The 2016 election is officially underway with a crucial milestone: the first debate. The Republican primary debates bring a slew of insane quotes as the candidates clamor to be heard and get attention from voters who haven't yet decided which of the 10 top Republicans to vote for. Volleying character slams and attacks on past policy, these guys certainly know how to make dramatic television.
Not even the candidates' forum at 5 p.m., which gave the candidates with the lowest poll scores the chance to fight it out, was safe. Rick Santorum, Bobby Jindal, Carly Fiorina, Rick Perry, George Pataki, Jim Gilmore, and Lindsey Graham were happy to start the night with the barbs and quips to warm the stage up for the main event.
With some of the most volatile candidates of the past several presidential elections, the first debate was sure to be a sharp free-for-all. However, as no one can predict what will come out of the mouth of Donald Trump, no one knew what kind of wise nuggets, insults, offensive comments, and below-the-belt jabs the debate would hold. For the highlights, here are some of the most enlightening quotes from Thursday night's cage match of Republican presidential candidates:
“The thing that is perhaps most important is having a brain."
Yes, Ben Carson thinks that the most important requirement for being president is possessing the proper anatomy.
“I think the big problem this country has is being politically correct.”
When asked if he was part of the war on women, Trump reproached political correctness.
“Everybody across this country knows that the tsunami of drugs is threatening their family."
Although this weather comparison is a little extreme, this was part of John Kasich's response to a question about why he expanded Medicaid as governor. He responded that he was helping to treat the mentally ill and those facing addictions outside the prison system.
“I don’t mind having a big, beautiful door in that wall."
Trump expressed the need for a huge wall at the border. He made the comment about putting a door in so that people could come into the United States legally.
“We’ve gotten in the mindset of fighting politically correct wars."
Carson said he didn't support getting involved in "stupid" wars.
“I didn’t know her money would be used on jets flying all over the world."
Trump has received a lot of criticism for donating to the Clintons.
“Let’s start off with my father being a mailman."
John Kasich was asked how he would argue with Clinton, who would probably argue that he was associated with the upper class. He used his father to connect to the middle class.
“They wanted someone who aimed high, not aimed low."
Scott Walker did not live up to the economic promises he made in Wisconsin. His response to this question states the obvious.
“The trust fund is filled with IOUs."
Chris Christie was quick to condemn the social security system.
“Because somebody doesn’t think the way I do doesn’t mean I can’t care about them or love them. If one of my daughters happened to be that, of course I would love them and accept them."
Although "that" is not the most flattering way to describe members of the LGBTQ community, it took a certain amount of bravery for Kasich to make a statement about acceptance at a GOP event.
“I’m the only one who operates on Siamese twins"
Is this part of Carson's platform? He said that he was the only one who performed these surgeries but hoped he wasn't the only one to pick up "the baton of freedom."