Analysis and reax to Saturday's GOP debate


Tonight’s debate was the most interesting of the year. Newt Gingrich, the new frontrunner, was the main target and he successfully deflected most of the attacks — even the character issue of his own martial infidelity. He’s very adept at thinking on his feet.

In contrast, Mitt Romney didn’t do very well. He made a major mistake offering a $10,000 bet to Rick Perry. It trivialized what is a large amount of money to most families and highlighted that Romney lives a very different life than most Americans. He’s in a real danger.

Each of the other four candidates on the stage — Rick Santorum, Michele Bachmann, Ron Paul and Rick Perry — scored points. I wouldn’t be surprised to see upward movement from one or more of them in the next few Iowa polls.

The order of finish when Iowans vote next month is still very much up in the air but Gingrich is still the clear frontrunner.

Tim Carney