No, it’s not a debate. That would be coarse. It’s actually a series of speed dates conversations between Mike Huckabee and some of the surviving GOP candidates. And we’re holding a Cartoon Cavalcade/Open Thread because it’s only 5pm in Sandy Eggo, so what the hell.


“UC-San Diego offers the most childbirth options.”

Just in case you were wondering.

Candidates will be questioned by three Republican attorneys general. You may forget anything else that happens.

Florida AG Pam Bondi: Why, yes, I’m an airhead!

Pam sez she’s a 20-year prosecutor. I’m really having a problem buying that.

Also questioning: The Cooch. Who, unlike Pam, has yet to reveal himself a rank idiot. But we’re just getting started.

“Speaker Gingrich, do you agree with me totally, or just substantially?”

@nojo: The Cooch is demonstrably insane. And they’re to nuts to realize that the more video they supply, the more ammunition.

I may have missed it, but Newt lasted his entire 11 minutes without mentioning Reagan.

No, wait — he got one in. Still, that must be a personal best.

It’s times like this that I am especially grateful I don’t have a TV.

@blogenfreude: But to qualify, he has to be insane in the next 90 minutes. Pam revealed herself an idiot out of the gate.

Frothy Mix: “We weren’t dealing with terrorism prior to the events of 9/11.”

The first WTC bombing must have been an accident.

Is this being Webcast. I am on a computer with sound tonight.

BookPlugWatch: two candidates, three (or four) titles.

Everybody’s talking about states’ rights — using federal money.

I’ve seen mice with larger eyes than Frothy Mix.

Miami Herald, Oct. 11: “Attorney General Pam Bondi joined a multi-state lawsuit asking for a delay in the implementation of a new rule set by the Environmental Protection Agency over hazardous emissions from coal-fired power plants, a continuation in her legal fight against the agency’s clean-air regulations.”

Frothy Mix: “Limited government”.

Frothy Mix, five minutes ago: “Patriot Act”.

Newt wants to get rid of a Texas judge. Frothy Mix wants to get rid of the 9th Circuit. Point: Frothy Mix.

Deranger Rick must have mainlined Red Bull in the green room.

Cooch is closely questioning Deranger Rick about his authority to undermine Obamacare. Dance, Deranger Rick, dance!

Deranger Rick confuses Texas and Arkansas. I swear to God.

Screw debates — each candidate should undergo an hourlong Q&A session, just so we can see which ones fade after five minutes.

Deranger Rick: Get rid of school lunch, Pell Grants, etc. “I believe there is a better way to distribute those dollars.”

So: Keep the money, shift funnels.

Not only does Deranger Rick want a part-time Congress, he wants term limits for the Supreme Court. So, what other Amendments are required to implement his policies?

@nojo: And I vaguely remember something about the USS Cole, but my mind might be playing tricks.

Republicans agree: States’ rights can only be trumped by federal laws they agree with.

And, yes, credit to Cooch for pressing the distinction. He may be insane, but he’s not an idiot.

Cooch brings up interstate pollution: How do two states negotiate something like that without the Feds intervening?

Crazy Eyes: Case-by-case legislation.

Pam: Other than Roe v. Wade, what’s the worst Supreme Court decision of the past fifty years?

Pam would make a great beauty-pageant judge.

Two to go: Ron Paul, then Mitt “Lundegaard” Romney. Still figuring out a shorthand for that.

Cooch is actually asking very good questions. Cooch may be dangerous if he breaks out of Virginia — haven’t seen such intelligence on the Right in years.

Okie AG to Ron Paul: But doesn’t the Patriot Act help us chase down domestic terrorists like the Oklahoma City bombers?

Ron Paul: “The market is a real strict regulator.” Just look at the 1890s.

Ron Paul: “The free market and property rights can solve just about all of these problems.”

Just in case you got excited about him complaining again about the “war” on terrorism.

At this moment, millions of people are watching this debate using technologies they don’t believe in.

Ron Paul worries that abruptly cutting social programs would create “anarchy”. Although his platform is anarchy.

Pam: “If you could suggest every American read one book, what would it be?”

You can hear air escaping from her tires as she speaks.

Questions to Ron Paul were unusually challenging. (But not surprisingly…)

Up next, The Main Event: Mittens!

Good evening, Governor Romney. Have you taken a lot count lately?

Mittens: Opposing fracking is an anti-Free Enterprise plot. At least until he can set the faucets on fire in his $12 million beach house.

If fracking becomes a major issue, expect some awesome Battlestar mashups.

Mittens on Obamacare: “Why didn’t you give me a call?” Because Obama talked to Mitt’s advisers.

Mittens doesn’t crack during his eleven minutes.

Segment followed by openly gay clothing designer advertising travel-booking website.

Next segment: Each candidate gets sixty seconds to blather.

So far, nobody’s upstaging Herman Cain! for Sunday’s news.

Mittens worries that we’ll be “governed by the government.”

Deranger Rick: “I’ve lived a purpose-driven life.”

Newt: “This may be most important election since 1860.”

For my money, 1980 was the turning point.

Crazy Eyes: “As President of the United States, I’m going to unite our country.”

Against her.

Frothy Mix: “We are sick from the inside.”

I think we can all agree on that.

@nojo: Tim isn’t actually a designer, just a fashion guru.

I think the news tonight is that Ken Cuccinelli is very, very dangerous. Somebody distract him with a TV show before he gets any ideas.

Did someone mangle the Star Spangled Whatsit? I love it when they put their hands over their hearts and Mitt mouths the words.

@Benedick: Studio show, no audience, no patriotic formalities. Huckabee didn’t even ask any questions — just the wingnut AGs.

But it’s become like covering a president: You watch to see whether a candidate assassinates himself.

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