk about my record, because there is, did you
ever notice when people run for office, they run for president, they make a lot of promises, they don't keep them.
HEWITT: Thank you, Governor. KASICH: I don't intend to do that, and I going to be out there pushing it out ­­ don't
worry about me and Hillary. That will all work out, and I'm from Ohio. She will not beat me there, I can promise you
HEWITT: Carly Fiorina, your style?
FIORINA: You see, Governor Christie, people spend time talking about their track records, and Mr. Trump and I
have every right to do the same. And Mrs. Clinton has to defend her track record.
Her track record of lying about Benghazi, of lying about her e­ mails, about lying about her servers. She does not
have a track record of accomplishment.
Like Mrs. Clinton, I, too, have travels hundreds of thousands of miles around the globe. But unlike Mrs. Clinton, I
know flying is an activity, not an accomplishment. Mrs. Clinton ­­ if you want to stump a Democrat, ask them to name
a accomplishment of Mrs. Clinton's.
HEWITT: Thank you, Ms. Fiorina.
Governor Christie, your name was mentioned. I want to give you a chance to respond.
CHRISTIE: Listen, you know, Hugh, it's an important point. And the question is, who is going to prosecute Hillary

johnconnor's picture

Fiorina destroyed HP, ask any engineer or HP employee that worked on HP before she got there and after. The compaq buy out was another desaster, pretty much every major decision she made was a disaster. How a secretary became the CEO of a technology company that used to be the beacon of innovation, really puzzled me, not sure how she got in the big club

Otrader's picture

I work with a 'laid off' HP Engineer who was let go when she took power at HP.  He turns red with anger every time her name comes up.   She destroyed that company.  And, now running for President.  Go figure.

JLee2027's picture

I don't see any threat to Trump. Just a loud mouth feminist.

Zpigs's picture

If she's a feminist, she's as bad of one as she was a CEO.

HughBriss's picture

Have you ever met a "good" feminist?  No...?

That's what I thought. 

Harry Balzak's picture

I want gun and ammo vending machines next to every ATM.  

kralizec's picture

In the words of Rocket in Guardians of the Galaxy - "That's the first thing you said that wasn't batshit crazy!"

You convinced me, I'm writing in "Harry Balzak" for POTUS!

As for this debate...I have only four comments:

1) A totally expected MFM poll putting three of the E-GOP's favorite buttpuppets in the winner column.  Graham, Jindahl & Pataki?  LOL!  I guess picking Jeb would be too obvious a ploy.  Santorum is old news, we'll ignore him, most everybody else does.

2) The Drudge poll seems much more honest, though how Carson came in behind Fiorina I cannot explain.

3) Trump had the best quips, that Lincoln jab to Jeb was pure gold.

4) If I base any decision to participate in a pointless rigged political game on anything contained in this would be anybody falling in that upper right corner of the "civility" chart...I'll go all-in on offense/extreme, if wussies call that uncivil so be it, we could use some good 'ol honest uncivil truth now more than ever!  So I guess it's down to Trump and Cruz.  If you play the game...


Syrin's picture

What this debate needed was a handful of nailguns.   

joego1's picture

I just had to add my to tits.

Harry Balzak's picture

Gotta have tits

oh, and ass

Meat Hammer's picture

Didn't watch a minute of it. Did anyone mention that we need to end The Fed in order to be a free country again and that everything else is just a distraction from TPTB robbing us blind and enslaving us? Didn't think so.

DanDaley's picture


end the Fed

repeal the Patriot Act

put the Neocons (Hillary and Nuland included) in prison

Until somebody starts talking about doing these things, it's all hot air.

Bumpo's picture

Not to mention the ongoing meme that Assad 'crossed the red line' by gassing his own people. "Your premise is false, sir. Next quesiton"

overmedicatedundersexed's picture

fire, you win the where the fuck you been these last 20 years award:

"Gay marriage?

Oh, no, can't have that...Big Government must step in to enforce "Gods Law"...and cram it down the States Throats"

it's the feds making gay marriage a right, not the other way around.. as for craming it down the states throats well you are into puns one would guess.

.gov has no business telling us who gets married, or who has to provide services to those homo's who do.

you have no problem with .gov telling us You will bake that cake..come closer fire, you are a fucking fascist.

overmedicatedundersexed's picture

gotta stay with trump at this point, (did not watch the cnn circus)..he did bring the illegal invasion issue up front and he is not taking pac and k street money (so far)..I have voted in the past for Ron Paul, Rand is not quite the same as Ron..but I would vote for him as well..Ben Carson is a maybe  as well ...all the rest seem like the status quo, promise us everything to get elected, then do what K street tells them so no thanks.

FireBrander's picture

Overmed...talking about the exchange between Paul and Huckanut....Huckanut is pro 10th...unless he doesn't agree... 100% remove the feds from the gay marriage issue... then a state wants to legalize gay marriage...Huckanut would not honor the states decision...he'd use Federal power to squash the state to enforce (Huckanuts) "Gods Law".


bob_stl's picture

Abortion isn't the same as pot and gay marriage. Pot and gay marriage are covered under the 10th amendment. Abortion concerns a little human being who has it's own right to life liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

FireBrander's picture

Someone should have asked admit to pot you believe we should have jailed you, given you a felony record and destroyed your life over smoking that joint?

Oh, oh...and since you smoked pot, which is addictive and a gateway drug, what drug did you graduate to...and what crimes have you commited while high?

Semi-employed White Guy's picture

The elites can do any drug and its Ok.  But if a commoner even gets a contact buzz from weed, its Reefer Madness!

FireBrander's picture

Jeb admited to Pot use...isn't that a Class D Felony...doesn't that disqualify him from being President?...or is it a crime only if you get caught and don't have the money and/or connections to get the charges dropped?

RaymondKHessel's picture

Jeb doesn't want to be president it's painfully obvious. He's a dope and a pothead.

HughBriss's picture

And pray tell, what is wrong with potheads...?

venturen's picture

Firebrander you are kidding right? 

AlaricBalth's picture

Couldn't say who won the debate. Can tell you who lost.... The American people.

Dems won't fare any better. The DNC debates will be like Theatre of the Absurd.

Is this the best a country of 320,000,000 has to offer. I weep for the future.

Superdave532's picture

As bad as it seems, I do promise you that the right people are out there.  Politics is a cesspool... they'll come forward when we most need them.

RopeADope's picture

If someone can drain the cesspool the right people will come back.

TeethVillage88s's picture

What U Talkin' about Willis?

Ain't no Great White Buffalo comin' Down to save you and me!!

- Your lead is sniffin paint or attending special parties or in smokey rooms with corporate deal makers.


More_sellers_than_buyers's picture

Super I did alwalys believe America always seemed to have the right people at the right time,,,,but I'm skeptical at this point.

Shad_ow's picture

I found it boring and stale.  It was set up to play getcha with Trump and bolster Bush.  They spoke too much and it was the same old rhetoric, no solutions.  They are fighting for the scraps that will be left of our country and make me sick.