GOP Debate Recap: Super Mitt Romney
Romney delivers smackdown to a subdued Gingrich in last Florida debate.
It’s a good thing former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney had his orange juice the morning of the final Florida presidential debate.
Well, we don’t know if he actually had OJ. Whatever Romney did – perhaps he hired a new debate coach – it definitely showed. His aggressive, quick-witted rebuttals to an uncharacteristically subdued Newt Gingrich were prominent throughout the debate.
It was clear early on that Romney is more popular in the Sunshine State than the former House Speaker. That, or the Romney campaign bussed in supporters from areas of Florida he’ll likely carry in next Tuesday’s primary. The latest national and state polls have Romney slightly ahead of Gingrich.
Former Pennsylvania senator Rick Santorum had a strong debate but, with his polling numbers so low, it won’t matter next Tuesday. Perhaps he’s working towards VP consideration. If so, Santorum's unrelenting attack of Romneycare during the debate isn't putting him at the top of “nominee” Romney’s short list.
Oh, and there’s the loveable “Grandpa” Ron Paul! It’s hard to imagine a debate without his even-keeled, almost nonchalant retorts. The Texas congressman delivered a few classic one-liners. Those laugh lines will have to hold us over – the next debate is almost a month away.
Here are the highlights:
Gingrich declares himself the second coming of Saint Ronald Reagan
Romney finally calls Gingrich out for blatant hypocrisy
Santorum eviscerates Romney on Massachusetts healthcare reforms
Debate producers catch Romney red-handed with attack ad
Ron Paul’s hilarious one-liners
On his age and health: “I’m willing to challenge any of these gentlemen up here to a 25-mile bike ride, anytime of the day, in the heat of Texas.” (VIDEO)
On Newt’s moon base idea: “I don’t think we should go to the moon. I think maybe we should send some politicians up there.” (VIDEO)
On a taking a White House call from Cuban leader: “I’d ask him what he called about.” (VIDEO)