The fifth Republican presidential debate focused on the threat of radical Islamic terrorism and how each candidate proposes to keep the U.S. safe if elected president.
Donald Trump, who has been the frontrunner for much of the race, again sparred with a number of the other candidates, but was also eclipsed in some instances by Texas Senator Ted Cruz and Florida Senator Marco Rubio who are rising in the polls.
USA Today reports that Trump and former Florida governor Jeb Bush argued over competent leadership.
“You’re not going to be able to insult your way to the presidency,” Bush said to Trump, adding that leadership is not about “attacking and disparaging.” Bush also accused Trump of being a “chaos candidate,” to which Trump responded that “nobody cares” about Bush’s campaign, and cited the poll numbers as evidence.
Although Trump unequivocally told the audience that he promises not to run as an independent should he fail to achieve the GOP nomination, his proposed Muslim ban stirred up controversy and opened up a discussion on immigration.
Marco Rubio and Ted Cruz took different stances toward immigration, with Rubio ultimately conceding that he would be in favor of undocumented immigrants eventually being allowed to apply for a green card, while Cruz ruled out citizenship for undocumented immigrants altogether.
While Ted Cruz stated that radical Islam was the predominant threat facing America, Kentucky Senator Rand Paul, who barely made it onto the main debate stage, stated that America’s national debt was the most important issue the country faces.
Although criticized for being soft-spoken, Ben Carson asserted that voters need only look at what he has accomplished to know that he can and will get things done. "One of the things that you'll notice if you look through my life is that I don't do a lot of talking, I do a lot of doing,” stated Carson.
Similarly, Carly Fiorina and Ohio governor John Kasich emphasized action and finding viable solutions to America’s problems. New Jersey Governor Chris Christie emphasized his real-life experience in making executive decisions, while Fiorina stressed the importance of the private sector’s involvement and the implementation of modern technology to increase America’s national security, according to Brookings.
Trump, on the other hand, suggested censoring the internet, an idea which Rand Paul strongly criticized.
According to Politicususa.com, Trump, Cruz, and Paul all had strong performances.
Photo courtesy: Salem Radio Network
Publication date: December 16, 2015