Game of Clowns! Liveblogging tonight’s Republican primary debate

By : Billy Manes
Comments: 3

Now that it has become apparent that the Republican presidential field of dreams is about the size of public school’s third grade homeroom class, and the intelligence – minus the public schooling part! – decisions had to be made by the brass at Fox News as to how to cover it. Somebody in an ugly suit sitting at a mahogany table grumbled, “Let’s just pick ten of ‘em.” And so it shall be.

Tonight, we will pop the red popcorn and drink the red drinks as we liveblog the political free-for all that will likely stutter and huff and puff around issues like marriage equality, Obamacare and immigration. We’ll also be sure to notice the nuanced gaffes that make this pageant so amusing and amazing.

And away we go: 

7:51 p.m.: Is this thing on? Did anybody catch the highlight reel for the children’s table of also-rans? We are catching up on clips, but we’re also not terribly inclined to do more than eat tater tots and laugh, laugh, laugh. Greta is talking about Donald Trump’s “fans,” and somebody said something about back-combing. Trumpy.

8 p.m.: My ladyfriends of the wonk have now created individual bingo cards for statements we expect to hear tonight. In other words, I can’t wait til we’re seniors.

8:21 p.m.: Actually watching the O’Reilly Factor. Target audience: 6th grade reading level.

8:24 p.m.: Let’s do a dissertation on the vacuum that is Ted Cruz. You first.

8:32 p.m.: Have you seen the “RONALD RAVEN” gaffe from Gov. Perry? HAVE YOU? You must. Look at it here.

8:52 p.m.: Ever been lost in one of those pre-game shows with multiple hosts all predicting the unpredictable? Ever thought of your elected officials as horses in a race, running backs in a high-school Friday night light? This is what we’re watching now in advance of the debate. There is a “Donald Trump Heat Map.”

8:56 p.m.: STAGED DELAY SHTICK! Ugh, this lineup. Neurosurgeon Ben Carson is here!

9 p.m.: I do not like snowy caucuses.

9:01 p.m.: Six million people submitted questions via Facebook. Those are six million questions that can never be unasked.

9:03 p.m.: one minute for answers, 30 seconds for responses, a lot of time for ill-placed news commentators.

9:04 p.m.: Donald Trump is the only one who will raise his hand and say that he might leave his party in order to run independently. He’s “talkin’ about a lot of leverage,” because he loves himself. Rand Paul just picked a fight out of turn on this one. IT’S LIKE WRESTLING.

9:08 p.m.: Marco rubio is “not new to the political process,” and this shouldn’t be a “resume competition” because if it is, Hillary Clinton is going to be elected. Whoa, this is some bizarre strategy. Hillary Clinton shouldn’t “lecture” Rubio, he says; the crowd cheers; misogyny.

9:10 p.m.: Jeb Bush is his own man, sometimes called ‘Veto Corrleone,’ and has nothing to add to the conversation.

9:11 p.m.: Donald Trump makes really bad jokes about women, or are they jokes? Megyn Kelly just accused Trump of leading the war on women. Trump, who has never met a stupid statement he hasn’t wrapped his mouth around, doesn’t “frankly have time for total political correctness. … What I say is what I say…” and then threatens to make attack on Megyn Kelly. Crowd cheers.


9:18 p.m.: HUCKABEE IS GONNA TALK MORE SOCIAL CONSERVATISM! Huckabee on Planned Parenthood: “Do something more bold,” talks about fetuses and babies, personhood, ‘unborn children,’ “sell them like they’re parts to a Buick.”

9:20 p.m.: Rand Paul and hysterical bulimia.

9:21 p.m.: Kasich has been handed an Ohio softball, all lined up for the middle-of-the-road of middle class. Also, his Medicaid expansion worked. Sorry, Republicans.

9:23 p.m.: Jeb Bush fell face down on the immigration question, but there was a pillow there. It’s called the Republican masses.

9:25 p.m.: Trump hates the media. SURPRISE! He also claims to be responsible for anyone even talking about immigration reform. “We need to build a wall. We need to keep illegals out.” BTW, he didn’t answer the question he was asked, so now he’s trying to do so. “Our leaders are stupid, our politicians are stupid, but the Mexican government is so much smarter.” This is Wrestlemania.

9:32 p.m.: The illegal immigration debate, as voiced by Marco Rubio into the choir, is incredibly insubstantial. Nobody has any idea what they ought to do with “illegal immigrants.” They just want to play some bizarro John Wayne fetish film with “America” and “wages.”

9:35 p.m.: Ted Cruz is making a really strong case for stupidity. Also, he’s running against Obama, seemingly. Obama, last we checked, is not running.

9:38 p.m.: Chris Cristie and Rand Paul are having a throw down, full decibels, right now. It’s about public records and hugging Obama! “The hugs I remember are the hugs that I gave to people who lost family members in 9-11.”

9:40 p.m.: I definitely trust Ted Cruz with any and all matters involving international relations. WE’RE WAGING JIHAD!

9:42 p.m.: Jeb met with every family involved with the Iraq war and prayed for each and every one, but Obama abandoned everyone by ending the illegal war. This is a whoopie cushion.

9:44 p.m.: Carson, speaking the obvious, “I was afraid I wasn’t going to get to talk again.” Also, let’s keep wars secret. Also, fuck the Geneva Convention. This is the rattle of pending insanity.

9:46 p.m.: Donald Trump is basically the worst. And hilarious. And the worst.

9:50 p.m.: Donald Trump is talking about how he buys off politicians. There are Charlie Crist jokes being made.

9:51 p.m.: “It’s not too big to shrink” — Mike Huckabee. Amen.

9:52 p.m.: FairTax talk bubbles up. Dr. Ben Carson, “I think God’s a pretty fair guy.”

9:54 p.m.: Jeb Bush on vouchers and hating unions and hating and loving and hating common core. Hypocrisy abounds here.

10 p.m.: Kasich, a white man from Ohio, is talking about supporting minorities in the most unbelievable fashion. We’re on the Hillary hate-wagon now.

10:05 p.m.: Chris Cristie wants to reform your “entitlements!” Everybody else is wrong; nobody knows anything better than Cristie does; my mom said that I could have your toys; I’m dumb.

10:11 p.m.: Sounds like Donald Trump is having a blood pressure spike while bragging about his corporate EBT cards. Oh, also, the lenders he borrowed from were monsters. BTW, Caesars just went bankrupt, and Cristie should know about it. Trump is fucking insane.

10:15 p.m.: TBT!!!!!!! Rick Perry from two hours ago saying that the Iran deal needs to be undone or something. Now, catch-up Thursday: Scott Walker remembers tying yellow ribbons around old oak trees, so deep is his foreign policy knowledge.

10:23 p.m.: Jeb Bush is being called to task by Kelly on the issue of his tangential connection to Planned Parenthood. He retorts with parental notification, crisis pregnancy centers, all the bad things … “my record is clear: I am completely pro-life.” He even referenced the Schiavo case. EEEEEEK. Now Kelly is making Rubio sweat on the abortion question. He believes that fetuses are just as valid as adults. We’ll be known as “barbarians” to future generations for killing babies. This is the most ridiculous thing I’ve seen since the last Republican event I’ve seen.

10:28 p.m.: Jeb Bush doesn’t believe in fighting when you’re in a political fight. He just wants to win.

10:30 p.m.: GAY MARRIAGE GAY MARRIAGE GAY MARRIAGE GAY MARRIAGE. Gov. Kasich just went to a GAY WEDDING. Ladies and ladies and gentlemen and gentlemen, we have a gayngle.

10:31 p.m.: Rand Paul is doing the gay marriage paranoia dance and just said, “it’s time to resist.” Oh, good. Guns meet gays.

10:40 p.m.: Pretty sure that neurosurgeon Ben Carson doesn’t know what he’s talking about when he says Ukraine. He’s been coached and has ended up an emotionless flack on foreign policy.

10:42 p.m.: “When you have mush, you push,” says Scott Walker, apropos of nothing outside of a Tom Cruise starter role.

10:44 p.m.: If you squint, they all look like Fred Flinstone and sound that way, too.

10:46 p.m.: “…And, GOD! ….. STAY TUNED FOR THAT,” Megyn Kelly, 2015

10:50 p.m.: OH GOD TED CRUZ YOU ARE NOT GOD. You are, however, a frightening man who does not have a hotline to “God,” or whomever. Kasich, there are no “miracles.” This is some pretty shady territory, Fox.

10:53 p.m.: Scott Walker is confessing that he is not a “perfect man,” but he has bathed in the blood of Jesus, because red is the new humility.

10:54 p.m.: God has blessed us (Republicans), this country and the veterans – Sen. Marco Rubio. Also, he’s going to fire the whole VA, because God. Megyn Kelly is totally hanging on the “God” device for the final moments of this debacle.

10:59 p.m.: Rubio was working as a waitress in a cocktail bar, that much is true.

11:02 p.m.: Huckabee just tried to make a Hillary joke. Nobody cared. Scott Walker is a guy with a wife and two kids and a Harley. He hates unions. Junior Varsity is calling you, sir.

11:04 p.m.: “We can’t do anything right” – Donald Trump. And that’s it. Off to cool off with the Daily Show finale. Sheesh.













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