Last night the top eleven Republican candidates running for President based on their polling averages, gathered at the Ronald W. Reagan Presidential Library & Museum in Simi Valley, California, for the second GOP Presidential debate, hosted by CNN.
The three hour debate allowed time for several questions, rebuttals and closing statements, but it was clear that most were there to debate with Donald Trump, the current front runner in the race to represent the Republican Party for President. And Trump seemed happy to oblige.
During one particular exchange, the reality TV star Donald Trump criticized the Bush family legacy for getting the United States into a war with Iraq which he was against. Trump said not only was it a disaster internationally, it was a disaster for the Republican Party domestically because it “gave us Barack Obama.”
“Your brother and your brother’s administration gave us Barack Obama because it was such a disaster those last three months that Abraham Lincoln couldn’t have been elected,” Trump said.
Jeb Bush then defended his brother by invoking the terrorist attacks on Sept. 11, 2001, when more than 3000 people were killed that day, as his brother, the President, was keeping us all “safe”.
“As it relates to my brother, there’s one thing I know for sure: He kept us safe,” Bush said. “I don’t know if you remember, Donald, you remember the rubble? You remember the firefighter with his arms around him? He sent a clear signal that the United States would be strong and fight Islamic terrorism, and he did keep us safe.”
After Bush said his brother “kept us safe”, Trump said, “I don’t feel safe”, then Trump looked at the others on the stage and asked Rand Paul if he felt “safe”.
“I don’t know. You feel safe right now? I don’t feel so safe”, Trump said.
Then Rand Paul asked the moderator if he could respond to Trumps question, but before the moderator could say a word, Scott Walker jumped in and said it’s “Obama”, you don’t feel “safe” because of “Obama.”
“That’s because of Barack Obama. We’ve had a president who called ISIS the J.V. squad, Yemen a success story, Iran a place we can do business with. It’s not because of George W. Bush; it’s because of Barack Obama”, Walker said.
But Obama was not President when we were attacked on Sept. 11, 2001, George W. Bush was. When Donald Trump directed his attack at Jeb Bush for his brother’s invasion of Iraq, calling it a “disaster”, Obama wasn’t on the stage. And when Trump asked the other ten candidates who were on the stage if they agreed with Jeb Bush, that his brother George, “kept us safe”? Not one person said yes.
Last week marked the 14th anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, and more than 6,800 U.S. service members have been killed from the two wars in Iraq and Afghanistan started by Jeb’s brother, George, trying to “keep us safe.”
It’s safe to say that with thousands of our service members killed, tens of thousands of our service members wounded, and trillions of our tax dollars spent, Jeb Bush saying that his brother “kept us safe”, is a flat-out, no.
Wednesday’s GOP debate transcript, annotated