GREENVILLE, S.C., Feb. 13 (Gephardt Daily) — In a rare moment of unity, Republicans unanimously agreed that President Obama should “not” appoint a replacement for Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, who died Saturday.
“I just wish we hadn’t run so fast into politics,” Ohio Gov. John Kasich said. “I really wish the president would think about not nominating somebody.”
“I fully agree that we should not allow a justice to be appointed during his time,” Dr. Ben Carson said.
“The Senate needs to stand up and say: we’re not going to give up the U.S. Supreme Court for a generation by allowing Obama to appoint another liberal justice,” said Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas.
Trump and Bush get heated over Iraq war
Trump was asked about 2008 remarks he made calling for the impeachment of George W. Bush. Trump fell short of saying he stood by the sentiment.
“Obviously the war in Iraq is a big fat mistake,” he shouted over boos from the crowd. “There were no weapons of mass destruction.”
“I’m sick and tired of Barack Obama blaming my brother for all the problems that he’s had,” Jeb Bush responded, turning his attention to Trump. “While Donald Trump was on a reality TV show, my brother was building a security apparatus to keep us safe.”
Trump interrupted. “The World Trade Center came down on his watch,” he said as the crowd erupted in boos.
Bush went on to praise his family, starting with his dad, former President George H.W. Bush. When he got to discussing his mother, Trump cut in again.
“She should be running,” the real estate mogul quipped. More boos. Trump repeated a claim from the last debate that the boos were coming from “special interests” and donors of Bush’s campaign.
After bemoaning the fighting onstage, Kasich weighed in. “I don’t believe the United States should involve itself in civil wars,” he said “We should go to war when it is in our direct interest; we should not be policemen of the world.”
Rubio was then asked for his take. “I thank God all the time that it was George W. Bush in the White House on 9/11 and not Al Gore,” he said, to thundering applause.
“The World Trade Center came down; how is that keeping us safe?” Trump asked, eliciting more boos, to the point where he could not be heard over them.
Cruz and Rubio spar on immigration once again
Rubio and Cruz’s disagreements on comprehensive immigration reform in the Senate have been played up in previous debates, but things were more tense than ever before Saturday.
“To argue he’s a purist on immigration is just not true,” Rubio said when Cruz accused him of supporting “amnesty.”
“Marco right here supports citizenship for 12 million people here illegally,” Cruz said. “Marco went on Univision in Spanish and said he would not rescind Obama’s executive order on immigration one he got into office.”
“I don’t know how Ted knows what I said because he doesn’t speak Spanish,” Rubio fired back.
“En Español, sí te quieres,” Cruz shouted back, meaning “In Spanish, if you want.”
Moderators tried to calm things, moving to Bush and asking about previous remarks Bush had made saying people immigrate to the United States illegally “as an act of love.”
“They’re not all rapists as you-know-who said,” referring to Trump. “We should show a little more respect,” to undocumented people, while supporting increased border security.
“He’s so weak on immigration, it’s unbelievable,” Trump said.
“You want to talk about weakness? It’s weak to disparage women,” Bush retorted, as Trump shook his head. “It’s weak to disparage Hispanics.”
Cruz and Trump squabble over Planned Parenthood
Cruz alleged that Trump supported federal funding for Planned Parenthood, and to Trump, that was the last straw.
“You are the single biggest liar,” Trump shouted. “This guy will say anything, nasty guy, now I know why he doesn’t have a single endorsement from one of his friends.”
“Donald did not disagree with the substance,” Cruz replied. “When you point to his record he screams ‘liar liar.'”
“Where did I say it, Ted?” Trump shouted. Cruz accused Trump of saying Planned Parenthood did “wonderful things.”
“It does do wonderful things, but not as it relates to abortion,” Trump shouted back to some boos from the audience. Trump did tell CNN over the summer that he supports Planned Parenthood for providing other services, like contraception, but called the group “an abortion factory.”