The Republicans' 11th Debate

Insults flew during what theSkimm called the "1,000,000th GOP debate." Hosted by Fox News, the debate included the last four standing candidates: Donald Trump, Ted Cruz, Marco Rubio, and John Kasich. Here's part 1:


After Trump's boycott of the previous debate, he and moderator Megyn Kelly started out on a better note:

"Mr. Trump. Hi. How are you doing?" Kelly said.

"Hi Megyn. You're looking well," Trump said.

BusinessInsider listed a few highlights of the debate, which I appreciate because I don't have the stomach for barbs about hair styles and body parts. Some clips relevant to communication follow:

9:18 p.m. EST - Trump dodged a question from Wallace about why some of his clothing line was made in Mexico instead of the US. Instead, Trump went after Rubio's assertion that the former reality-television star inherited $200 million from his father.

"This little guy has lied so much about my record," Trump said.

9:21 p.m. EST - Rubio slammed Trump for resorting to ad hominem attacks instead of addressing questions about policy. 

"You see what happens again when you challenge him on a policy issue?" Rubio said. "You ask him about economic issues, and he the first thing he does is launch into this thing about 'little Marco.'"

"He doesn't have answers and he's asking to be president of the United States."

10:23 p.m. EST -Rubio criticized Democrats for "politicizing" the water crisis in Flint, Michigan.

"The politicizing of it is unfair," Rubio said of the water crisis. "Because I don't think someone woke up some morning and said 'Let's poison people.'"

Discussion Starters:

  • Assess the three examples above. How well did the candidates respond to the question or handle the issue?
  • What do you consider to be the high points-and low points-of the debate?
  • Who do you think "won" the debate?
  • What, if any, influence will this debate have on the rest of the primary elections?