GOP Debate Recap: A Big Waste of Time without Trump
As Donald Trump chose to forego the initial 2024 Republican presidential primary debate, his eight primary contenders – most sporting
As Donald Trump chose to forego the initial 2024 Republican presidential primary debate, his eight primary contenders – most sporting ties reminiscent of his signature bright red one – engaged in a vigorous battle for the coveted second-place position on Wednesday evening.
Taking center stage alongside Florida Governor Ron DeSantis was 38-year-old entrepreneur and political novice Vivek Ramaswamy, who played a pivotal role throughout the event. Ramaswamy found himself entangled in exchanges with former Vice President Mike Pence over experience, former South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley on foreign policy, and former New Jersey Governor Chris Christie over Trump’s legacy, among others.
Positioning himself as a staunch defender of Trump, Ramaswamy often stood in as a surrogate for the former president. Although Trump momentarily yielded the spotlight on Wednesday night, he will reclaim it on Thursday when he surrenders himself to the Fulton County jail in Georgia to face charges of election subversion.
The Republican candidates’ debate, featuring former biotech executive Vivek Ramaswamy, former Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson, former New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, former Vice President Mike Pence, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, former South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley, U.S. Senator Tim Scott (R-SC), and North Dakota Governor Doug Burgum, unfolded in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, on August 23, 2023.
While the two-hour spectacle was replete with fiery clashes, it seemed more like an undercard event. Despite his legal troubles, Trump has maintained an overwhelming lead in the polls, and the occurrences of Wednesday night are unlikely to upend the course of the race.