Being one of the seven “undercard” candidates for the Fox News Republican primary debate must be hard: Not only are you relegated to a 5 p.m. early debate with minimal live audience, but the moderators apparently feel more inclined to humiliate you.
The first round of questions for each candidate in the lower-six debate all followed a common theme: Why are you even here? Who cares about you?
Here’s what moderators Martha MacCallum and Bill Hemmer asked each candidate, delivering the brutal questions with their signature TV smiles and mellifluous voices.
Rick Perry: “You were in charge of the 12th-largest economy in the world. You recently said four years ago that you weren’t ready for this job. Why should someone vote for you now?” [Daaaaamn.]
Carly Fiorina: “You were CEO of Hewlett-Packard. You ran for Senate and lost in California in 2010. This week, you said, Margaret Thatcher was not content to manage a great nation in decline and neither am I. Given your current standings in the polls, is the Iron Lady comparison a stretch?” [Woooooof.]
Rick Santorum: “You won the Iowa caucus four years ago and ten other states. But you failed to beat Mitt Romney for the nomination. And no one here tonight is going to question your conviction or your love for country. But has your moment passed, senator?” [**Rap airhorn blares**]
Bobby Jindal: You’re one of two sitting governors on the stage tonight. But your approval numbers at home are in the mid-30s at this point. In a recent poll that showed you in a head-to-head against Hillary Clinton in Louisiana, she beat you by several points. So if the people of Louisiana are not satisfied, what makes you think that the people of this nation would be?” [TKO!]
Lindsey Graham: “You’ve worked with Democrats and President Obama when it came to climate change — something you know is extremely unpopular with conservative Republicans. How can they trust you based on that record?” [Did he just call you a traitor?!?!]
George Pataki: “Four years ago this month you called it quits in a race for the presidency in 2012. But now you’re back. Mitt Romney declined to run this time because he believed that the party needed new blood. Does he have a point?” [Translation: You old.]
Jim Gilmore: “You were the last person on stage to declare your candidacy. You ran for the White House once and lost. You ran for the Senate one time and lost. You haven’t held public office in 13 years. Similar question, is it time for new blood?” [Or, more bluntly: Why are you here?]
Watch the questions below:
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