There was always a remote possibility that the GOP candidates and Fox News moderators Thursday night would completely ignore the absence of Donald Trump. Instead, the job to dismiss the Trump controversy and move on was set up from the start, with the job going to Ted Cruz.

Not everyone thought a dig at Trump was the best way to kick off a debate Trump was boycotting.

  • Jake Wilde

    Chris Wallace acts like he hates all of them….

    • JV

      he does lol

      • Kawfy

        always has

    • NewWest 123

      He does cause he is a left wing loon!

  • nc ✓s & balances

    No, Trump is NOT “looming over” the debate. Ted Cruz made short work of him with his perfect answer to that first question.

    It’s actually refreshing to have a non-Trump debate. You can visualize what this campaign might have looked like without him. Nice.

    • wrestlefan01

      exactly after those first two questions the rest has been trump absent

      • idalily

        It’s quite refreshing.

        • Andrew

          It is; it would be far more refreshing if Fox were more interested in asking questions about policy rather than politics (although most of the candidates are trying to bring it back to the issues). Junkies like us understand the questions and the context behind them, but I’m guessing the vast majority of viewers are wondering what relevance if any this debate has to the things they are most concerned with.

    • Karla1953

      And what the choices might have been without the freak show where they all got to put their views etc out there without everything needing to be Yuge…………………..

    • Hashtag pundit

      Indeed. You actually get to hear from and hear about people who aren’t Trump.

    • manickernel

      Trump scored a major win with his event.

      • JV

        LMAO

      • grais

        Trump who?

        • globalcrap

          The guy who voted for O Bogus, and is a good friend of the Benghazi Clinton’s.

      • Acuda4me ✓Please!

        For whom?

      • badazoth

        don’t tase me bro i already killed all my brain cells thru crack

      • Maxx

        No secret who Matt Drudge loves. Instead of offering up a poll for who won tonight’s debate, he’s polling “who do you want for President?” Since when has he done that following a debate?

        Calling all Breit bots…your fella’s latest popularity poll is waiting.

        • Andy Rigo ✓ᵗᵉʳʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

          Drudge pisses me off. He unleashed the GOPe Bloody Thursday against Newt Gingrich in 2012 which effectively ended his campaign. So, this election cycle, he’s pimping his new establishment boy, Trump.

          • Eliska

            I am out of there and Breitbart for good.

      • Kawfy

        oh yeah? how? specifics please

      • Eva_Galley

        That’s not what the Frank Luntz focus group thought!

    • JV

      indeed he did!!!!

    • DeplorableMessMan ✔ JesseMessy

      Never thought we’d see the day (huh NC) when Twitchy sounds just like the Associated Press, as in this link which implies that Trump somehow bought & owns the party now & every member therein must pay tribute to him or begone. What’s it gonna take, I wonder, for TrumpCONs to “get it” that the Left wants DT to be the nominee since the Left knows it’s a cinch for Hillary to beat an unelectable populist-panderer who’s being passed off as a conservative? Alas, Twitchy refuses to free itself of this “Help-I’ve-Fallen-for-Trump-and-I-can’t-Get-Up” mentality. What a waste. http://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/for-gop-debate-was-glimpse-of-what-could-have-been/ar-BBoRHrm?li=BBnb7Kz

      • nc ✓s & balances

        Eh, I think Twitchy’s still pretty fair if you balance everything out. Specially when you compare it to a lot of other sites. Plus, we’ve got the best commenting community around, don’t you think? 😉

        • DeplorableMessMan ✔ JesseMessy

          …Yep.

  • Maxx

    The moderators are a bit testy this evening. Chris Wallace looks like he’s one Ted Cruz interruption away from reenacting the last ten minutes of Scarface and Megyn, God bless her, looks like the last ten seconds of Star Trek.
    http://images2.fanpop.com/images/quiz/192000/192437_1240162289102_500_375.jpg

    • Karla1953

      I think he always looks like that 🙂

    • Knitwit

      Yeah, I thought so, too. Especially when every question that was asked of Cruz, his answer was immediately stepped on, while others were allowed to have their supporters yelping, clapping and screaming for several seconds. Why are they trying to shove Rubio or Paul down our throats?? I really don’t mind Paul, but Rubio’s duplicity with the gang of eight is a step too far for ME. (Please note I said for ME…not stepping on anyone else’s right to support him). I like Paul’s stance on our constitutional rights. We’ve given up way too much out of the fear mongering. He’s right that all that data collection didn’t and wouldn’t have stopped one of the tragedies we’ve been through or have happened elsewhere.

  • D H

    Donald who?

  • kennyraisin

    Watching Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.

    • Hashtag pundit

      Grading papers, getting caught up on Heroes: Reborn. No spoilers plz.

      • kennyraisin

        Ok

      • Andy Rigo ✓ᵗᵉʳʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

        Augustus Gloop gets sucked into the chocolate pipe. Hope I didn’t spoil it for you 😀

  • Dwayne Mountain Dew Camacho

    Cruz beats everyone in debates….

    I cant wait for him to dismantle Bernie….(cuz lets face it…Hillary will be in Jail by then).

    • badazoth

      from your mouth to gods ears

    • Acuda4me ✓Please!

      Hillary’s not going to jail. (She know’s all about Obama’s secret server or something.)

    • Kawfy

      won’t happen…should happen….but won’t

      • globalcrap

        Praying for a miracle, sometimes they happen

        • Kawfy

          me too…not out of vengeance but out of blind justice. Tired of two sets of rules

          • globalcrap

            Amen, If America only had a Justice department that worked for America , instead of the O Bogus regime.

  • vetgal1970

    Who’s the dope that gave him a dial line? Sorry pal, no showy no winny.

  • Dan Abbett

    Who needs to watch the debate? One way or another, those in the media will tell us how to score the answers, which comment was good, which was flat, who won and why we are obligated to see it their way.

    And after the debate, they will all gather in their belligerently biased circles and give us a play by play of how they expect us to score it all, forget how we saw it. I am so sick of the agenda driven media acting to deliberately manipulate our opinions I am on the verge of hostile.

    • vetgal1970

      I never listen to the after debate pontifications between the talking heads. They are extremely irritating the way they try to reinterpret what was said. I make up my own mind who won for me.

    • Karla1953

      Why would what they say matter to anyone……………….sure I may catch it for a minute but they matter not to me at all. I have always had my own opinions and done my own research and that was when it required more than multiple Google searches LOL. It is the reason I watch no cable in the evening news wise or listen to talk radio………….they all have their own agenda even those accusing others of the same thing. JMO

  • D H

    I wish these guys would talk about beating Bernie Sanders (you know, just in case Hillary misses making the finish line)

    • nc ✓s & balances

      Rubio just did.

  • Hashtag pundit

    Dear Trump,

    Bye Felicia.

  • Stephen

    Gee, life does goes on after all…

  • JV

    CLASSIC and BRILLIANT move by Cruz

    • spiritof76

      LOL

      • JV

        LMAO

  • spiritof76

    Cruz looks weak….. looks very establishment.

    • JV

      lol

    • grais

      It’s the suit.

    • JV

      actually the weakest looking guy is jeb – he actually looks like a hanger at the dry cleaners – he’s a virtual stick boy up there, emaciated, looks like he hasn’t eaten in months

    • badazoth

      put down the crack pipe

  • grais

    And he hasn’t been mentioned since.

    • JV

      but his yuuuuuge ego is still omnipresent

  • wrestlefan01
    • nc ✓s & balances

      Shh, don’t tell the Trump people. It’ll get ’em cranky.

      • wrestlefan01

        i can see it now..” fox news debate was sponsored by google so there for they are lying for fox news”

      • The_Kat ✓vilified

        Oh they are going with the crap the tweeters did that ratings were so high because everyone was talking about Teh Donald at the debate. *rolls eyes*

  • JD Son✓MyWizIzTheShiz

    It was a nice change to see actual civil debate.

  • ozconservative

    Just watched this from Bill Whittle…..hammer meet nail head!!!

    • Deplorable AMERICAN™✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

      I love this guy. Watched a lot of his stuff over the last few days. I like the one where he says he’d vote for Trump’s hat.

  • Doc Farmer✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ ᵈᵉᵖˡᵒʳᵃᵇˡᵉ

    As a proud Trumpanzee (I love that term! and Kudos to Jill for letting me steal it), I’ve got to give props to Cruz for that killer opening! It was brilliant, funny and it at least tried to get the spectre out of the room (but frankly, that wasn’t gonna happen with the mods). Serious Kudos!

    [absolutely no sarcasm here]

  • Jerry Shelton

    Well now lets just wait and see what the polls have to say

  • http://wandererswaysite.wordpress.com Wanderer

    I kind of expected better from Ted. I can understand what he was doing but I don’t think that was his best move.

    Oh well, I’m not a consultant for a reason.

  • maggieinWY

    I’m only grateful to Trump because he eliminated Jeb! for us. I like Ted Cruz, but don’t think anyone but a big-mouthed rich jerk could’ve gotten rid of Jeb!.

  • Bo

    Since fox is a news organization please tell us WHO is the “SECRET BACK CHANNEL”that says the AYATOLLA and PUTIN were going to treat TRUMP unfairly if he becomes the President of the United States. Maybe it might be the RUBIO supporter who works for FOX ( do you reckon). After all, who knows who MIGHT be the ominous “SECRET BACK CHANNEL”.