Watched the Voters First Forum sponsored by the Union Leader newspaper in New Hampshire. This is kind of a warm-up to the first official Republican debate on the 6th. The candidates did not address each other. Rather they were interviewed one after another for about five minutes by a moderator at Saint Anselms College then came back for a second five minute interview. Scott Walker, Jeb Bush, Ben Carson, John Kasich, Chris Christie, Rick Perry, Bobby Jindal, Carly Fiorina, Rick Santorum, Lindsay Graham, George Pataki were in attendance. Rand Paul, Ted Cruz, and Marco Rubio participated by video and Donald Trump and Mike Huckabee were not there.
It seemed to be tightly scripted with softball questions and no room for the candidate to make a mistake. Some things that got through -
Dumbest comment - When asked about ISIS, Fiorina babbled on about what a great guy King Hussein is and what great allies the Saudi royal family are. What rubbish! King Hussein and the Saudi royals are corrupt decadent scumbags on the US dole. The Saudis were both likely involved in 09/11 and run one of the most repressive countries in the world where rape victims and the mentally handicapped are often executed and women cannot drive or do much of anything. They are no better than ISIS itself a US-Israeli construct in order to further achieve US hegemony. The Fiorina candidacy is baffling. The only real position of consequence she has had, CEO of Hewlett Packard, she was a complete failure at http://politicalcorrection.org/factcheck/200908200003
Interesting Idea - Rand Paul suggested making student loan payments tax deductible (currently only a certain amount of the interest is). I would have to look at this further but on the face of it that seems to be a good idea. Certainly more immediately doable than Bernie Sanders plan for free college tuition.
Best speaker - The fact that John Kasich is quickly moving up the polls and likely to qualify when the first tier debate participants are revealed tomorrow is a tribute to his speaking skills and his ability to pare down an idea to an understandable essence without losing the meaning or condescending to the audience. Something all speakers should aim for. Kasich has lot of Jon Huntsman 2012 ex-campaign staff working for him but is a much more disciplined better financed candidate than Huntsman was. It seems the gay rumors from the 90's have had no traction. He would be a formidable general election candidate. Kasich is not a moderate but fools people by talking like one and looks better in comparison with all the other clowns.
The forum can be viewed here https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UPJpLfDlMhc