January 30th, 2008
09:34 PM ET
10 years ago

People meter: undecided voters weigh in


Watch voters weigh in on the most heated moments of the debate.

(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

soundoff (60 Responses)
  1. John

    Can't help but agree with you Brian. It was a shame Paul and Huckabee were so disriminated against in regards to their question time. I'm a big Ron Paul fan myself, but after watching his performance tonight I am starting to fear that he unfortunately lacks the political tact to ultimately win. The beauty of Ron Paul is his principles and truth; however, he is so much of a purist that his timing and delivery is off in such a critical forum that is the remaining debates. Maybe his rushed and unbalanced delivery is due to his fear of not getting to answer any more questions! With that said, I totally agree if given the time he could equal any of the remaining candidates on debating the issues. Wow... McCain almost put me to sleep tonight.

    January 30, 2008 11:10 pm at 11:10 pm |
  2. maxine

    McCain may have achieved great things for the country, but what has he done for his state of Arizona???? I live there and let me tell you a few things:

    Global warming: 79% of the state does not and will not recycle anything, everything goes in dump.

    Minimum wage: Right to work state-an employer can pay you $1 an hour; it's a right to work.

    Medical is prehistoric.

    Education-49th in country-college's scrape to keep going, and still have a 10% cut in their budget yearly. So much for no child left behind.


    Yes, I know it is not all the Senator's fault, but ask again what has he one for this state.

    January 30, 2008 11:19 pm at 11:19 pm |
  3. z doko

    Ron Paul R3VOLUTION. Give us back our Constitution.

    January 30, 2008 11:19 pm at 11:19 pm |
  4. Bob,Palm Springs Ca.

    To Brian all I can say is Amen, Amen.
    It's really great to know that there is someone out there that really GETS IT!
    There's not a single point that you brought up that I don't absolutely agree with a 110%, if that were at all possible.
    I've said from the beginning that the one Candidate that has stood out in every single debate was Ron Paul for the Republicans and John Edwards for the Democrats but have you ever seen any of the Media News Outlets even focus in on that, not CNN, not MSNBC, and not FOX.
    If you checkout the Candidate that in every debate the PEOPLE choose as winning the debate you will see that Ron Paul was always the winner in the Republican Debates and John Edwards in the majority of the Democratic Debates.
    But as usual not a word on the networks referencing that fact.
    I'm just wondering when more Americans are going to wake up to the fact that we no longer can consider ourselves as a Democracy type of government but now with a "World Economy" we are and will be from now on a "CORPOCRACY" form of government. We will with the media's help always be Voting between in the General Election the Candidate from each Major Party that the BIG CORPORATIONS have made very sure are their Party's choice, which means it will remain "BUSINESS AS USUAL". Our elections now are becoming an exercise in frutility and just a big show for the rest of the World.

    January 30, 2008 11:22 pm at 11:22 pm |
  5. brad

    Here is my official question count:
    Romney: 19
    McCain: 17
    Hucakbee: 10
    Paul: 6

    Times I screamed at CNN to be more fair to candiates Huckabee and Paul: 10,000

    CNN – you should be ashamed! "Shower of questions?" Ridiculous. Your bias is more than evident, it is disgraceful during such an important run for president.

    January 30, 2008 11:23 pm at 11:23 pm |
  6. Connie

    I was truly disappointed to see a childish and petty argument be allowed so much airtime. Is this the Jerry Springer show? Please allow all the debaters the same amount of time to speak. Thank you.

    January 30, 2008 11:25 pm at 11:25 pm |
  7. King

    what a pathetic debate, why did you invite Ron Paul and Mike huckabee if you were not gonna let them speak.
    Ron pauls speaks the truth and you are affraid to let america hear the truth.
    america is waking up and we know the game you are playing, trying to force a bitter pow (not a war hero) and an elitest puppet down our throats.

    anderson i hope they paid you very well for your treason agaist the american people. and i hope the rest of america understands that this race is not over, lots of states to go. Dont be fooled by the bias in the media, you decide not them.

    Ron Paul 2008

    January 30, 2008 11:26 pm at 11:26 pm |
  8. Bob,Palm Springs Ca.

    Brian I hope you meant embaressed and not embraced.
    Because I choose to read that word in the 1st sentence as EMBARESSED and felt that was more of what you meant. It's ashame that they don't allow us to "Edit".

    January 30, 2008 11:29 pm at 11:29 pm |
  9. Jen

    Thank you everyone, my husband & I have been asking ourselves what is wrong with this country due to MCCain is old & cannot answer any question except if it has to do with the war. Our country is in trouble, we need someone who can get us out of this mess!!!! PLEASE DO NOT LET IT BE MCCAIN if so we will move to another country. All the comments are great on this board, I am so glad that people see the same way we do. Thank you

    January 30, 2008 11:29 pm at 11:29 pm |
  10. Gary

    I'm a retiree (25 years in the USN) and loss my trust and confidence in Senator McClain as a leader.

    January 30, 2008 11:34 pm at 11:34 pm |
  11. Steve Smith

    It was clear tonight that McCain should NOT be the Republican nominee. He's a one-trick pony (national security), has trouble with focus, and is a typical politician as demonstrated tonight on several occasions (changing the subject and misrepresenting Romney's quote about timetables). Huckabee did very well also, especially given the small fraction of airtime he had to work with. And thank God for Paul who is there to elevate the entire discussion one sentance at a time. I hope the GOP wakes up and dumps McCain. He'd be slaughtered by either Democrat. Romney could win the White House.

    January 30, 2008 11:42 pm at 11:42 pm |
  12. Gene

    Romney was the clear winner...concise and a leader.

    GO MITT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    January 31, 2008 12:57 am at 12:57 am |
  13. D

    Huckabee should join Romney. That would be the best team in the field!

    January 31, 2008 01:13 am at 1:13 am |
  14. Melissa

    Ron Paul made Romney and McCain look like childish fools. Who wants to watch the two of them argue all night? I want to hear them ALL debate the real issues we are facing, not just the two hot-heads.

    January 31, 2008 01:14 am at 1:14 am |
  15. Richard

    Shame on CNN – Shame I say! I came back to CNN (from FOX) because of Lou Dobbs now I am leaving because of Anderson Cooper. That was not a fair debate. I will note vote for the candidates the MSM is pushing! MSM is trumped by the Internet. The American people are alive and know the real issues, get real answers, and have real debate via the Internet. Super Tuesday is coming and our voices will be heard!

    January 31, 2008 09:30 am at 9:30 am |
  16. Serving in Iraq

    Blah, Blah, Blah! I agree entirely with Brian and Bob. The problem with the media is..they don't have jack else to report! These candidates go up and down on switch sides more than a drunk driver swaying while driving down the road. None of the current presidential candidates have said anything to me that would influence me to vote for them. None of the candidates show enough drive to stand behind what they talk; all they do is talk a game that they don't even know how they going to approach if elected into office. What Brian said about the war profits is sooooo true, big corporations are making a killer out here and yet we (the Soldier) cannot get repair parts to fix equipment due to Army wide shortages. Who is supporting who?

    January 31, 2008 09:36 am at 9:36 am |
  17. Al

    If you are a true conservative the only candidate that made any sense is Huckabee. I almost turned off CNN because I was so furious they were not giving equal time to Paul and Huckabee! Romney blew his chance. He should have allowed Cooper to read the quote when Cooper offered and then turned to McCain and said something like, "What part of straight talk do you not understand? Please quit wasting everyone's time with your distortions of what I said." Then when McCain came back with a retort he could have followed up with an old Reagan statement like, "There you go again, John. Distorting the truth. Read the quote to him again, Cooper!"

    The problem here is that CNN and MSNBC and the mainstream (liberal biased press) would like to declare the winner of Super Tuesday before Super Tuesday.

    Now for straight talk on my side. My comments should be taken knowing that I voted for Huckabee in Florida.

    January 31, 2008 09:39 am at 9:39 am |
  18. Tom

    What's scariest to me is the prospect of having McCain walk through this process virtually untouched with regards to HIS flip-flopping on the issues. Mitt Romney has caught flack for catering his politics when it's convenient, but what should be apparent is the fact that McCain has lost the respect of many in his party with his teetering on the edge of so many issues. Bipartisan politics is one thing...playing the middle and muddling your thoughts is another. Romney should be receving more credit for his conservative views than he is. Unless the Republicans want a dicey general election in November, either elect someone other than McCain or force McCain to come back to his conservative base.

    January 31, 2008 09:42 am at 9:42 am |
  19. Bob

    McCain is another Bush. McCain is not conservative but a career politician who has lost sight of his role as an elected politician.
    McCain refuses to secure the borders, he will grant amnesty to millions of people who violated US law, he jeopardizes US sovereignty and existence, and he is part of the problem, not the solution.
    Voting for McCain would be like voting for Clinton only in a suit as opposed to a dress. The only difference between McCain and Clinton is, McCain will blatantly tell you he will vote or be in favor of anti-US policy!
    Look at the man’s political record, and it says it all. Look at his political speeches and he will tell you himself – he doesn’t care what the overwhelming populace wants, he does what he wants!
    He is an admirable man for serving this country militarily, and brave at heart for lasting as a POW, but as a political leader in the current times he is not what the US needs now.

    January 31, 2008 09:51 am at 9:51 am |
  20. Pete

    This was the first republican debate I've watched, and I was pretty disappointed that Ron Paul kept getting shafted on airtime. I didn't really know anything about the guy except that he seems to have an intensely loyal following; honestly I thought he was just some nut job who got people riled up. He changed my mind tonight. Watching the debate, he only got about 5 minutes (or less) of time to talk, but made more sense in that short time than any of the other candidates. At one point Anderson went down the line asking all the candidates the same question. He cut off Ron Paul halfway through his first sentence! then proceeded to let the other candidates explain their positions. Then all the debate "analysis" completely ignores him. Horribly biased coverage.

    I know a vote for Paul is probably a waste since he doesn't poll higher than 10% anywhere, but I think I'll do it anyway just so I can live with my vote.

    January 31, 2008 10:00 am at 10:00 am |
  21. steve j

    I am concerned about the health of McCain, I realize he's 70 something, but in jan. 30's debate he looked very washed out, I'm sure the rigors of campaining have taken their toll, he really didn't look or sound healthy. To be honest it has me rethinking abot my choice...AGAIN

    January 31, 2008 10:13 am at 10:13 am |
  22. Martin Buck

    Thank you CNN for reaffirming my choice to not have cable. Not only was this debate unfair to Mike Huckabee and Ron Paul it was obvious to me and probably to others that it was set up to deliberately exclude them. Professionalism is something that I hold in the highest regard and your debate showed a lack of it from the top down.

    I am a Huckabee supporter but I would have felt the same way about the debate if I was supporting McCain or Romney because I listen to everyone and exclude no one. No one is above or below anyone and should certainly not be treated as such.

    Mike Huckabee is the only candidate on that stage who talked to the American people, not at them. That is who I want as President, someone who understands me.

    January 31, 2008 10:16 am at 10:16 am |
  23. CD

    Ron Paul is the man. When it comes to stating your beliefs and putting America first, the other fail miserably.

    January 31, 2008 10:17 am at 10:17 am |
  24. Pete

    When will the media put to bed this idea that John McCain is some great bi-partisian conciliator? McCain has never taken a stand on anything that wasn't popular in public opinion polls, and that includes the troop surge idea which was popular long before it took place! We can hate various Republicans and Democrats all we want, but a lot of times the reason we hate those individuals is because they take a stand on something we do not agree with. The Clintons took all sorts of flak for governing by polls and focus groups. Why do we not hear this about John McCain. Can anyone name a SUCCESSFUL bi-partisian bill that he was instrumental in creating? McCain-Feingold? Horrible bill, that has made politics even dirtier than before. McCain-Kennedy? Horrible bill that even he will not stand behind any longer. "It will not come up for a vote" is NOT an answer to the question of if he still would support the bill he put together. Here is some striaght talk my friends, John McCain will say anything to increase his popularity and become president. This is NOT the man we want in the Oval Office!

    January 31, 2008 10:56 am at 10:56 am |
  25. Bruce, Harpers Ferry, WV

    Also, when are people going to get a clue. The media picks the President, not the American people. People listen to 30 second sound bites that the media wants you to listen to and steers you the way to vote. Here's how it's going to go down folks, trust me on this one. It will be between McCain and Obama and Obama kills him in the general election because he is the golden child of the media. I don't want him to be President but I guarentee you this is how it will go down. You heard it here first.

    January 31, 2008 11:05 am at 11:05 am |
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