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Eighteen days away from the Iowa caucus last night's Republican debate with the presidential candidates -- last chance at a face to face confrontation and boy did they confront.
Here to bring down the good the bad and the ugly and what it means for the 2012 race Republican strategist and Fox News contributor Ed Rollins Ed welcome back to the show pleasure.
We were just talking in the break about Gingrich in new really taking it on the chin this debate how to -- perform.
You know I think he was a little unnerved in the beginning of the debate I think by the second hour he was back -- You know that they knew some very Smart guy he's been in government for twenty years knows more about government than anybody.
But I don't think it was -- -- debates what he had to defend himself on the basis of whether he was conservative enough or not here's what he had to say.
First tax cut in sixteen years largest capital gains tax cut in American history -- -- came down to four point 2% pretty conservative.
I think on the conservative thing.
It's sort of laughable to suggest that somebody who campaigned when Ronald Reagan and with Jack -- And has -- a thirty year record of conservatism.
Is somehow not a conservative.
I think it's an interesting question -- -- conservative -- announce another interest in question is has he already peaked what do you think.
I think you may -- guy I still think he's a very credible candidate and he could be one of the one of a finalist here.
But it but this is the week in which he was inevitable nominee you know long resident mommy's gonna -- when.
And I think -- at the moment about the you know had a great night was Michelle Bachmann she was highly articulate and especially in battling -- -- you make -- our -- -- had two or three good debates back to back in last night was -- -- by far she really knows the foreign policy.
I thought she -- Paul -- that come -- relevant to this Iranian position.
I think she took nude on very effectively.
It you know unfortunately she doesn't have all the other pieces and she -- have the money could go away but she had a great performance last night and certainly help yourself.
Romney also had a great night I want to hear one of his sides sit and tell me how you think he did.
Basement room this economy.
Has every potential to continue to lead the world our president thinks America's in decline is if he's president.
It's not a -- president this is going to be an American said.
And that goes to something that I think it has gotten under a lot of American scans in watching President Obama over the last couple years it's clear that he thinks.
You know it's time to kind of step back as a country maybe we shouldn't be the world superpower the big leader.
What do you think of Romney is he really taking that issue on an -- Smart way he is because the country's desperate for -- -- to country wants someone -- the cheerleader force they don't want us to basically sit around saying -- year is -- in this -- great.
Don't wanna say is this country is great and I want to make it better for the kids that come along.
That's who owns an amount are you getting any closer to figure out -- you like best.
I like the person who's gonna win.
I can't I can't do that analysis -- -- sitting -- -- -- that have a favorite.
I think they were all Smart and I think what they did last night.
Is they kind of reinforced their base no one really was a loser last night and I even even the Governor Perry who I think scaling back -- the game a little bit here.
Well let's hear from Rick Perry he had he got a -- -- applause line early on.
There are a lot of people out there understand -- you know -- lot of folks have said Tim Tivo.
-- going to be a very good today NFL quarterback had their people -- that and say well he doesn't have the right throwing.
Mechanisms -- again you know he's not play in the game right let me tell you if I hope I am the -- -- of the I would call.
Is that possible compared and that.
Going to be concerned -- we thought last week it was Gingrich it could be both of these guys and at the end of the day you know and in a month we'll know that.
The one is but he's got money he's good resources he's a Smart.
He won nine straight graces you know people forget about that he's a better retail politician and he is the -- and and see that now the next eighteen days.
I love the debates I felt like I really got to know the candidates very wealth I know they're sort of controversy and now -- some people saying we don't need more of them I thought they were.
-- they should not be controversy what they did as they gave people.
There are three or four people on stage would never Neal we'll play the game that -- -- resources Michelle Bachmann being one Santorum being and other.
You know that and they don't have the money could put these spending millions of dollars on commercials so they'd -- got to get a real flavor of them and I think to a certain extent and made.
For better party -- assistants -- -- debates of issues.
Romney now leading -- the polling for the Iowa Republican caucus a 23%.
Gingrich down at 20%.
Do you think that.
-- rock ribbed Republicans will get behind Romney some of them have seen him as too liberal.
Well well I mean I think he's I think he's performing well on these debates at the end of the day you know -- you don't need 40% to win you maybe twenty five's going to be enough to win.
And because of the votes can be spotted it's scattered and splattered and they had eight kids -- -- -- -- And I think at the end of the day you know people forget the Mike Huckabee.
Liberal documents and the religious he had 45% of the religious right and he -- 40000 votes Romney at 30000.
Well good analysis okay.
Appreciate your time -- pleasure thank you so much.
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