And not that I want you to leave, but Legal Insurrection is also live-blogging. I'm in and out over there, too.
As I hear it, Cain is going after Romney tonight. And Romney is riding high, I guess, after the endorsement by Christie. As Stacy says, RINOs run in herds.
So stay tuned. As bitchy as my mood has been, live-blogging of this debate ought to be fun.
Opening: Here's Charlie Rose setting things. up. Standard rules. I have the Rangers on the TV. Scores posted here too. Politics and baseball. All American! The live-stream on Bloomberg is weird. Sort of off-sync.
Herman Cain gets first go with an explanation of his 9-9-9 plan. The candidates are seated at a table this time. Maybe that'll help Perry not look so blustery. Perry announces some plan he "put out today" that nobody has heard of yet, it seems.
Romney taking the first shot at Obama. No executive experience, etc. Ugh. I just can't get enthusiastic about Mitt. He's so bland.
Perry is talking about opening up domestic energy production. "We've got to have a president that is willing to stand up and pull back those regulations...". Ah. Perry says Mitt has had six years to lay out a plan so he, Perry, hasn't had as much time to lay out a plan. Excuses.
Bachmann gets a question on Wall Street executives. She pushes back to the federal government who pushed sub-prime loans and the community reinvestment act. Barney Frank. Why does Romney always look smug?
I'll differ with Newt on the Tea Party comparison. I don't remember any Tea Party protesters getting arrested for defecating on police cars.
Newt is blasting the media again for not coming after the Fed.
To Santorum: What would you do RIGHT NOW to create jobs? "...a pro-manufacturing jobs plan." What IS that?
To Huntsman. He says we need to regain our industrial base. And now everyone is squabbling about who is the natural gas capital. All that means to me is that we need to drill more. Open exploration!
Back to Newt on Medicare: Half of all Medicare spending is done in the last two years of life. Heh- no wonder ObamaCare has death panels.
To Bachmann: Do you think that Americans are getting the most for their money in Medicare spending?
Bachmann - Medicare is going broke. We have to deal with it. "We asked Obama his plan", she says. Obama "mumbled" and didn't answer. Bachmann contends that Obama intends for Medicare to collapse so everyone will go into Obamacare. Good response from her.
Why is Huntsman here? What's the Rangers score? Rangers are up 1-0! First inning.
7:25: Huntsman: I thought 9-9-9 was the price of a pizza! Much laughter. Lame.
Cain wants to respond. "9-9-9 will pass and it's not the price of a pizza." He comes after Huntsman. Good for Cain! Good come back.
The question to Cain is who he goes to for political advice. "The American people" he says, and he lists well know economists. He says his 9-9-9 plan did not come off of a pizza box. Rich Lowrie is his lead economist.
The question to Romney is what would he do differently to avoid a financial crisis. He claims it's a hypothetical question yet says he would NOT call Geithner and ask him how the economy works. "Clearly if you think the entire financial system is about to collapse you take steps to keep that from happening." He says he is not interested in bailing out institutions.
"Would you or would you not be open to another Wall Street bailout?" No direct answer. The moderator is arguing with him. Now two moderators are arguing with him. Mitt says he would not keep Bernanke. "I'm not even sure I'm the nominee yet!" he exclaims. He uses Harvard and Columbia advisors. Of course.
Charlie Rose: "As far as you're concerned there is no institution too big to fail." Romney says bailouts of individual institutions do not interest him.
Newt jumps in. "We are not any better prepared today for a crisis of that scale..." because the same people are in charge.
Is Perry still there?
7:35: Ron Paul: "This whole system is all messed up." Dude.
Commercial break. Someone has gone to wake Perry up.
7:40: Out come the Reagan video clips. It's out of context on tax hikes. And Perry gets the first lob. Perry has read Reagan's diary. Perry seems to know this is out of context but can't articulate it well. He goes on to explain the problems in Washington. He gets a little applause with his advocacy of a balanced budget amendment.
To Romney: What if the super committee can't agree? Doesn't that demand a compromise? Romney says he can't tell by the clip what the rest of the context was. The answer, says Romney, is "to cut federal spending" and to have a balanced budget amendment and to get our economy going again. Get corporations investing in America again.
The third moderator pulls back to the video clip and cuts. Don't cut defense, says Romney. Don't raise taxes. Don't take more money from the American people so government can spend it. He puts the onus back on the super committee to get the economy going again. Applause. Rose is incredulous: "Without ANY increase in revenue?"
Newt interrupts. Classic. "They adopt a truly stupid bill" in which they say they'll either shoot themselves in the head or cut off their right leg. Wonderful!
I'm not sure that pointing out that she's a tax lawyer works much for Bachmann. Charllie Rose: "Cutting back on spending in your opinion will do it?" Incredulous again. He's so smug.
"That's ONE piece of the plan" she says.
Moderator to Cain: she questions the 9-9-9 plan and cites Bloomberg's analysis. Cain: "The problem with that analysis is that it is incorrect." Laughter. It makes assumptions we did not make, he says. "It expands the base," he explains. His plan does not pivot on the existing tax code. It's revenue neutral, he says. "Why should all Americans pay more" she asks. Hello? WTF? Why shouldn't all Americans pay taxes?
Bachmann: "The 9-9-9 plan isn't a jobs plan, it's a tax plan." She says it could lead to a VAT and it gives the feds a new revenue stream. OMG. "When you take the 9-9-9 plan and turn it upside-down, well, the devil is in the details." Did she really go there? Satan Jokes!
7:50: Huntsman is back on. Rangers are still 1-0.
I think the moderator is asking a question but she's talking waaayyyy tooooo long.
Perry eschews China questions and says "we need to get America workin' again!" And sounds like he's been practicing. Nice spiel.
Who in the hell is this David Cote with his video question? He needs a speech class.
All of a sudden the whole table has had triple shots of espresso and are firing off on ObamaCare and repeals.
8:05: My blog stats are so lame...why am I live-blogging this? Only 13 people have looked at my blog in the past hour.
Nekkid people coming up.
Did that work?
8:10: And they're back. Longest break evah.
This Bloomberg music is so freaking dramatic. Like the end of the world.
Now the candidates question each other. Oh boy.
Perry defends by saying Texas has the second lowest debt per capita in the United States. Point.
Cain is next. To Romney: Can you name all 159 points in your plan? Cain is touting the simplicity of his 9-9-9 plan. Romney tosses off a casual ha ha! and says simplicity is not always what is needed. Glib.
His answer is not simple and Cain points that out.
Newt is next. He asks Romney about his proposed capital gains tax cut for people under $250,000 which is "lower than Obama had." Romney says middle class Americans have been most hurt by Obama. Newt makes the point that people in that income bracket don't normally have capital gains in the first place, to speak of.
Huntsman. Rangers up 1-0 still. Top of the fourth.
8:20: I dislike the way Ron Paul pronounced "Fed." I can't even type it out phonetically. It's bizarre. Cain cautions Ron Paul about what he reads on the internet when Paul misquotes him. Cain says he does not object to the Fed being audited.
Cain is killing them with this 9-9-9 thing! Every answer is 9-9-9!
Romney gives a shout out for Christie in his ObamaCare answer - thanks for the endorsement buddy! Romney says less than 1% of the kids in his state are uninsured as opposed to Perry where LOTS are uninsured in Texas. Romney is standing by RomneyCare. He tries to draw the distinction but I'm not sure he's doing it.
LOL - Charlie Rose calls on Santorum who points out that Romney comes before Santorum. Romney: "You'd think someone from PBS would know that!" Laughter all around.
8:25: Now to Santorum. S after R. Is he asking a question? To Cain: Can we trust you, with your lack of experience, that you won't continue to give Washington a tool to take away our freedom? And Santorum points out that Cain supported TARP.
Cain says he's going to ask Congress to use a 2/3 majority vote before they can raise the 9-9-9 tax. The American people will hold their feet to the fire, and "I will be president," Cain says, and he won't sign anything that raises the 9-9-9 plan.
Cain is doing quite well. Santorum is spunkier than I've seen him. Perry is not helping himself - no major errors, just not much of a presence. Romney is just Romney, man...he's just glib and polished and I still don't feel any fire for him.
Dammit! Rangers tied at 1-1.
8:35: To Perry on health care. How are you different? This from Charlie Rose. All Perry can seem to say is "gettin' America back to work" to any question. "Get this country back workin' again," is his answer to everything.
Dead in the water.
Perry pronounced Bobby Jindal's name "Jin-DAHL"; that may be correct but I've never heard Jindal say it that way in any of his ads or press conferences. Jin-dle is how he says it. I thought they were buds. Wouldn't he know that?
Cain pronounces with "wif" - this bothers me. Speech class. Cain is looking to replace Bernanke "wif" someone he won't name yet. No hints.
To Ron Paul - since we're talking about the Fed. Cain liked Alan Greenspan, but Paul says he was "a disaster."
Greenspan was a bad answer for Cain. I'm with Paul on that one. God, did I just say I agree with Ron Paul?
"Bernanke compounds the problem," says Paul.
An audience question about opening up bank lending to small businesses. The question is to Romney who says Obama is "well meaning but in over his head." Disagree. Not at all sure he is "well meaning." Dude.
Bachmann - "The Dodd-Frank bill is the jobs and housing destruction act." She's talked to bankers who are going broke and losing money. Going under. "We will see literally thousands of banks close their door." She's the lone wolf again who proposed the bill to repeal Dodd-Frank.
To Cain again - "I agree - repeal Dodd-Frank and repeal the capital gains tax."
Shouldn't Newt chime in here somewhere? He's good on this.
But no. It's Ron Paul again.
A Solyndra question to Perry. "Do you think there were inadequate safeguards there" or is this just "the risk we run"? Perry says government has no place there; it's a states issue if they want to get involved in issues like this. Moderator interrupts and argues with him. Perry answers her adequately about what they do in Texas as far as oversight. No fire, no gains, just adequate.
She argues again about oversight. Perry: "Every one of those projects had the Lt. governor and the speaker" involved in oversight. Texas creates jobs. Got it. Texas creates jobs. Repeat six times.
Oh lordy. A George W. Bush video clip about more people in America owning homes than ever before. The question to Newt is if the American dream about owning a home is dead.
Newt jabs at Obama's malaise in his speeches. Good one. Newt - people need to get back to work so they can AFFORD to buy houses.
You mean owning a house isn't a "right"? The government doesn't have to buy me one?
This is a boring debate. Herman Cain is the only reason to watch this thing.
Rangers 1-1; Detroit on first and third.
8:45: Perry says people are in poverty because Obama is a job-killer. He has "over taxed and over regulated" so that employers are laying off people. Guess what he says? "Get Americans workin' again." We have to "replace Barack Obama." Applause.
Santorum jumps in and says a big problem is the break up of the American family. Santorum pleads for the strength of the American family and there's some random outburst in the audience. Bachmann is disoriented because of the outburst. Heckling. Rose continues. Awful.
They're trying to wrap this up. It's degenerated into a mess. Cain: "I was po' before I was poor." ? Seriously?
Ugh. Terrible debate.
The Rangers game is looking grim too. Detroit is up 2-1. I'm going over there now.
Thanks for hanging in.
Winner? Cain. No doubt.