Ten Republican presidential candidates participated in Fox News’s primetime debate:
- businessman Donald Trump,
- former Florida Governor Jeb Bush,
- Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker,
- former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee,
- neurosurgeon Dr. Ben Carson,
- Texas Senator Ted Cruz,
- Florida Senator Marco Rubio,
- Kentucky Senator Rand Paul,
- New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, and
- Ohio Governor John Kasich.
Walker said that if the agreement on Iran’s nuclear program, negotiated by the Obama administration and pending congress review, is signed and he is elected president, he will cancel it immediately:
I still remember, as a kid, tying a yellow ribbon around a tree in front of my house during the 444 days that Iran held 52 Americans hostage. Iran is not a place we should be doing business with.
To me, you terminate the deal on day one, you reinstate the sanctions authorized by Congress, you go to Congress and put in place even more crippling sanctions in place, and then you convince our allies to do the same.
This is not just bad with Iran, this is bad with ISIS. It is tied together, and, once and for all, we need a leader who’s gonna stand up and do something about it.
Paul criticized the agreement as well, mentioning former President Ronald Reagan as an example for a better approach:
I’m a Reagan conservative. Reagan did negotiate with the Soviets. But you have to negotiate from a position of strength, and I think President Obama gave away too much, too early.
If there’s going to be a negotiation, you’re going to have to believe somehow that the Iranians are going to comply. I asked this question to John Kerry, I said “do you believe they’re trustworthy?” and he said “No.”
And I said, “well, how are we gonna get them to comply?” I would have never released the sanctions before there was consistent evidence of compliance.
Huckabee mentioned Reagan as well:
Ronald Reagan said “trust, but verify.” President Obama is “trust, but vilify.” He trusts our enemies and vilifies everyone who disagrees with him. And the reason we disagree with him has nothing to do with party. It has to do with the incredibly dangerous place that this world is gonna be as a result of a deal in which we got nothing.
We didn’t even get four hostages out. We got nothing, and Iran gets everything they want. We said we would have anywhere, anytime negotiations and inspections, we gave that up. We said that we would make sure that they didn’t have any nuclear capacity, we gave that up.
The president can’t tell you what we got. I’ll tell you what the world got. The world has a burgeoning nuclear power that didn’t, as the Soviets, say “we might defend ourselves in a war.” What the Iranians have said is, “we will wipe Israel off the face of the map, and we will bring death to America.”
When someone points a gun at your head and loads it, by God, you ought to take them seriously, and we need to take that seriously.