master debaters

What You Missed in the Ninth GOP Debate

ROCHESTER, MI - NOVEMBER 09: Republican presidential candidates (L to R) former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney, businessman Herman Cain, and Texas Governor Rick Perry participate in a debate hosted by CNBC and the Michigan Republican Party at Oakland University on November 9, 2011 in Rochester, Michigan. The debate is the first meeting of the eight GOP presidential hopefuls since allegations of sexual impropriety have surfaced against front-runner Herman Cain. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
Herman Cain, probably talking about 9-9-9. Photo: Scott Olson/Getty Images

Last night, Rick Perry made one of the worst gaffes — if not the worst gaffe — in debate history. It’s all anyone will talk about for days, weeks, and possibly even years to come. Most people will never even realize that Perry’s on-stage stroke took up only a minute of the two hour debate.  But it’s true — other things did happen during the debate last night. Here are just a few: The audience booed a question about Herman Cain’s sex scandal, Mitt Romney forgot how many years he’s been married, and Newt Gingrich was a pompous ass. Read on for all the highlights.

Number of Times the 9-9-9 Plan Was Mentioned: Eight

Number of Times “Obamacare” Was Mentioned: Eleven

Number of Times “Dodd-Frank” Was Mentioned: Nine

Number of Times Ronald Reagan Was Mentioned: Two

Most Gratuitous Reference to Saul Alinksy: “We have had two cycles in my lifetime, Ronald Reagan, and the Contract with America, both of which had the same policy: lower taxes, less regulation, more American energy, and have faith in the American job creator, as distinct from the Saul Alinsky radicalism of higher taxes, bigger bureaucracy with more regulations, no American energy, as the president announced again today in his decision on offshore, and finally class warfare.” – Newt Gingrich.

Loudest Moderator: Jim Cramer

Most Over-the-Top Demonization of Democrats: “Our Democratic friends think when a corporation is profitable, that’s a bad thing.” — Mitt Romney

Amount of Time Herman Cain Spent Deciding Whether to Wear a Yellow Tie: 0.4 seconds

Nicest Thing Anyone Said About President Obama: Nothing

Top Two Exchanges Between Condescending Media-Basher Newt Gingrich and Member of the Media, Maria Bartiromo:

Weirdest Nickname: “General Axelrod.” – Michele Bachmann, referring to David Axelrod

Most Ill-Conceived Nickname: “Princess Nancy.” — Herman Cain, referring to House minority leader Nancy Pelosi

Least Accurate Description of Oneself: “I’m a man of steadiness and constancy. “ — Mitt Romney

Worst 53 Seconds of Rick Perry’s Life:

Cruelest Moderator Moment: Maria Bartiromo, minutes later, asking Perry to “name the top programs that you would cut in terms of long-term deficit reduction.”

The Second-Most-Unforgivable Memory Lapse:

Most Unpopular Tax Plan Among 6-Year-Olds: “I have everyone paying something because everyone benefits by this magnificent country. So even if it means paying the price of two Happy Meals a year, like $10, everyone can afford to pay at least that.” — Michele Bachmann.

Most Infuriatingly Huntsman-y Jon Huntsman Exchange:

Most Ron Paul-ish Ron Paul Remark: “Every time you spend, spending is a tax.”

Most Disapproving Audience Reaction: When Herman Cain was asked about his “character” issues:

Least Promising Jobs Plan: “We need to go out there and stick a big old flag in the middle of America that says, ‘Open for business again.’” — Rick Perry

Winners: Everyone who isn’t Rick Perry

Loser: Rick Perry