Live Blog: CNN Republican National Security Debate
November 22nd, 2011
07:30 PM ET
3 years ago

Live Blog: CNN Republican National Security Debate

Washington, D.C. (CNN) - The CNN Political Ticker is live blogging the CNN Republican National Security Debate in Washington, D.C. Check here for live updates throughout the event and be sure to follow @PoliticalTicker, @CNNPolitics and use #CNNDebate.

10:05p.m. ETpiersmorgan: Good night for Gingrich & Huntsman. Romney flat, Perry better, Paul lively, Cain & Bachmann irrelevant, taxi for Santorum. #cnndebate

10:05 p.m. ET@AWMooneyCNN: Can't get enough of ambiguous letter grades after these debates #cnndebate

10:00 p.m. ET - @rolandsmartin: Media will say @newtgingrich won this debate. NOT TRUE. 1st half: Huntsman. Overall: Ron Paul #cnndebate

9:59p.m. ET Wolf Blitzer closed the debate and says good night.

9:57 p.m. ET – Cain said one of the greatest threats to U.S. is cyber attack. Gingrich agreed with that. Bachmann said threat of terrorism has come home, she raised prosecution in her home state of those convicted of supporting Al Qaeda inspired group in Somalia.

9:55 p.m. ET – @PeterHambyCNN: the Republican Party is officially all over the place when it comes to foreign policy

9:54 p.m. – Paul said Taliban is only concerned with killing Americans in Afghanistan because the U.S. military is present in Afghanistan. Romney agreed with Santorum on importance of Latin America to the U.S. He said Hezbollah is active in Latin America and U.S. must keep an eye on that.

9:53 p.m. ET – Perry said if we are serious about protecting Israel we need to pay attention to Syria.

9:51 p.m. ET – Romney said Obama "apologizes" for America and does not embrace American military exceptionalism. He said he does not support no-fly zone in Syria. Romney said Syria is getting pressure from many different countries and actors. Now is not the time for a no-fly zone he said.

9:49 p.m. ET Paul said U.S. should practice policy of "good will" to other countries. Paul asked why U.S. should spend more money to nation build. 'Why don't we mind our own business?" he asks.

9:49 p.m. ET – Q about how to stop terrorist groups from taking hold in Somalia

9:47 p.m. ET – Huntsman said sanctions against Syria and Iran won't work because of Chinese and Russian opposition. Huntsman said mullahs in Iran have already decided they want to build a nuclear bomb.

9:47 p.m. ET – Q from Twitter about current situation in Egypt

9:45 p.m. ET – Perry said no-fly zone would give Syrian dissidents and military chance to defect. Perry said Syria is a partner with Iran in "exporting terrorism," and if we are serious about Iran, then must be serious about Syria.

9:45 p.m. ET – Cain said he would not support a U.S. led no-fly zone in Syria.

9:44 p.m. ET – Q from audience about Syria, and whether you support a no-fly zone like Perry proposed

9:43 p.m. ET@HowardKurtz: Gingrich is standing his ground on not deporting longtime illegal immigrants, despite Romney criticism. Newt knows not a popular GOP stance.

9:37p.m. ET – Perry said there is a need to stop magnets for illegal immigrants, but first order of business is to secure the border. Perry said he has been dealing with it for 10 years as Texas governor. Must put boots on the ground and aerial assets in the air to watch the border.

9:34 p.m. ET – Romney said "amnesty is a magnet." Said we need system that welcomes those who want to come to the U.S. legally. Said we need to stop in-state tuition for children of illegal immigrants and crack down on employers who hire illegal immigrants.

9:33 p.m. ET@CNNPolitics: Gingrich supports "Red Card" process where immigrants could become "legal" but could not get "a path to citizenship." #CNNDebate

9:30 p.m. ET – Gingrich said U.S. should have a visa attached to every math and science degree to assure foreign graduates stay. Said he believes you need to find a system like a World War II selective board that reviews those already here as a possible path to citizenship for illegal immigrants.

9:29 p.m. ET – Santorum said he would champion regulatory reform to help money trickle down to blue collar workers and make the U.S. a more welcoming place for legal immigrants.

9:28 pm. ET - @AWMooneyCNN: Cain is good at making lists #cnndebate

9:27 p.m.ET – Cain said we know terrorists have entered U.S. from Mexico. Said we must secure border "for real." Said U.S. needs to reform path to citizenship and empower states to do what federal government is not doing with illegal immigrants.

9:25 p.m. ET – Paul said U.S. war on drugs is "total failure" and contributes to problems at border. Paul said prescription drugs are bigger killer than illegal drugs.

9:24 p.m. ET – Perry said strong border security is important not just because of cartels, but because of Hamas and Iran involvement in Latin America.

9:23 p.m. ET – Q about possible U.S. military involvement fighting Mexican drug cartels

9:22 p.m. ET - @psteinhauserCNN: for those of you scoring at home.. the DNC just sent out it's second Romney "flip flop" email #CNNdebate

9:15 p.m. ET Newt Gingrich and Michele Bachmann look at ways to lower the deficit and handle entitlement reform in the U.S.

9:13 p.m. ET – Gingrich said model in Chile is a good example of a program that could work in the U.S. when it comes to entitlement reform.

9:12 p.m. ET – Q about entitlement reform.

9:11 p.m. ET – Santorum said there should be some compromise from both sides on Capitol Hill. Said Obama has "poisoned the well" in Congress and created atmosphere where compromise not possible.

9:11 p.m. ET@teapartynation: Best idea of the night. Make Congress part time. #cnndebate #teapartynation #tcot #gop

9:10 p.m ET@donnabrazile: Good news: Perry didn't forget anything on his mind, but most of it was misleading. President Obama did lay out a debt plan in September.

9:09 p.m. ET@CNNPolitics: Perry calls Super Committee a "Super Failure" #CNNDebate

9:09 p.m. ET – Perry said Defense Secretary Panetta should resign over potential defense cuts after Super Committee failure to reach agreement.

9:07 p.m. ET@BuddyRoemer: Everything ought to be on the table – oil subsidies, ethanol, entitlements, the military. We have to be strong, but military on the table

9:06p.m. ET – Huntsman said foreign policy must be driven by economics in era of a rising China.

9:04 p.m. ET Gingrich said he would bomb Iran's nuclear capability only as a last recourse and only to make sure current regime is finished.

9:02 p.m. ET – Romney said his first trip abroad as president would be to Israel.

9:01 p.m ET @EWErickson: Ron Paul actually gets a great comeback at Mitt Romney and actually shows he knows more about the budget than Romney on this point. Wow.

9:00 p.m. ET – Paul said budget cutting on Capitol is a "road to disaster". Said members of Congress are just "nibbling". Romney said Congress is cutting programs that are cutting America's ability to defend itself.

8:59 p.m. ET – Cain said there must first be clarity of goals before deploying aid to countries. Paul said U.S. aid must stop in order to deal with U.S. financial condition and deficits.

8:57 p.m. ET – Santorum said development assistance is important. Criticized candidates who support zeroing out aid.

8:56 p.m. ET – Candidates were asked if they would step up Iran sanctions or change tactics.

8:56 p.m. ET Q about development assistance under Bush administration

8:55 p.m. ET – Bachmann took question back to Israel and Iran's statement that it would eradicate Israel from face of the earth. Said Obama has failed the American people and has given Iran "the luxury of time" to build a weapon.

8:53 p.m. ET – Gingrich said solution is increasing U.S. production of energy to create a surplus which would negate need for Iranian oil on the world market. He said he does support sanctioning the Iranian central bank.

8:52 p.m. ET – Perry said U.S. should use every sanction possible against Iran, including sanctioning Iran's central bank. Says Obama shows lack of leadership for not doing so.

8:51 p.m. ET – Q from audience on sanctions about Iran that could stop Iran nuclear weapon.

8:51 p.m. ET – Cain said if we pull out of Afghanistan too soon, Iran will fill power vacuum there.

8:50 p.m. ET – @donnabrazile: Cain is so out of his league. Please let him take a break to study.

8:49 p.m. ET – Paul said he would not support such attack. Said U.S. needs to get out of Israel's way. Said it is their own business who they attack. He says Israel can take care of themselves since they have nuclear weapons.

8:48 p.m. ET – Cain said if Israel had credible plan he would support, and U.S. would join if clear victory plan existed.

8:47 p.m. ET – Q about possibility of Israel attacking Iran, would you support or assist?

8:45 p.m. ET @HowardKurtz: Newt had good applause line on being "furious" with Pakistan re Osama, but never quite said what he'd so about that country – or Afghanistan

8:43 p.m. ET@natlsecuritycnn: Huntsman: we haven't done a good job defing the end point in #Afghanistan

8:42 p.m. ET – Santorum said Obama is playing politics with decisions in Afghanistan.

8:42 p.m. ET - @PeterHambyCNN: Newt "happy to play by the rules" tonight. News!

8:40 p.m. ET – Gingrich said U.S. should be furious bin Laden was found in Pakistan. Says we should tell Pakistan "help us or get out of the way."

8:39 p.m. ET – Huntsman said commander in chief is the one who makes final decision and should take input from wide variety of voices.

8:37 p.m. ET – Romney pushed Huntsman on his position. Romney said commanders on the ground have said this is not time to cut and run, and Romney said he agrees with them.

8:36 p.m. ET – Huntsman disagreed with Romney. Said we have achieved important goals like death of Osama bin Laden. But says we should reduce footprint to Special Forces, and said U.S. is getting tired of long term presence there.

8:35 p.m. ET – Romney said there should be gradual transition to Afghan control. Said we should just not "pull up stakes" and get out of town.

8:34 p.m. ET – Q about amount of spending in Afghanistan

8:33 p.m. ET – Perry responded saying we should remain engaged in that part of the world, justshould not write "blank checks."

8:33 p.m. ET - @CNNPolitics: Cain got personal with @WolfBlitzerCNN: "No Blitz...I'm sorry Blitz, I meant Wolf." Wolf responds: "Thank you Cain." #CNNDebate

8:33 p.m. ET – Bachmann called Perry approach "highly naive" due to Pakistan status as a nuclear weapon state.

8:32 p.m. ET – Perry repeated pledge of not spending a "dime" to Pakistan in foreign aid. Said we should not write check to countries that dont represent U.S. interests.

8:30 p.m. ET - @natlsecuritycnn: Perry: Obama failed "when it comes to expending" intel dollars. Intel budget has increased each year http://bit.ly/v6SXTA #CNNDebate

8:30 p.m. ET – Bachmann said it is important to remain engaged in Pakistan to not lose influence to China. Said she would continue aid to Pakistan, but says Obama policy of "keeping your fingers crossed" is not working and calls the approach "too nuclear to fail.

8:30 p.m ET@donnabrazile: Huntsman: #CNNdebate. Pakistan is a concern that should keep us up at night. A nation-state that is a candidate for failure.

8:30 p.m. ET - @natlsecuritycnn: Perry: Obama failed "when it comes to expending" intel dollars. Intel budget has increased each year

8:29 p.m. ET@THEHermanCain: Team HC: The terrorists have one objective: to kill all of us! We must use every means possible to identify them first! #cnndebate

8:28 p.m. ET – Huntsman said Washington is in a state of dysfunction and must be ready to deal with this threat. Huntsman said it is time to bring troops out of Afghanistan.

8:27 p.m. ET – Q on extended drone campaigns in Pakistan and whether it would help defeat Al Qaeda

8:26 p.m. ET – Former Godfather's CEO Herman Cain said it may be appropriate to update the Patriot Act but we "should not throw baby out with the bathwater." On profiling, Cain said let's ask the professionals what will work.

8:24 p.m. ET – Paul disagreed with Santorum. Asks what if terrorist looked like Timothy McVeigh. Says it would be a "sacrifice" if Patriot Act goes on.

8:22 p.m. ET -
GOP candidates debate the merits of profiling in order to protect our country from terrorist attacks.

8:23 p.m. ET – Former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum said he does support profiling at airport. Santorum said radical Muslims are committing crimes.

8:21 p.m. ET – Texas Gov. Rick Perry said he would privatize the T.S.A. Said we must strengthen the Patriot Act. Says we have failed in ability to collect intelligence around the world.

8:20 p.m. ET – Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney said we can do better system than patdowns, but said we must go after those who attack America.

8:20 p.m. ET Q from CNN Politics TSA patdowns – violation of liberty?

8:19 p.m. ET – Former Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman said we must find balance between security and liberty. Says local, state and national governments must cooperate.

8:18 p.m. ET@HowardKurz: Wolf dodges bullet: Newt can't attack moderator because 1st question came from Reagan's attorney general, Ed Meese

8:17 p.m. ET – Minnesota Rep. Michele Bachmann said new technology has changed the way we investigate terrorism. Says President Obama has turned terrorism prosecution to ACLU. Said we should not give Miranada warnings to suspects.

8:16 p.m. ET – Gingrich disagreed with Paul. Says he wants a law that says if you attack U.S. we will come after you.

8:15 p.m. E.T. – Texas Rep. Ron Paul said Patriot Act is "unpatriotic". Said we have given up our liberty to provide for security.

8:14p.m. ET – Newt Gingrich said "all of us will be in danger" for the rest of our lives and says he would not change the Patriot Act. Says he would strengthen it as president.

8:13 p.m. ET – First Q from Ed Meese about the Patriot Act.

8:10 p.m. ET - Gingrich and Paul debate the merits of extending the Patriot Act

8:09 p.m. ET – Candidates introduced themselves to the audience.

8:07 p.m. ET – Cast member from the Broadway show 'Jersey Boys' sang the National Anthem.

8:04 p.m. ET – The candidates were introduced and took the stage.

7:50 p.m. ET – From CNN's Security Clearance blog, here is a look at some distinctive positions the candidates take on national security and foreign policy.

7:48 p.m. ET@wolfblitzercnn: Heading to the Constitution Hall stage to moderate Republican presidential #CNNDebate now. Watch!

7:47 p.m. ET – CNN Election Center: Much to gain and lose for Gingrich, rivals in CNN national security debate

7:37 p.m. ET @PeterHambyCNN inside the debate prep nerve center at Constitution Hall, and @wolfblitzercnn is feeling strong.

7:16 p.m. ET @LisaDCNN: CAIN ADVISOR: Tells me they've prepped for nat. security/foreign policy for last week and "he's ready for every question"

7:15 p.m. ET @Jon2012girls: The girls ready for the debate pic.twitter.com/FGT1riox

7:00 p.m. ET@MittRomney: Tune in at 8:00 P.M. EST for the #CNNDebate

soundoff (948 Responses)
  1. True patriot

    Ron Paul – not perfect, but makes alot of sense. Secured my vote tonight

    November 22, 2011 11:01 pm at 11:01 pm |
  2. jeff

    I missed debate. How can I watch recorded version? WHY is this so hard to find???

    November 22, 2011 11:01 pm at 11:01 pm |
  3. Daniel A P

    I would like to address all the evangelicals and people of faith that are here on this forum of my theory. Israel will have to stand on its own that is what is described in Bible prophecy. Everyone else has expressed their support for Israel and rightly so but with the word of God what will happen is America will not stand in defense of Israel at a point when it is invaded by multiple nations including Russia, Iran, Syria, Libya and others. Either America won't or can't. Either Obama will be reelected in that scenario because He would decide not to support Israel for personal reasons or Ron Paul would have one and decide not to for economic reasons and because we are in the dispensation of grace and not saved by works we are not obligated to protect them and it wouldn't be feasible in either scenario.

    November 22, 2011 11:03 pm at 11:03 pm |
  4. Daniel A P

    I therefore predict that Ron Paul has more than a 50% change of winning and believe that He will win despite what the controlled media reports.

    November 22, 2011 11:05 pm at 11:05 pm |
  5. Kyle

    To anyone claiming Ron Paul is unelectable, he is CURRENTLY polling about 43 to 48 in a hypothetical race to Obama, trailing by 5 points. As a comparison, Romney is polling about 45 to 46...trailing by a point. Pauls chances are more than good, and are sure to go nowhere but up....

    November 22, 2011 11:06 pm at 11:06 pm |
  6. gabbyur24

    Two questions for Newt: 1) Illegals living here "for a long time" have to have a Social Security number to work which is only legally available to persons here legally. Whose number are they using? 2) 7.5 million jobs OUTSIDE agriculture are held by illegals. That is 7.5 million citizens who Newt would not support for those jobs. You only have one choice – you either support Americans or illegals. Looks like Newt supports illegals. 400,000 CHILDREN'S SSNs are stolen every year. How would Newt like it if one of his grandchildren applied for their benefits to find an illegal had used their SSN for years? SS doesn't let you know when another person is using your number, neither do they fix the resulting mess. If you make a proven concerted effort to fix the problem and you cannot, they will allow you a new SSN but you lose all your work history. For me and my house, I support the law, and I support my fellow Americans.

    November 22, 2011 11:07 pm at 11:07 pm |
  7. SPQR

    Cain's crust is done.

    Bachman says more about herself than when she speaks of President Obama 2012.

    Newt is just too good of a magician.

    Perry can't find what he doesn't know existst.

    Mitt is too much of Bob Sugar from Jerry McGuire.

    Ron Paul has a good product but can't sell it.

    Santorum is too irrelevant.

    Huntsman makes me think of Ketchup.

    November 22, 2011 11:08 pm at 11:08 pm |
  8. Satish

    My vote goes to Gingrich. He's the only candidate who makes sense and believable

    November 22, 2011 11:09 pm at 11:09 pm |
  9. Amy

    the only person there that made any sense, I don't believe that I am saying this, was Newt. He is right on immigration. I a sick and tired to hear how to best destroyed families, how to ruin peoples live the best. This latest anti-immigrant republican talk reminds me of civil rights movement and how blacks were discriminated against. It seems that now they switched to immigrants. Shame on them. This is unamerican behavior!

    November 22, 2011 11:10 pm at 11:10 pm |
  10. Roll Tide

    Racial Profiling: So, it would be okay to profile (stop, search, question, or just continuous monitoring) of ALL young black males in an urban area who MAY be involved in crime? What about profiling all minorities/ poor white people who happen to be driving through the suburbs (which probably happens now to some degree anyway), and who could potentially be involved in criminal activity? I think it can very easily be argued that the majority of crime and subsequent victims have nothing, zero, zilch to do with terrorism. Maybe the government should start by securing our cities from drug dealers/ pimps, and other forms of organized crime not "potential" terrorists

    November 22, 2011 11:11 pm at 11:11 pm |
  11. Robin

    I like Ron Paul's statement, on how the US should not nation build for others and mind our own business. Let the Middle East run their own countries, we can not even pass a federal budget for ourselves. Congress should be paid based on how much business they do while in session. I'm sure we all have someone at work that we do not like, but in the end we have to work with them to get the job done. Congress should do the same. If they can not work together, then they should be reprimanded. Just like in the private sector. We as the taxpayers, deserve to have our Congress productive and engaging with each other to keep our government running responsibly.

    November 22, 2011 11:12 pm at 11:12 pm |
  12. Strange NWO

    Mitt Romney will choose Vice President.... He's distant brother –> Jon Huntsman.
    Jon Huntsman will choose Vice President Mitt Romney.

    Why?!?! famous history - > PARLEY P. PRATT, Mountain Meadows massacre, Baker–Fancher party. etc...

    They know what to do with Occupy Wall Street. It's called "Illuminati.". Just like Queen Elizabeth have distant cousin like king of france, king of spain, etc... maybe Koch brothers...

    November 22, 2011 11:12 pm at 11:12 pm |
  13. Amy

    @ gabbyur24. You are wrong. many immigrants came legally to this country and got SS number. Later they could not switch to other visa types and became illegal. This is why immigration laws should be changed because they don't work and are producing illegal immigrants. People want to stay legal, but the laws don't allow it.

    November 22, 2011 11:13 pm at 11:13 pm |
  14. J McGuinness

    Vote Ron Paul to the White House or we will be very sorry we didn't. Oh and Occupy Wall Street you want freedom and equality? Well Dr. Paul is your best chance for either so you'd best get on board....

    November 22, 2011 11:16 pm at 11:16 pm |
  15. gabbyur24

    There are 14 million Americans out of work. There are 7.5 million jobs OUTSIDE agriculture held by illegals. E-Verify would cut the unemployment rate in half. BUT it's being held up in committee in a Repub controlled House of Representatives by Repub leaders. STOP yapping about a JOBS BILL. If any of you really gave a damn about unemployed Americans, you would demand E-Verify.

    November 22, 2011 11:16 pm at 11:16 pm |
  16. SPQR

    The biggest threat to our National Security is the Federal Reserve and the centralized banking system that creates (prints) money out of debt.

    Why. Because the Federal Reserve is a Corporation that is owned by shareholders that benefit every time The United States of America borrows money from them.

    Who ownes our external debt ? Who makes money from our interest payments ? Who is getting richer ervery time The United States of America's debt grows ?

    Research two words. Money Masters.

    November 22, 2011 11:21 pm at 11:21 pm |
  17. Tyler

    As a student who hopes to be in a tech related place in the workforce, I will say that I am happy that Cain did mention the threat of cyber attacks against the United States. While I do not fully support him, I will say that he has a bit of my respect for mentioning that.

    November 22, 2011 11:26 pm at 11:26 pm |
  18. Anonymous

    Come on CNN.....this opposite of what was said ...."8:16 p.m. ET – Gingrich disagreed with Paul. Says he wants a law that says if you attack U.S. we will come after you" ........The wording on this makes it sound like this is what Gingrich would want, yet instead he was saying that he wants to strengthen Patriot Act to capture people planning attacks before they happen instead of after they happen.

    November 22, 2011 11:29 pm at 11:29 pm |
  19. SoldierOfFortunes

    All long-winded polticians can get off the soap box and absolve the problem...hire the unemployed veterans..the end...

    November 22, 2011 11:33 pm at 11:33 pm |
  20. SPQR

    Newt Gingrich is the kind of person that thinks one thing, says another thing and then will do something else.

    Wasn't Newt on President Clinton's neck for the Lewinski situation, while he was being unfaithful to his own wife at the very same time ?

    I wouldn't trust Newt Gingrich even if his tongue was notarized.

    November 22, 2011 11:36 pm at 11:36 pm |
  21. russ

    Newt Gingrich continues the fear tactic that if we do not have the Patriot act that some boggie man with a nuke is going to get us. The reality is there is no evidence that the Patriot act as prevented a nuke attack on America. Probably because they don't have access to this stuff. But keep the fear going Newt in brainwashing weak Americans that it is better to give up liberty for security. We know the Patriot act is mainly targeted at taking the rights of honest Americans away.

    November 22, 2011 11:38 pm at 11:38 pm |
  22. russ

    Newt Gingrich is just another globalist neocon piece of trash that will get us in more wars. The reason many of these terrorists want to hit the US is because the US likes to be the bully of the world and pee in everyone backyard. So of course these fanatics want to take a dump in our backyard. The US would have a lot fewer enemies in the world if it just minded its own business. Not too many people are trying to attack Panama. Why is that? Because it minds its own business.

    November 22, 2011 11:48 pm at 11:48 pm |
  23. arnold somereville

    Candidates: If a terroist group acquires and detonates a nuclear bomb in the USA, would you upon identification of the culprits, attack their country with a nuclear device?

    November 22, 2011 11:53 pm at 11:53 pm |
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