4th Republican Debate: Who “Won”?

Tuesday night’s Republican debate, co-hosted by the Fox Business Network and Wall Street Journal, focused on the American economy. As Republicans see themselves as the party of economic responsibility, the Fox_Business.svgcandidates came prepared with statistics and numbers to back up their past decisions and future policies. Like previous debates, there was a lower-tier debate at 7pm with Chris Christie, Mike Huckabee, Bobby Jindal, and Rick Santorum. The prime-time debate started at 9pm and featured Ben Carson, Donald Trump, Marco Rubio, Ted Cruz, Jeb Bush, John Kasich, Carly Fiorina, and Rand Paul. The Expat Elector is here to tell you all about highlights of the debate and break down who were the winners and were the losers.

Jeb Bush seems to be out of chances to impress the American public. Commentators stated that this debate was most likely his last chance to speak to potential voters. Though he was able to speak well on immigration due to his experience in Florida, Bush fell flat on nearly every other topic. Contrary to my initial predictions, it seems to me that his polling numbers will only keep going down.

Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio went head-to-head. The two candidates have a lot in common – they are both Cuban-American, both serve in Southern and conservative states, both are young, and both are first-term senators. Despite these similarities, these two men have vastly different political views, particularly in the area of immigration reform. With this being one of the most important issues of the campaign, their backgrounds as the children of Cuban immigrants could be influential. We’ll stay tuned.

Hillary Clinton was on the minds of the Republican candidates. Even though it was a GOP debate, Secretary Clinton’s name was mentioned more than 40 times according to this Politico article. Because of this, it seems that the majority of Republican candidates believe that Clinton will be the eventual Democratic nominee.

Donald Trump seems to be losing steam. After weeks of hearing his outrageous statements, it shows both in the polls and audience response during the course of the debate. As the debates are turning more towards specific policy points and not solely on the personality and character of the candidates, Trump is failing to gain positive attention. We’ll have to see where this goes as I could be wrong but it seems that the best of his campaign is in the past.

20637917810_7419952d64_bSo who won? I’ve written about how much I dislike the term but I’ll ignore my personal feelings for the time being. In my opinion, Marco Rubio was the clear “winner” based on his results in polling combined with his performance in the debate. Jeb Bush was the “loser” based on his failure to rile up the crowd and focus enough on what makes himself unique as a candidate.

Missed the debate? Here’s a 2 minute wrap-up from CNN.

With 361 days until the election,

Phoebe Warren