Huckabee, I think, stood out in this debate as the one who made sense, talked as ordinary people do, and rose above politics. They may have scored. He connected. And that’s a problem for Romney, who would like to become the alternative to John McCain among conservatives who oppose the Arizona senator. But he has very tough competition from Huckabee, who’s forcing people to re-think his run at a time when he was supposed to be out of the game.
But this has always been the way he’s worked: Romney uses money to stay competitive. Huckabee has debates.
Ronald Reagan cast a long shadow over Wednesday night's debate. (Photo Credit: AP)
That was a good answer on Reagan’s legacy – he used it to introduce a very sly and effective reminder of Romney’s shifting positions.
– CNN Senior Political Analyst Bill Schneider
(CNN) – The four remaining Republican presidential candidates got down to the heart of the issues in Wednesday night’s CNN/LATimes/Politico debate moderated by Anderson Cooper.
A dozen undecided male and female Republican voters weighed in on the candidates' responses as the debate progressed.
The red line graph across the screen represents voter’s approval or disapproval of the candidates’ responses.
People meter: Watch Romney and McCain argue their conservative records
People meter: Watch the candidates compare themselves to Ronald Reagan
–CNN's Emily Sherman
This is one of the better answers for why a governor should become president I’ve ever heard - a very compelling and eloquent answer. This is how he scores points in debates - in this case, a well-spoken defense of federalism, a very deep Republican theme.
He simply speaks in terms people relate to. He makes sense.
Related: Watch Mike Huckabee and Ron Paul debate the Iraq war
SIMI VALLEY, California (CNN) - California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger will endorse John McCain's presidential bid at an event in California Thursday, two GOP sources confirm to CNN.
Earlier: Sources say Schwarzenegger in talks to endorse McCain
– CNN Chief National Correspondent John King
McCain gets in a sly dig at Romney, suggesting he’s put people out of work. It’s similar to a line Huckabee’s used in anti-Romney ads: you want to vote for the guy who creates jobs, not the one who lays you off.
McCain is taking on Rudy Giuliani’s role - assuming the terrorism issue. In short: I will protect you.
Meanwhile, Romney’s argument that a governor is by definition a leader – and a senator, by definition, is not – strikes me as very false. And Romney’s answer on the commander-in-chief question, lauding military experience, raises the question: why didn’t he serve in the armed forces?
It’s not clear exactly what Romney’s talking about – but there’s an interesting idea somewhere in here. It’s the most intellectually interesting answer I’ve heard this evening: that there are four strategic visions in the world: Russia, China, Al Qaeda and the United States. I’m not sure I understand it, but it’s worth thinking about.
WASHINGTON (CNN) –In Wednesday’s Republican presidential debate, there was a sense of Ronald Reagan in the air, and it wasn’t just because of Air Force One in the background. Place four Republican candidates on stage in Ronald Reagan’s library, and the former president’s name is bound to come up at least once or twice. In Mitt Romney’s case, he referenced the former president nineteen times.
The Ticker kept track of how many times each candidate mentioned Reagan’s name:
Mike Huckabee: 7
Mitt Romney: 19
John McCain: 8
Ron Paul: 3
- CNN's Alex Spanos
That was a very strange answer from McCain. Americans are not being killed in South Korea or Germany – they are in Iraq. I didn’t understand it, and I don’t think most viewers will either.
Meanwhile, Huckabee is sounding like Mr. Straight Talk.