6 takeaways from the second GOP debate

The second Republican primary debate took place at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library, however, front-runner Donald Trump did not participate, and the candidates clashed on a range of issues.

Main takeaways: Seven candidates took part in the debate, with North Dakota Gov. Doug Burgum and former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie making notable contributions.
* Burgum, struggling in current polls, sought more airtime and was cut off by a moderator for speaking out of turn.
* The debate ended with candidates refusing to “vote off” a rival, a question posed by a moderator.

Dynamic interactions: Sparks flew between multiple candidates, particularly former South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley and entrepreneur Vivek Ramaswamy.
* After a disagreement on social media regulation for teenagers, Haley told Ramaswamy: “Every time I hear you, I feel a little bit dumber.”

Trump’s absence: Though absent, Donald Trump featured in the debates, as his Republican rivals criticized him and his decision not to participate.
* Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis criticized Trump’s absence, saying, “Donald Trump is missing in action. He should be on this stage tonight.”

Foreign policy focus: China figured prominently during the debate, with several references to China’s role in global affairs.
* Gov. Haley called for ending normal trade relations with China until the fentanyl supply is cut off, while Christie discussed the possible alliances between China and Russia.

Humorous exchange: During a discussion about teachers unions, a quip about politicians “sleeping with teachers” led to laughter and further comments.
* The line, initially used by Christie, referred to President Biden’s relationship with his wife, Jill Biden, who is an educator and led to further jokes by other candidates.

View original article on NPR

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