Republican Debate: Winners and Losers
The first Republican presidential debate was a wild affair, with the eight candidates trading barbs and insults.
- Vivek Ramaswamy: The political newcomer stole the show, easily fending off swipes from his fellow candidates and positioning himself as the outsider against the establishment.
- Mike Pence: The former vice president showed that he still has some fight left in him, going on the attack early and defending his decision to certify the 2020 election results.
- Nikki Haley: The former South Carolina governor surprised many by offering sharp criticism of both Trump and the Republican Party.
- Ron DeSantis: The Florida governor sagged in the polls before the debate, and his performance did nothing to help him. He was overshadowed by Ramaswamy and other candidates.
- Asa Hutchinson and Doug Burgum: The two long-shot candidates failed to make a significant impression on the debate stage.
The debate was a mixed bag for Trump, who was booed by the crowd and criticized by some of his rivals. However, he still remains the frontrunner for the Republican nomination.
Ramaswamy’s strong performance could help him raise his profile and attract more donors. Pence’s debate could help him win over evangelical voters. And Haley’s criticism of Trump could appeal to moderate Republicans.
The race for the Republican nomination is still wide open, and the next few debates will be crucial in shaping the field.