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Drunkblogging the Last (?) GOP Debate of 2012

4:49PM Please excuse me if I’m even less coherent than usual for tonight’s drunkblog. This morning, I wrote a column on a whim, drove to Denver and back to see my endocrinologist (she says I look fabulous, out to lunch, back home for more blogging, then I spent two hours live-tweeting (and eating) a delicious lamb bolognese — and had three glasses of chianti.


But am I exhausted? No! I am as energized and ready to go as ever.

Why? Because this is certainly probably maybe the very last of the GOP Primary Celebrity Debate shows.

Stay tuned. I have lots of fun in store.

At least, after that setup, I’d better.

4:57PM CNN is running way too many commercials. I’m usually on my fourth or fifth drunk-ass remark by now.

4:58PM This is the 20th 2012 GOP Debate, according to the big fat liarheads at CNN. By my count, this is debate #1,000,006.

4:59PM Wolf Blitzer “suspects the social issues will come up” in the questions. I suspect at least some of the candidates will wear ties.

4:59PM Wolf Blitzer “suspects the social issues will come up” in the questions. I suspect at least some of the candidates will wear ties.

5:00PM Here we go…

5:01PM Did I ever mention that CNN’s overly-dramatic intros suck?

I did? Well, they do.

5:01PM It’s so cute how they pretend Newt is still a factor.

Oh, and RON PAUL.

5:02PM What’s the over/under for how many questions at this Arizona debate will be predicated on “Why do you hate all the Latinos so much?”

5:03PM There is not enough vodka in this martini.

Did I mention I just poured a fresh one?

5:04PM Newt is owning the purple tie.

5:06PM It’s just not fair. Anderson Cooper keeps taking his charisma supplements, but they never work.

5:07PM Ron: “I’m the defender of the Constitution, I’m the defender of liberty.”

5:07PM Rick: “I’m Rick Santorum,” and I really don’t want to talk about the gays tonight, OK?

5:08PM Mitt: I’m old enough to remember the American Dream.

I’m not sure that’s a selling point.

5:08PM Did Mitt just reference George Costanza? Plus-One, baby!

5:08PM Newt: “I have a program…”

Of course you do.

5:08PM Audience questions. Crap.

5:09PM “What are you going to do to bring down the debt?”

Rick: “I have a specific plan.”

HOW specific?


5:09PM Rick “will appeal ObamaCare.”

And that is the reason — the sole reason — I’d vote for him if he’s the nominee.

5:10PM I think Rick just promised to means-test mohair subsidies. I’m cool with that.

5:11PM To Mitt: Is Rick really a fiscal conservative?

MItt: I have a 57-point program to explain how he isn’t one.

5:12PM Mitt: “I’ve lived balancing budgets,” and also I totally rocked the Olympics. Remember when I rocked the Olympics?

5:12PM Mitt: “Is this program critical enough to be worth borrowing from China to pay for it? If not, I’ll eliminate it.”

I so wish he weren’t lying.

5:13PM Rick: Seriously, I’m a fiscal conservative. Seriously.

5:14PM Rick just accused Mitt of adopting the OWS rhetoric.

MItt goes with OWS like I go with Mormon rules on drinking.

5:14PM It’s the Mitt & Rick Show. Who’d a thunk it?

5:15PM Newt lives!

“When I was Speaker, we balanced the budget four consecutive years.”

5:15PM Newt has a program.

5:17PM To Ron: Why do you call Rick a fake?

Ron: “He’s a fake!” Big laughs.

5:17PM The awesome thing about having the candidates sit is, it makes Ron’s suit appear to almost fit.

5:18PM Ron is right. Foreign aid, nearly 1% of the budget, is just killing us.

5:20PM Did Santorum really just slam Florida? What’s he thinking, “Meh, I already lost there.”

5:21PM I think I liked the MItt & Rick Show better than the Rick & Ron Show.

Although I did love Rick & Ron in the Ice Follies.

5:22PM Mitt: I cut taxes in Massachusetts — which, in all fairness, is more difficult than cutting my bar tab in an election year.

5:23PM To Newt: How do you spur growth while cutting spending?

5:23PM Newt: I have a program.

5:25PM That martini should have lasted me quite a bit longer.


Back in a sec — I left the pitcher upstairs.

It’s OK. Newt will be going on for a while. He has a program.

5:27PM I’m back. Rick is talking with his hands straight out in front of him again, as though making sure a new shelf is plumb.


5:28PM Rick just went an lawful long way to get zero applause and a couple of boos.

5:28PM Mitt is talking process. I’m adding a twist to my martini.

5:29PM Mitt just got the applause Rick had been expecting 90 seconds ago. It was a little painful to watch, even for me who doesn’t like either of them.

5:30PM This is just an ugly, booed mess between Mitt and Rick.

It’s hard to tell who’s winning — other than President Obama.

5:31PM It’s like watching two code monkeys talking trash about their PHP code.

5:31PM Newt: I have a program.

5:32PM Ron: “They don’t know what they’re doing in Congress.”

Amen, brother. Amen.

5:33PM Ugh. Ron is defending his earmarks. John Effing McCain has a better record on earmarks than Ron Paul.

5:35PM To Rick : Why do you want to throw UAW workers out on the street?

And… Rick is speaking principle and process, when he should be explaining how the auto bailouts *hurt* GM and its workers.

5:36PM Mitt: I did or perhaps did not support the GM bailouts, which were done by GW Bush anyway.

5:37PM MItt: Also, I may or may not have supported TARP, which was done by GW Bush, anyway.

5:38PM MItt’s making a strong case for his position on GM. He’s wrong, but I’ve never heard it put so well.

Ron looks like he’s trying to swallow a turnip, whole.

5:39PM Newt: I have a program.

5:41PM Ron: “I don’t like the idea that you have good bailouts, and bad bailouts.”

Amen, brother. Amen.

5:42PM I believe the acronym “MEGO” was coined during a Ron Paul speech.

5:45PM What if I do have diabeedus, but I’m not on Medicare, however I do want to learn more about reverse mortgages?

5:46PM Birth control! Here we go! (Audience boos, having been denied their free condoms.)

5:47PM Newt: When it comes to birth control, I do not have a program.

I can’t joke anymore — Newt just reversed the question and asked why Obama was never asked in 2008 why he voted in favor of infanticide. He got wild applause.


5:48PM Whoa. Mitt’s emotion chip kicked in on this one. He is nearly 0.9% impassioned.

5:48PM I do believe Mitt just tore the roof off the mutha.

5:50PM Rick: What about “the dangers of contraception?”

Rick: There are too many babies born out of wedlock, so something must be done to reduce birth control.

In other news, CERN has just successfully divided by zero.

5:51PM Ron: Abolish stuff.

Amen, brother. Amen.

5:52PM Mitt: “This isn’t an argument about contraceptives.”

No, it should be an argument about the Obama Administration.

5:53PM Mitt: Will someone please get Steve to slow down on the martinis?

I might have misheard.

5:55PM Newt: I have a program.

5:57PM Ron: “We talk about the morning after pill…”

Why? Why are we talking about birth control, outside of the strictures and mandates of ObamaCare? THIS, this is why the GOP will lose if it can’t take back focus from Obama’s enablers in the MSM.

5:57PM Rick: If you don’t like big government, I’ve got a big government program to stop it.

5:59PM Santorum is getting booed again, like a stripper in a burkha.

6:01PM Mitt to Rick: But you TOLD Laura Ingraham you LIKED me.

6:02PM MItt is slapping Rick around with Arlen.

That’s an instance of Rule 34 I don’t want to think about.

6:03PM Wow. The MItt & Rick Show is getting like Punch and Judy, but without all the highfalutin intellectual stuff.

6:04PM MItt: Did I mention Arlen Specter?

6:05PM Aaaaaaand back to audience questions.

6:05PM “What will you do” to stop screwing AZ?

6:06PM Three million dollars a mile to secure the border?

Privatize the Gadsden Purchase and get it done for free.

6:07PM Aaaaand Ron entered the MEGO Zone yet again.

6:07PM Gov Perry is in the audience. He’s thinking, “I can’t believe I got creamed by these guys.”

6:08PM Newt: I have a program.

6:10PM To Mitt: “Tell me, Governor, how much do you hate Latinos?”

6:11PM Mitt: I hate Latinos less than anyone else on this stage, except for the ones who will impale themselves on my superfence, or get eaten by the alligators i my moat.”


6:12PM Rick: I hate Latinos great big bunches.

6:12PM Cooper: There are Latino Republicans, I swear! So why do you all hate Marco Rubio?

6:12PM Newt: I have a program.

6:13PM Barely mentioned so far tonight: President Barack Obama.

6:14PM Break time. I need this like you wouldn’t believe.

6:17PM OFFICIAL SPONSOR: Bags under my eyes by Louis Vuitton.

6:19PM Define yourself with one word.

6:20PM Do you care about the dumb fake answers? I don’t. But somebody said “resolute,” in honor of the President’s desk in the Oval Office.

6:21PM I can’t poke fun when anybody is talking about our men & women on the field of battle. So enjoy this brief VodkaPundit respite.

6:22PM Mitt: “The right course is to add ships to our Navy… ” and Army, Air Force, etc.

6:22PM Newt: I have a war program.

6:25PM Ron: “The problem is the character of our wars.”

No, bugnuts, the problem is the character of the people at war with us.

Also — the draft, really?

And the War on Terror is an “offensive” war?

Sir, you are too criminally dangerous to your own country to be let anywhere near the levers of power, which you would use, inadvertently, against your own countrymen.

6:25PM Rick:

I have no idea what he’s saying.

6:26PM Audience Question: How do you deal with growing nuclear threat from Iran?

6:26PM Newt: I have a pro-Israel program.

6:27PM Ron’s head just exploded.

6:28PM Cooper is trying to pin rising gas prices on Iran and neocons, which in no way advances the President’s agenda.

He swears.

6:29PM Mitt: Obama failed to cripple Iran “with sanctions.”

6:30PM Ron’s head just re-exploded.

6:30PM Rick: I’d blow up way more stuff in Iran than Mitt would.

6:32PM Ron: Iran is hunky-dory with me, and if they want a nuke it’s because of something we did.

Yes, Ron Paul is the battered wife of foreign policy.

6:37PM Rick: I hate stuff overseas because of Obama. Or something.

Meanwhile, I’m apologizing profusely for confusing — all evening — John King for Anderson Cooper. But all these white-haired CNN anchors look alike to me.


6:38PM Newt: I have an energy program. And it involved screwing China but not our allies, which doesn’t include Syria, which I’d bomb the stuff out of, but Obama wouldn’t because he’s like that.

This is why I’ve been short-handing Newt all night.

6:38PM Mitt: Obama is feckless. Also, Syria where Obama is feckless.

He’s right, of course.

6:40PM Ron: We’re playing into al Qaeda’s hand, because of the Jews.

Cripes, but I hate this guy sometimes.

6:40PM Audience question: “What is your stand on education and NCLB?”

6:41PM Rick: I was for NCLB before I was against it.

6:41PM Santorum just tried to Blame Bush for his NCLB vote.

If I wanted to vote for Obama, I’d vote for Obama.

Newt is smirking like the Grinch right now. I mean, more than usual.

6:43PM Mitt: NCLB bad, school choice good.

6:43PM NOTE TO SELF: John King, John King, John King.

6:44PM King John? What does this note say?

6:44PM Newt: I have a program.

6:47PM Ron: Rick Santorum is the problem.

Amen, brother. Amen.

6:47PM Final question up right after the break. And that question will come from JOHN KING.

That’s JOHN KING, not Anderson Cooper. JOHN KING.

6:51PM LAST QUESTION: Who sucks the least?

(I paraphrase.)

6:51PM Ron: I can win. I haven’t won anywhere, but I swear I can win.

6:52PM Newt: The public doesn’t understand that I have a program.

6:53PM Mitt: My circuitry does not permit an actual answer to the question.

6:54PM Rick: I need money.

6:55PM Longer Rick: Seriously, I need some money.

6:56PM And… that’s it. Summation to follow in shockingly short order.

6:57PM Hey — THAT guy on my screen is Anderson Cooper. CNN needs to hire some people of color if they ever want to beat MSNBC in un-whiteness.

7:08PM Twenty debates. I’ve drunkblogged 16, 17, 18 of them — and followed the remainder as closely as I could.

With all that in mind, there was one candidate sorely missing from tonight’s debate. And that man’s name is: Barack Obama.


There are two reasons for Obama’s omission.

First, we’re in the endgame of the GOP nomination process, so they’re going to go after each other like a cage full of male baboons with just one female in the cage with them.

Second, CNN and the rest of the MSM doesn’t want to hold an honest debate on the single most important issue at hand: Has Obama governed well?

While Obama maintains some nice likability numbers, pretty much everybody hates every little thing he’s actually done. But you wouldn’t know that from anything John King (not Anderson Cooper!) asked tonight.

My friend and coworker Bill Whittle maintains that the GOP is suicidal to uphold the pretense that the MSM is neutral in this contest, and should grant them their fatal pretense. Twenty debates later, I’m forced to conclude that Bill, for once, is overly optimistic. Panglossian, even. Tonight’s debate had as much to do with selecting a nominee — and directing that nominee towards November — as a Bourbon Street Mardi Gras flasher has to do with actual Catholicism.

Thanks for the enticing show, but… now what?

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