During the CNN hosted debate, Fiorina held Trump accountable for an earlier remark that was perceived to be negative about her face.
“I think women all over this country heard very clearly what Mr. Trump said” Fiorina explained.
Trump responded by complimenting Fiorina and described her as a “beautiful woman” but the former reality TV star and billionaire has some history of ruffling feathers and got into hot water with another woman, Fox host Megyn Kelly, following the previous Republican debate concerning his blood comments about her in his Twitter rants.
During the debate, Trump relied again on personal attacks and managed to make fun of Rand Paul’s appearance after he said, “I never attacked him on his look, and believe me, there’s plenty of subject matter right there.”
Later in the evening, Jeb Bush demanded that Trump apologize over comments he made about Bush having a “soft spot” for people from Mexico because of his wife who is Mexican-American.
Trump refused to apologize but described Bush’s wife as a “lovely person.”
At the opening of the debate, Fiorina dodged the host’s question about whether she felt comfortable with Donald Trump’s finger on the nuclear codes.
Trump interestingly responded by fiercely attacking Republican candidate Rand Paul, saying that he shouldn’t even be on the debate stage and then mocked him for being number 11.
“Well, first of all, Rand Paul shouldn’t even be on this stage. He’s number 11, he’s got 1 percent in the polls, and how he got up here, there’s far too many people anyway” Trump said.
“As far as temperament — and we all know that — as far as temperament, I think I have a great temperament. I built a phenomenal business with incredible, iconic assets, one of the really truly great real-estate businesses” Trump boasted.
Rand Paul called Trump out for his “sideway attack” on him and questioned his judgment when called upon to work with world leaders.
“Do we want someone with that kind of character, that kind of careless language to be negotiating with Putin? Do we want someone like that to be negotiating with Iran?” Paul questioned.
“I think really there’s a sophomoric quality that is entertaining about Mr. Trump, but I am worried. I’m very concerned about him — having him in charge of the nuclear weapons, because I think his response, his — his visceral response to attack people on their appearance — short, tall, fat, ugly — my goodness, that happened in junior high. Are we not way above that? Would we not all be worried to have someone like that in charge of the nuclear arsenal?” Paul questioned.
Nearly all of the Republican candidates except for Rand Paul criticized the Iran nuclear deal.
Ted Cruz came out the strongest against the deal and said that he would tear it apart.
“If I am elected president, on the very first day in office, I will rip to shreds this catastrophic Iranian nuclear deal.” Cruz said.
Rand Paul was the most balanced and sensible when questioned about how to deal with Iran.
“Should we continue to talk with Iran? Yes. Should we cut up the [Iran nuclear] agreement immediately? That’s absurd. Wouldn’t you want to know if they complied? Now, I’m going to vote against the agreement because I don’t think there’s significant leverage, but it doesn’t mean that I would immediately not look at the agreement, and cut it up without looking to see if whether or not Iran has complied” Paul said.
Russia and Syria
When Trump was asked about what he would do to get Russia out of Syria, he advocated for less military intervention and questioned why the U.S. is even fighting ISIS in Syria.
Trump said that ISIS should fight the Syrian military and then the U.S. can “pick up the remnants.”
“Syria’s a mess. You look at what’s going on with ISIS in there, now think of this: we’re fighting ISIS. ISIS wants to fight Syria. Why are we fighting ISIS in Syria? Let them fight each other and pick up the remnants.” Trump said.
Later in the debate, Trump displayed a more hawkish tone and criticized President Obama for not having enough courage in Syria concerning the red line that was crossed with Assad.
“Somehow, he just doesn’t have courage. There is something missing from our president. Had he crossed the line and really gone in with force, done something to Assad — if he had gone in with tremendous force, you wouldn’t have millions of people displaced all over the world” Trump said.
When asked about how to deal with Russian President Vladimir Putin, Trump explained that he would talk to Putin and would get along with him.
Concerning Putin, Carly Fiornia said that she would send a few thousand more troops into Germany and then begin rebuilding the Sixth Fleet, rebuilding the missile defense program in Poland, and conduct regular, aggressive military exercises in the Baltic states.
“Russia is a bad actor, but Vladimir Putin is someone we should not talk to, because the only way he will stop is to sense strength and resolve on the other side, and we have all of that within our control.” Fiornia said.
Marco Rubio said that Russia’s Putin is trying to destroy NATO and is “exploiting a vacuum that this administration has left in the Middle East.”
“What he is doing is he is trying to replace us as the single most important power broker in the Middle East, and this president is allowing it” Rubio added.