The Other McCain

"One should either write ruthlessly what one believes to be the truth, or else shut up." — Arthur Koestler


Posted on | August 11, 2011 | 15 Comments


9:03 p.m. ET: First question for Bachmann, who shovels out the red meat: “Send a message to Obama . . . one-term president!”

9:05 p.m. ET: Romney hits his talking points, gets a tough follow-up from Brett Baier.

9:08 p.m. ET: Question for Ron Paul. “Restore sound money.”

9:09 p.m. ET: Question for Herman Cain. “Make the tax rates permanent. . . . I represent growth. . . . Bring certainty back into the economy.” He gets applause.

9:10 p.m. ET: Jon Huntsman, asterisk.

9:11 p.m. ET: Newt Gingrich teaches a history lesson.

9:13 p.m. ET: Tim Pawlenty offers to come to your house and cook you dinner.

9:14 p.m. ET: Rick Santorum mentions that he’s traveled to 68 counties in Iowa. Also, he wants to cut taxes.

9:16 p.m. ET: Tough question from Chris Wallace to Tim Pawlenty about his dissing of Michele Bachmann. “In Congress, her record of accomplishments and results is non-existent.” Ouch. Wait ’til she fires back.

9:18 p.m. ET: Bachmann hits him with “cap-and-trade,” etc. Cheers from the crowd.

9:19 p.m. ET: She doubles down on her comparison of T-Paw to Obama. She’s a fighter, who fights, fights, fights.

9:20 p.m. ET: Pawlenty doubles down. Groans from the crowd.

9:21 p.m. ET: Bachmann goes back — fight! fight! fight!

9:22 p.m. ET: Chris Wallace hits Mitt Romney with a tough question on his business record and his record as governor of Massachusetts. Mitt looks really handsome, doesn’t he?

Commercial break. Ahhhh . . .

9:27 p.m. ET: Chris Wallace asks Gingrich about his campaign problems. Gingrich compares himself to Ronald Reagan. Accuses Wallace of “gotcha” questions, “playing Mickey Mouse games.”

9:29 p.m. ET: Question for Jon “Asterisk” Huntsman. He talks about how wonderful his record is in Utah.

9:31 p.m. ET: “Gotcha” questions for Herman Cain. Gets cheers for saying “Sharia law doesn’t belong in the courts of the United States of America.”

9:33 p.m. ET: Susan Ferrichio asks a question of Governor Asterisk, who says . . . eh, something.

9:34 p.m. ET: Mitt Romney talks immigration. He wants “the best and brightest” to be admitted as immigrants.

9:35 p.m. ET: Herman Cain: “America’s got to learn how to take a joke.” Applause. He talks immigration — more applause.

9:37 p.m. ET: Gingrich slams Obama on immigration. Gets applause.

9:38 p.m. ET: Ron Paul goes off on a tangent about Iraq and Afghanistan.

9:40 p.m. ET: Now Byron York asks Romney about Standard & Poor’s and taxes. Mitt fields it pretty well. “We cut spending . . . balanced the budget . . . leadership.”

9:41 p.m. ET: Pawlenty touts his rating as governor by the Cato Institute. Expresses regret for taxes on cigarettes.

9:42 p.m. ET: Bachmann asked about her vote for cigarette taxes, uses it to accuse Pawlenty of “cut[ting] a deal with special interests.”

9:44 p.m. ET: More back and forth — Pawlenty vs. Bachmann. Pawlenty says Bachmann’s answer is “illogical” — Governor Spock!

9:46 p.m. ET: Rick Santorum jokes about how little time he’s getting on TV. It’s not actually a joke, because so much of the debate is being chewed up by Romney, Pawlenty and Bachmann.

9:49 p.m. ET: Newt Gingrich draws applause for trashing the debt-ceiling bill and its “super commission.”

9:50 p.m. ET: Now Chris Wallace tries to stir up bad mojo between Pawlenty and Romney, using T-Paw’s “ObamneyCare” quote.

9:51 p.m. ET: Mitt Romney invokes the 10th Amendment. You’ll never go wrong in a GOP debate that way.

9:53 p.m. ET: More TV time for Mitt. Notice that Santorum doesn’t get these kind of question-and-follow-up deals.


10:44 p.m. ET: I’m back from Wal-Mart, where I bought a new power unit for $74. Good Lord, what a nightmare.

10:50 p.m. ET: Rick Santorum is very good.

10:51 p.m. ET: Commercial break. While I was coming back from Wal-Mart, I had a phone conversation with Jimmie Bise Jr., who pointed out that, once again, when T-Paw had a chance to go after Romney head-to-head, he pulled his punches. But no such deference toward Bachmann. Also, Byron York got booed for asking a question about biblical “submission.” In general, I think Bachmann got the better of it, and T-Paw looks weak.

* * * PREVIOUSLY * * *

The National Affairs Desk, 5 p.m. CT

AMES, Iowa
Greetings from the Hilton Coliseum at Iowa State University, media headquarters for tonight’s critical pivotal crucial world-historic debate between eight candidates for the Republican presidential nomination.

The tension here is palpable, and the greatest fear of the assembled masses of media — some 700 of whom have been credentialed for this gigantic enormous cosmos-enveloping event — is that no words can possibly describe how hype-worthy it is.

But we’ll try our best, doggone it.

UPDATE: A couple more photos from the scene:

Alex Pappas of the Daily Caller toils diligently, determined not to be scooped by the other 699 reporters covering this spectacular cataclysmic apocalyptic occasion.

Michael Barone told me he was very impressed by how Michele Bachmann manages to be so upbeat and optimistic while pronouncing gloom and doom.

UPDATE II: Paulistas gotta “represent the man”:

UPDATE III: More photos:

Gwen Ifill of PBS interviews . . . somebody important, I guess.

Rep. Steve King gives a pre-debate interview to Shira Toeplitz of Roll Call.

Jon Ward of the Huffington Post and Dave Weigel of Slate.

Ed Morrissey and Tina Korbe of Hot Air with Tony Katz of PJM.


15 Responses to “LIVE FROM AMES!”

  1. ThePaganTemple
    August 11th, 2011 @ 10:54 pm

    I hope Cain or Bachmann, or even McCotter, is so obviously the winner of the debate that no one can call Romney the winner and have the remotest chance of anybody taking them seriously. But it will be interesting to see the major news organizations (particularly the network news divisions) try to pull it off.

  2. Quick Hits | The Lonely Conservative
    August 11th, 2011 @ 8:10 pm

    […] a family trip. I have a whole bunch of tabs open that I need to get closed before I live-blog the Republican debate tonight. Sometime in between I have to fold another load of laundry and check the kids’ […]

  3. victoria_29
    August 12th, 2011 @ 12:23 am

    Interesting having a presidential debate without all the candidates…new concept anyway.

  4. The Big Debate: Live Blogging the Iowa GOP Presidential Primary Debate | The Lonely Conservative
    August 11th, 2011 @ 8:37 pm

    […] debate, and the Iowa straw poll, can make or break a few of the candidates. The line-up is here. Stacy is there on the scene, so I’m sure he’ll have the inside scoop. Me, I’ll be watching on […]

  5. james lagnese
    August 12th, 2011 @ 12:41 am

    How long are you in Iowa? I am just down the road. 

    Jim “The Right Guy” Lagnese

    P.S. Eric was asking for you. 

  6. Anonymous
    August 12th, 2011 @ 1:22 am

    Pawlenty is really stepping in it.

  7. postaldog
    August 12th, 2011 @ 2:00 am

    Liked Santorum’s statement about the 10th amendment.

  8. Iowa debate « Don Surber
    August 11th, 2011 @ 10:30 pm

    […] Robert Stacy McCain live-blogged the first hour. And Matthew Jaffe of ABC News blogged as well. […]

  9. Mike
    August 12th, 2011 @ 2:44 am

    I just did a short post about this

    Seems like Fox News is sabotaging debate by ignoring most of the candidates and concentrating on Ron Paul, Michelle Bachman and Tim Pawlenty, with an occasional bone thrown to Mitt Romney.

  10. Mike
    August 12th, 2011 @ 2:46 am

     At least Stacy’s former colleague, Susan Ferrichio is trying to be fair in her questions.

  11. Ames Iowa GOP Debate – No stupid Coke or Pepsi questions by the total destruction of Tim Pawlenty : Fire Andrea Mitchell!
    August 11th, 2011 @ 11:41 pm

    […] you want more opinions on the debate I suggest reading The Other McCain, Hotair, The Gateway Pundit. They’ve been in the “business” of covering GOP […]

  12. A Little About The Iowa Republican Debate « Truth Before Dishonor
    August 12th, 2011 @ 3:34 am

    […] by John Hitchcock on 2011/08/12 Once again, Mitt Romney was questioned about his RomneyCare. And once again, Mitt Romney tried to cover up his Big Government power-grab with the Tenth […]

  13. Nomination Excitations: Perry, Romney, And Pawlenty « The Camp Of The Saints
    August 12th, 2011 @ 10:38 am

    […] McCain was at the debate last night and has filed a very informative report here [see also his live blogging of the event, his after debate posting, and his report on how Mandate Mitt handled a Bolshe heckler yesterday […]

  14. J.M. Heinrichs
    August 12th, 2011 @ 9:29 pm

    Next time:


  15. FMJRA 2.0: Roam : The Other McCain
    August 14th, 2011 @ 8:55 pm

    […] Before DishonorMaggie’s NotebookDa Tech GuyRepublican RedefinedZilla Of The ResistanceLIVE FROM AMES!The (Perhaps Slightly Less) Lonely ConservativeThe (Perhaps Slightly Less) Lonely ConservativeDon […]