Final Iowa Republican Debate Avoids Rural Issues



The initial reaction is that nobody gained or lost too much in the discussion about mostly domestic issues in the last Republican debate before the Iowa caucuses. The reaction mostly has been a ho-hum and a stifled yawn. (Although we at the Yonder appreciated Fred Thompson's refusal to answer a question by raising his hand.)

Iowa columnist David Yepsen says Fred Thompson did the best, since he "was specific, good-humored and exuded an executive persona." The New York Times said all the candidates "looked exhausted."


Okay, but did they say anything? We heard John McCain say (again) that he opposed subsidies for ethanol. We heard all the candidates say they wanted to lower taxes and spending. (Rudy Giuliani said he could see a 15% cut in non-military spending.) We heard Fred Thompson say the largest impediment to quality education in the U.S. was the National Education Association (the teachers' union). McCain and Giuliani said global warming was "real." The Yonder is looking for a transcript of the debate and will report if there was anything said that hadn't been said before.

The candidates were civil, but they didn't have much to say to rural residents