Wednesday night’s GOP primary debate in Milwaukee for the Republican candidates for the presidency will be more a Q&A session than a classic debate, but that’s OK. Viewers will have a chance to take the measure of the men—and woman—who wish to become president.
Each candidate brings something to the table, so imagine if we could create an AI candidate encompassing the gifts of each one. Probably for another day.
Debate hosts Martha MacCallum and Bret Baier don’t need my help, but here are some questions I would ask.
1. Everyone—Democrats and Republicans—talk about what the government should and should not do. What should be the responsibilities of citizens before turning to government?
Recall John F. Kennedy’s line: “Ask not what your country can do for you. Ask what you can do for your country.”
2. With a $32 trillion national debt—and counting—how would you reduce it and even balance the budget as Bill Clinton did during his presidency, and how would you respond to the inevitable attacks by Democrats who want to cut nothing?
Follow-up: What agencies or programs come to mind that could be eliminated because they are outdated or don’t work?
3. Social issues—from abortion to LGBTQ+ to “transgender” women competing in women’s sports. Are these things the federal government should address, or should it be left to local and state governments?
4. You all have said you are pro-life. There have been 62 million legal abortions in this country since Roe v. Wade. Women of color have the most abortions. Public opinion generally opposes abortion after 15 weeks. How would you influence opinion toward your position, especially with the availability of an abortion pill that can be taken at home?
5. As president, would you finish the border wall and what would you do with the tens of thousands who have violated U.S. immigration laws? Deport them?
6. Especially since the pandemic, school choice has gained increasing support. Would you advocate for national school choice?
7. Former President Donald Trump is facing 91 felony charges over several jurisdictions. Raise a hand if you would NOT pardon him in the cases where a pardon is constitutionally permitted.
8. Some of you have charged the Biden administration with weaponizing the Justice Department. How would you restore public confidence in the DOJ and other institutions that have lost public confidence?
9. If it can be proved that Hunter Biden channeled money to his father and other family members, possibly as a quid pro quo to gain policy favors, should the president be impeached?
Follow-up: Are we in danger of having a tit-for-tat with each change of administration—Republicans go after Democrats, and the reverse? And is this good for the country?
10 . Even Democrats and certain media people who have supported the president are questioning whether he is mentally and physically fit to serve a second term. Should he be tested for cognition? Should Trump be tested? Should there be an age limit for people in high public office?
11. The primary system is structured so only the far Left and far Right candidates seem to get nominated. Would you change it so more moderate candidates have a chance, and if so, how?
12. Many Republicans have been asked about their faith in God and how or if it influences their policies. Do any of you wish to answer that question?
Bret and Martha, feel free to choose any of the questions from my list to add to yours. I’ll be watching.
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