3rd Republican Presidential Debate Recap: A Clash in Colorado

Republican presidential candidates, from left, John Kasich, Mike Huckabee, Jeb Bush, Marco Rubio, Donald Trump, Ben Carson, Carly Fiorina, Ted Cruz, Chris Christie, and Rand Paul take the stage during the CNBC Republican presidential debate at the University of Colorado, Wednesday, Oct. 28, 2015, in Boulder, Colo. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

Republican presidential candidates, from left, John Kasich, Mike Huckabee, Jeb Bush, Marco Rubio, Donald Trump, Ben Carson, Carly Fiorina, Ted Cruz, Chris Christie, and Rand Paul take the stage during the CNBC Republican presidential debate at the University of Colorado, Wednesday, Oct. 28, 2015, in Boulder, Colo. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

By Shaynah Ferreira 10/29/2015
The Republican presidential field gathered for the 3rd GOP debate of the 2016 campaign Wednesday night. The top 10 leading candidates hit the stage for over two hours at The University of Colorado Boulder, and it was nothing short of interesting seeing other Republican contenders such as Marco Rubio and Ted Cruz showing stronger debate performances on this road to The White House.

Highlight Overview of Candidates:

A clash between former Gov. Jeb Bush and Sen. Marco Rubio showed they were willing to fight for attention on the debate stage. Retired neurosurgeon, Ben Carson, the now GOP front-runner stuck to his soft-spoken position but to many viewers surprise, there wasn’t much of a show for the now 2nd runner in the race, Donald Trump.

Ted Cruz saw a moment for him to shine on stage and carefully prepared his responses to proposed questions. Cruz’s breakout moment by attacking the liberal media caused an applause that resonated through the entire room. His moment set the theme for the debate and post-debate questioning with his commentary against the CNBC moderators and the media, in general, saying, “These questions illustrate why the American people don’t trust the media. This is not a cage match.”

Rubio and Bush have had tensions since both are vying for the same traditional Republican donors. Bush attempted to attack Rubio but was not prepared for Rubio’s quick response citing the fact that the former Florida governor was only attacking him because he was “behind in the polls.”

Even following Trump’s criticism of Bush being, “too low energy” to be president. The former Governor of Florida seemed to fade into the background as each of the candidates took every opportunity to be heard. In an interview following up post-debate with CNN’s Dana Bash, Bush said, “I’m running for president. If they are looking for an entertainer in chief, I’m not the guy.”

Donald Trump seemed quieter than he normally is on debate stages since much of the focus seemed to be on Bush, Cruz and Rubio. Trump was also asked fewer questions than in the first GOP debate. One of Trump’s most memorable moments on stage was his use of legal bankruptcy saying, “boy, am I good at solving debt problems.”

For Ben Carson, viewers saw a significant shift from the first GOP Debate to the 3rd where he meekly said, “I wasn’t sure I was going to get to talk again.” In this debate, moderators made sure to take a closer look at the front-runner and his policy proposals. Carson said he would like to have an across-the-board tax rate of 15% and get rid of all loop holes and tax deductions if he were the president.

CNBC Moderators did not skip questioning Carson regarding his involvement with a medical supplement company called Mannatech that has run into some recent legal scrutiny. Carson has appeared in promotions for the company and called it “absurd” to say he has a relationship with the company. The moderator proceeded to imply the front-runner was weak on his “vetting process” which resounded in a collective “boo.”