Great Moments In Bullshit And General Awfulness From The Seventh GOP Debate

Last night, Fox News aired the seventh Republican debate–the last before Iowa, but unfortunately not the last for good! Ugh. As I’ve been doing for the past 80,000 Republican debates, I am here to present you with a list of the biggest instances of bullshit from last night’s debates!

1. Trump is just like Reagan for skipping the debate

Not technically a thing that happened IN the debate, but a thing that was rather part of the rhetoric beforehand. Lots and lots of “OH MY GOD HE’S JUST LIKE REAGAN, LOOK!” memes being passed around, about how Reagan skipped the pre-Iowa primary debate, and went on to win.

Which is technically true, but as with anything–context is key. Primary debates then were not what they are now. In fact, that was the first Republican primary debate since 1948. Five of the other contenders also skipped it. Reagan was advised to skip the debate on account of the fact that he was so far ahead, but then lost Iowa, and afterwards participated in the debates.

2. Rick Santorum touts his ability to get along with people and not be mean.

“I was able to then work with those same people that we fought with and able to pass welfare reform. Unborn Victims of Violence Act. Pro-life bills. Health savings accounts.

A whole laundry list of things not because I was mean, but because I was able to be respectful in the disagreements. And that’s what we need in Washington, someone who can be respectful and still unite this country.”

Oh Rick, you didn’t get your name turned into a euphemism for not being mean. 

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It’s pretty unlikely that a guy who thinks being gay is the same thing as participating in bestiality is going to unite a country in which 60% of the people support same sex marriage.

3. Carly Fiorina sticks to her guns on Planned Parenthood selling fetal organs and insists that it’s a good idea to require teens to get parental permission for abortion.

Here are the facts. Planned Parenthood engages in partial birth abortion, in late-term abortion. They alter those abortion techniques to harvest and sell body parts.

NOPE! No they don’t, Carly. It’s been proven over and over and over again. And now the people who made those videos have been indicted! She said:

Most Americans find horrific Hillary Clinton’s position or the Democrat party’s position, that a young woman does not need her mother’s permission to get an abortion.

But if you are 13 years old, you can get an abortion, but you can’t go to a tanning salon without your mother’s permission.

Sadly, there are a lot of states that require a parent’s permission to have an abortion. That is not a good thing. It means that, hypothetically, a father who is raping his daughter could force her to have his child. It means that a teenager who is in an abusive situation would have to risk their personal safety in order to get permission for an abortion. These are not good things. Regardless of how old you are, no one should be able to force you to carry a child.

4. Ted Cruz says millions of Americans have lost their jobs due to the Affordable Care Act.

“We have seen now in six years of Obamacare that it has been a disaster. It is the biggest job-killer in this country. Millions of Americans have lost their jobs, have been forced into part-time work, have lost their health insurance, have lost their doctors, have seen their premiums skyrocket. “

That is not factually true, at all. Several studies have shown that this did not happen, and that there was no decrease in the amount of people working full time.

Also, since the AFA has been implemented, the jobless rate has fallen from 9.9 percent to 5 percent, 13 million jobs have been added, and last year, the rate of uninsured people dropped to an historic low of 9 percent. Sorry dude. 

5. Marco Rubio says “We don’t want to be Sweden. We want to be the United States of America.”

Uh, sorry dude. Being Sweden would not be a bad thing at all. Sweden has one of the highest standards of living in the world, low unemployment, longer life spans, social mobility due to free college, universal health care, maternity leave, and, due to their embrace of the Nordic Model, was largely unaffected by the recent economic downturn suffered by the rest of the country. Life is pretty freaking sweet in Sweden.

6. Ted Cruz: “We can end welfare for those here illegally.”

Technically you can’t! Because undocumented immigrants are not eligible for welfare or SNAP!

However, in 2010, they did pay an estimated $10.6 billion into our tax system! They also pay an estimated $15 billion a year into Social Security–which they will not be getting back because they are unable to collect. Undocumented immigrants are paying into our system without getting anything out of it. Whoops! [CNN]

7. Candidates praise our “nation of immigrants,” while wanting to keep immigrants out. Rubio says, of our immigration system, “it has to be more of a merit-based system.” 

WELL! So much for “give me your tired, your poor,” eh? Maybe these dudes didn’t pay much attention in history class, but nearly all of the immigrants that helped build this country came over because they were poor as hell. The Irish and the Germans came over because of the potato famine, Italians came over because unification resulted in Southern Italy becoming incredibly poor, and it’s been pretty much the same, always. Immigrants built the railroads, they toiled in the factories during the industrial revolution. It’s been people who want a better life and have been willing to work their asses off for it–often, yes, working low wage jobs in order to send money back home to their families as many immigrants do now. That’s some family values for you, Republicans. Fuck your “merit-based” system.


6. Chris Christie says construction workers have lost money and jobs. 

“For the 45-year-old construction worker out there, who is having a hard time making things meet, he’s lost $4,000 in the last seven years in his income because of this administration.”

HARD NO. As far as construction workers go, the AP reports that “their average weekly earnings have risen 2.7 percent annually since 2009 — much faster than the national average for non-management employees. Their weekly earnings jumped to $1,021 in December, compared with a weekly income of $858 seven years ago.”

7. Ted Cruz promotes a flat tax as a good thing for everyone.

“It’s a simple flat tax for everyone. It’ll produce enormous economic growth.”

Uh, no. Flat taxes put the tax burden on the shoulders of the middle class–raising the amount they pay while heavily, heavily reducing the amount that rich people pay. While Cruz’s plan, unlike some others, does put less of a burden on the middle class, it decreases the overall revenue that we need to keep this country going.

8. Kasich says we can create a situation where wages rise.

“We can in fact create jobs and provide job security. We can create a situation where wages begin to rise.”

We all know what he’s talking about here, right? The idea that by lowering taxes on the rich, by lowering taxes on businesses, that all that spare money will be used to create more jobs and increase wages?

That, friends, is some serious bullshit.

Think about this for a second. In what world do you think rich people and business owners are going to say “Oh wow! Look at all this spare money I have! Now I can create jobs and raise wages for my employees!” That is sure as hell not going to happen. As of right now, the average CEO makes 300 times what the average employee makes–which is crazy when you consider that in the ’70s it was about 30 times more. Exactly how much more money do these people need before it “trickles down?”

The Walmart heirs, the Waltons, collectively have $102.7 billion in wealth, which is more than the entire bottom 40% of this country. Is that enough? Can we ask them to create jobs and raise wages now? Or do they need more money before that’s a thing that can happen? Are there some kind of figures these people could show us? Perhaps a diagram showing the amount of money we need to give rich people before they feel comfortable creating more jobs and raising wages?

Generally speaking, when you give rich people money, they keep it to themselves. This is why income inequality has been on the rise since Reagan hit the scene with his supply side economics crap. If we had the same distribution of wealth as we did in the 1970s, those of us in the bottom 80 percent would be making an average of $11,000 more per year. Tell me again how lowering taxes for the rich raises wages and creates jobs?

9. Whatever the hell it was Ben Carson was saying in closing arguments.

I want to thank the people of Iowa for being so welcoming to me. Please think of our founding fathers as you listen. We the people of the United States in order to form a more perfect union, establish justice, ensure domestic tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general welfare and secure the benefits of liberty to ourselves and our prosperity, do ordain and establish this constitution of the United States of America. Folks, it’s not too late. Enough said.

I…I don’t even know.

[Preliminary Debate Transcript]
[Main Debate Transcript]