Monday’s GOP Debate: John King And The Seven Dwarfs
This past Monday the GOP held its umpteenth debate between a bunch of conservative candidates who have no hope of winning a presidential election. It was a beautiful day in New Hampshire and the weather was perfect for a pointless exchange of ideas that would have no bearing on anyone or anything. Tim Pawlenty and Rick “Foot-In-Mouth” Santorum stumbled badly out of the gate, as Pawlenty tripped over his own words and Santorum seemed lost and confused as to where he was exactly. Cain transiently held the lead with Newt, Bachmann, Romney and Paul close behind. But within minutes, Cain was showing signs of trouble as the Tea Party discovered that Cain is black. Nothing-new Newt closed in on the rail, but then as luck would have it, he somehow lost his saddle, reins, stirrups, clothes, rider and horse. Paul, Bachmann and Romney were then neck and neck, but Paul started falling behind as he tried to repeal NAFTA. Romney pulled away from Bachmann, who must have taken all her lithium to remain this competitive. And the winner was…… Romney by three lengths. But frankly, the real winners were those who decided not to watch this dribble.
While arguably some of the dwarves came out of this with their dignity intact, the debate’s host, John King, certainly did not. Asking the most inane questions I have ever heard, the GOP hopefuls were peppered with such hard queries as: “Leno or Conan,” “Spicy or Mild” and, my favorite, “Blackberry or iPhone.” This kind of nonsense was causing me to ask myself “barf bag or toilet.” Really, was there nothing else King could have asked? I didn’t realize all of the world’s problems had been solved, and that we could now waste our time with such trivial matters. Oh wait a minute, they haven’t. All of those world problems are still out there. But, evidently, instead of hearing what these would-be world leaders may do to resolve such issues, we needed to discover what type of wing sauce they liked. You suck John King. Go back to sports, or infomercials or whatever media rock from under which you climbed out. Is there really no one in TV news who knows how to moderate a debate anymore?
Pretty-boy Romney was the clear winner in this debate, as the others all seemed to worship his perfectly coiffed hair and failed to criticize him in any meaningful way. Pawlenty withered in Romney’s presence, refusing to even man up and “own” his “Obamneycare” remark that he had talked up and down on the Sunday news shows. When the subject was brought up, Pawlenty had that “deer in the headlights” look that he gets whenever he’s asked a question he doesn’t like, and he danced around it with the grace of Kate Gosselin. Stammering and avoiding questions are a sure way to wind up like Gingrich, whose entire team quit this week in the face of certain defeat. Oddly, Gingrich is reading the electorate better than his competitors, and he would be doing better poll-wise if he wasn’t such a blowhard. He is the only person speaking out against the Ryan budget plan, albeit in more muted tones than he had voiced previously.
Santorum, whose name sounds like a place that he should be committed to, went right for the crazy by appealing to the Tea Party, shut-ins and the mentally insane with his special brand of nonsense. In his brave new world, abortion would be criminalized, gays would be hunted for sport and Christianity would be the universal religion. Good luck with that platform.
Herman Cain, the former CEO of Godfather’s Pizza, who has never been elected to anything in his life, has spent the last few weeks talking about the dumbest of things. He has called liberals the dumbest of the dumb, said Obama was born in Kenya and, the piece de triumph, at the debate supported both the Ryan plan and the privatization of Social Security. Herman, you go ahead and run on those ideas and watch your poll numbers and Intensity Score fade into the sunset.
Both Ron Paul and, most surprisingly, double-agent Michele Bachmann came out of this debate largely unscathed. The only two in the debate that currently serve in government, they both came across better than expected. Bachmann in particular spoke in complete sentences, didn’t avoid questions, looked into the right camera for once and didn’t come across as crazy. Rick Santorum did that all on his own.
So there you have it folks. Romney emerged the clear winner with his perfect hair and smile, stealing the show from the forgettable others. A Boston Globe poll had him up by 30 points over his closest competitor in the New Hampshire primaries. Even in Iowa, where he has no plans to compete, recent polls put him at the lead for the caucuses as well. It seems that, for the moment, Romney is the one to beat. Let’s just hope John King will not be around to question him.