NORTH CHARLESTON, S.C. (AP) — Here is the latest from the GOP presidential debates, sponsored by Fox Business Network, in North Charleston, S.C. All times local.
The first question of the prime-time GOP presidential debate is about jobs: President Barack Obama says the economy is durable and new jobs are being created. What do the Republican candidates see that he doesn’t?
The prime-time GOP presidential debate has begun, just over two weeks before the first votes are cast in the 2016 contest.
Billionaire real estate developer Donald Trump and Texas Sen. Ted Cruz are at the center of a shrinking field of top-tier candidates. Trump and Cruz are locked in battle for first place in the Feb. 1 Iowa caucuses.
Arrayed to the sides are five other rivals: Florida Sen. Marco Rubio, Ohio Gov. John Kasich, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson.
The undercard debate between Carly Fiorina, Mike Huckabee and Rick Santorum has concluded.
As for Rand Paul? He skipped the forum after being barred from the prime-time debate beginning at 9 p.m.
Instead, he’s inviting viewers to watch his national town hall online.
“The revolution will not be televised,” he tweeted. “Turn off your tv, watch the real discussion.”
Carly Fiorina is blazing out of the gate in her opening statement, delivering backhanded compliments to her two male rivals and a not-subtle swipe at Democratic front-runner Hillary Clinton for her husband’s infidelities.
She first said she is “honored” to be onstage with former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee and former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum, “two former Iowa caucus winners.” The clear implication: Neither man’s presidential ambitions have survived the nomination process, leaving them on the 2016 undercard stage in the lower tier of candidates.
Then she took a shot at the only other woman in the race, Clinton, the former secretary of state and wife of former President Bill Clinton.
Fiorina sniped, “Unlike another woman in this race, I actually love spending time with my husband.”
The debate between three of the lowest-polling GOP presidential candidates is underway at the North Charleston Coliseum. Onstage are former Hewlett-Packard CEO Carly Fiorina, former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee and former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum.
Not appearing: Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul, who was dropped from the prime-time lineup at 9 p.m. and refused to appear on the earlier forum.