The Daily 202 PM Special: What Post reporters will be watching during tonight …

29 Oct 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

LIVE TWITTER CHAT: 3rd Republican Debate.

BOULDER, Colo. (AP) — The Republican presidential candidates are debating for the third time in the 2016 nomination contest, this time in battleground Colorado, as they compete to narrow down the wide-open contest. The House of Representatives Wednesday approved a two-year budget agreement that also raises the federal borrowing limit before the Treasury’s Nov. 3 deadline. He and Carson wrote a joint letter to CNBC threatening to boycott the debate unless the network limited it to two hours and allowed candidates to make opening and closing statements. The agreement raises spending caps modestly over the next two years, with a grab bag of higher revenues and spending changes to cover its costs over the next decade. We’ve got dozens of journalists, including five on the ground in Boulder, Colo., preparing blow-by-blow coverage from fact checks to in-depth analysis.

Nothing, and yet too often the national political conversation burbles along with no real discussion of the policies that matter most for your bottom line: taxes, debt, pensions, trade, healthcare and capital-G Growth. The 14 remaining Republican candidates are going to tear into those questions tonight with their teeth, in what should be at the very least an impressive competition to see who can make the most wildly impossible promises about lowering taxes while protecting the entitlements programs voters hold most dear. On the off chance that those $$ topics leave you cold, consider this: tonight may present one of the rare moments when Donald Trump will not be the loudest person in the room. Hosting the debate this evening will be no fewer than six television personalities from the cable financial news channel CNBC, whose programs go by names like Squawk on the Street and Squawk Alley and Squawk Box.

The quartet, all just barely registering on national polls, will be trying to have a breakout moment that could jumpstart their campaign and launch them onto the next main debate stage — as business woman Carly Fiorina did in the first debate. As with the three prior Republican debates, tonight’s main event, which starts at 8pm ET, will be preceded by a junior varsity debate comprising the four candidates who are polling least well. This afternoon I asked my colleagues on the Post’s politics team, all living and breathing this campaign, what they’re watching tonight: Dan Balz: “Looks like a night of bumper cars.

Business editor Dominic Rushe and business reporter Jana Kasperkevic, with the truth about the multiple failed business executives on stage (and Vines!) Opinion editor Megan Carpentier in Washington with contributions all night from columnists Jeb Lund, Jessica Valenti and Cindy Casares … and Adam Gabbatt on the theatre of it all. There’s continued to be teeth gnashing over this format — Jindal, who has seen improving poll numbers in Iowa, threatened to not even attend tonight.

Would be surprised if there are not interruptions.” Karen Tumulty: “Will any of the other Republican candidates attack the new Iowa front-runner, Dr. Still, as the clock ticks down to Iowa, all will be facing difficult decisions in recent weeks and months, with their fundraising dwindling, to make a case to carry on. His favorable ratings are stratospheric, so they do it at their peril.” Matea Gold: “The must-see-TV factor tonight: the inevitable Trump-Carson engagement. I’m really curious to see which Jeb shows up: the scolding figure on display in South Carolina Saturday, or the upbeat, happy warrior who charmed donors in Houston on Sunday and Monday?

Santorum takes a slight jab at Jindal (who also used to be a member of the House) saying you can’t just attack Washington, you have to be there to try to make things work. He has to find a way to make himself heard from in this debate after two forgettable performances and reports that his campaign was forced into cutbacks amid a fundraising shortage. This is a guy who has always been uncomfortable getting down in the mud to win campaigns, but it looks like he might have to tonight.” David Weigel: “I’m looking for Rand Paul to out-denounce everyone in his approach to Washington; he’s been insisting that no one else credibly can destroy the IRS or pass a Balanced Budget Amendment.

Phillip has been exploring why Carly Fiorina has faded so much since her breakout performance last month: “Her last debate polling bump is long gone, so she has a lot to prove. She wonders how he will respond if he’s no longer the center of attention: “In the past week, Trump has at times seemed to struggle with how to tactfully go after Carson, so it will be interesting to see if he takes the lead on that tonight or lets his opponents have at it.” Philip Rucker is most interested in the Carson factor: “How does he handle policy-specific questions from the debate moderators? Cruz now says that Trump has reframed the central question of the primary as: Who will stand up to Washington? “I’m wondering if he’s going to draw a distinction between himself and Carson, now the front-runner, and Bush and Rubio, and if he’ll put any daylight between himself and Trump.” Sean Sullivan: “Jeb Bush’s top aides wouldn’t have branded Marco Rubio a ‘GOP Obama’ in a presentation to major donors on Monday if they weren’t prepared for it to come up during tonight’s debate. It will say a lot about the tone of the campaign moving forward.” Ed O’Keefe: “Does Jeb’s physical distance from Trump make him more willing to attack the frontrunner?

And how will he confront Rubio standing right next to him?” Jose DelReal: “Kasich’s outburst yesterday was super interesting because it speaks to how frustrated establishment candidates are feeling about being ‘demonized,’ in Bush’s words, for being reasonable. The problem is that when they DO bring up how impractical some of these proposals are (Kasich on health care; Christie on Social Security; Bush on immigration), they turn off huge swaths of GOP voters AND also implicitly criticize those voters as impractical.” Anne Gearan: “The next president will inherit the morass in Iraq and Syria. This puts him at odds with and to the right of Rubio on an issue important to fiscal conservatives, many of whom decry the special breaks as “crony capitalism” at its worse. Tom Hamburger notes that Bush’s position comes as he retools his operation to focus on early-voting states, including Iowa, where the corn industry is preparing to begin an ad campaign attacking the subsidy.

In light of his scoop, Hamburger wonders: “Will the candidates address the issue of agriculture subsidies, a tough but revealing question given the upcoming Iowa caucuses?” Republicans nominated Paul Ryan to be the next Speaker. Bernie Sanders will come out for removing marijuana from a list of the most dangerous drugs outlawed by the federal government, “a move that would free states to legalize it without impediments from Washington,” John Wagner scoops. Martin O’Malley met with families of victims from the Newtown, Columbine and Aurora theater shootings this afternoon at the University of Colorado Boulder, the site of tonight’s GOP debate. Former National Security Council spokesman Tommy Vietor, a veteran of the Obama 2008 campaign, made fun of all the ridiculous pre-debate punditry, prompting Bush communications director Tim Miller to play along: The Nightly Show’s Larry Wilmore told Paul that one of tonight’s moderators might be high (the debate is in Colorado, after all).

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