Debate Recap

Despite the fact that my day job is a political reporter, I’ve had a hard time getting up the energy to follow the numerous debates and even, to some extent, the campaign. But I’m increasingly fascinated by the campaign that’s unfolding and last night, I flipped back and forth between the Cubbies getting a much-needed win over LA and the Republican debate at the University of New Hampshire. Michael Scherer’s got a good recap here.

Two thoughts: Ron Paul’s a pretty brave dude to stand up in front of that crowd and defend his position that the Iraq war is a war of aggression (true!) and that as president he’d abolish the CIA.

Immigration is going to be Giuliani’s achilles heel, and the longer he’s the front runner, the more intense the attacks on him are going to be. The problem for Giuliani is that his “tough on crime” and 9/11 performance give him credibility in “Kicking the Ass of the Other,” which is absolutely essential for Republican primary voters. But his record on immigration makes him seem like a mollycoddler, the very opposite of the ass-kicker. So it was pretty awesome to see him contort himself to try to explain away a 1994 quote saying he wanted undocumented immigrants to come and work in New York City, as a crime-fighting device. It would be like a Republican governor who had expanded welfare trying to get himself off the hook with the red meat crowd by explaining that he was expanding welfare so as to induce welfare recipients to offer up tips on the whereabouts of suspected terrorists who could then be detained and tortured.

Chris Hayes is the host of All In with Chris Hayes on MSNBC.

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