And then, there were seven. That’s how many survived the poll-results culling of candidates by Fox Business Network for tonight’s sixth GOP primary debate after Rand Paul and Carly Fiorina were banished to the kids table. Paul pouted and is boycotting: “I won’t participate in anything that’s not first tier because we have a first-tier campaign.” It’s a mere 18 days until the Iowa caucuses, and tonight’s episode of what’s become the most popular new series on TV will star Donald Trump, Ted Cruz, Marco Rubio, Ben Carson, Chris Christie, Jeb Bush and John Kasich.

FBN’s Neil Cavuto and Maria Bartiromo, who moderated the network’s first GOP debate in November, are back for Round 2 from North Charleston, SC. Let the games begin.

Lisa de Moraes January 14, 20166:02 pm

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20166:05 pm

How many people picked up their newspapers this morning, Ted?

Lisa de Moraes January 14, 20166:06 pm

First question takeaway: GOP-ers still pick up newspapers


Erik Pedersen January 14, 20166:07 pm

Cruz: “Let me begin to answer your question with something entirely off-topic that’s sure to draw applause. What? I’m out of time? Well, then, let me just answer that by saying Hillary stinks.”

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20166:08 pm

No flag pin on John Kasich’s lapel? Borrrrrn to be wiiiiillllld!

Lisa de Moraes January 14, 20166:10 pm

Chris Christie first zinger of the night: SOTU was new TV show called “Storytime with Barak Obama”

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20166:12 pm

Chris Christie says that when he’s president, Hillary Clinton “won’t get within 10 miles of the White House.” Too … many … punchlines … can’t … decide.

Lisa de Moraes January 14, 20166:12 pm

First campaign promise of the night: Chris Christie promises restraining order against Hillary Clinton —  can’t come within 10 miles of Washington

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20166:14 pm

Way to cite that crusty Obama line about ISIS being the JV team, Jeb. But come to think of it, CNN still might have that on its screen with a “Breaking News” tag.

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20166:15 pm

The Hillary hatin’ is in full force 10 minutes in. Jeb says Hillary might be going between the White House and the courthouse in her first 100 days. Burn! 

Lisa de Moraes January 14, 20166:16 pm

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20166:16 pm

Marco Rubio will “win this war against ISIS,” dammit!

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20166:17 pm

Oh Ben Carson, whine AGAIN about not getting an early question? That is so played. 

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20166:18 pm

And an unsolicited tip to the Good Doctor: Never EVER make a joke in which you say, “Wake me up when…”

Lisa de Moraes January 14, 20166:18 pm

Ben Carson wins the award for Most Misplaced Self-Deprecating Humor when he said he was surprised to get a question so soon:  “I was going to ask you to wake me up when the time came.”

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20166:19 pm

Do I need to adjust my set, or does Neil Cavuto really need a lozenge?

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20166:20 pm

Immigration could be “the great Trojan horse,” Mr. Trump? Guess we’ll have to get the Mexicans to build it.

Lisa de Moraes January 14, 20166:21 pm

Trump’s first at bat: “Where are the women?”

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20166:22 pm

Cruz: “The New York Times and I don’t have the best of relationships.” Really? I’d say the paper is thrilled that you actually still subscribe.

Lisa de Moraes January 14, 20166:23 pm

Ted Cruz explains that NYT article: “I’m a poor guy who made a paperwork error.”

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20166:23 pm

Cruz blames festering bank-loan scandal on a “paperwork error.” Man, does this dude even OWN a computer?

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20166:25 pm

How many folks scoring along at home are watching this Schwarzenegger commercial and saying, “Now THAT’S a Republican candidate I could get behind!”?

Lisa de Moraes January 14, 20166:26 pm

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20166:27 pm

Did you hear that audience response to the pending birther question to Cruz? Hot crowd.

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20166:29 pm

A simple Trump grin elicits the biggest crowd response of the night — until Cruz parries with “the Constitution didn’t change, but the poll numbers have.” Line o’ the night thus far.

Lisa de Moraes January 14, 20166:29 pm

Cruz on Trump bringing up that he was born in Canada: “Glad we’re focusing on the important issues.”  Plays the “John McCain born in Panama” card and then throws down the “Donald Trump’s mother born in Scotland” card.

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20166:31 pm

Lisa de Moraes January 14, 20166:32 pm

Trump says he’s bringing up Cruz’s birth in Canada now because now Cruz is doing better in the polls. This is Trump’s best debate performance yet. 

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20166:34 pm

Are the Supreme Court justices watching this? Might be time to start boning up on citizenship law.

Lisa de Moraes January 14, 20166:34 pm

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20166:36 pm

More breaking news: Donald Trump is angry.

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20166:37 pm

Can anyone tell if Ben Carson is asleep yet?

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20166:39 pm

Has there been a single whiff of policy offered in the first 40 minutes?

Lisa de Moraes January 14, 20166:40 pm

Rubio vs. Christie: The undercard debate — going to the fridge time.

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20166:40 pm

Governor vs. Senators: The Christie Game Plan

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20166:41 pm

Wait, there has been some policy chatter: Beat Hillary Clinton. Beat Hillary Clinton. Beat Hillary Clinton. Beat Hillary Clinton. Beat Hillary Clinton. 

Lisa de Moraes January 14, 20166:42 pm

Ben:” I want to take this opportunity to wake up and tell you guys to stop squabbling.” 

Lisa de Moraes January 14, 20166:44 pm

Maria thinks she’s got a red meat question asking ominously about Bernie Sanders as a Socialist.  Kasich wisely dumps that line of thought saying no way Sanders going to be president.

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20166:45 pm

This already has had more entertaining moments than any of the first five debates — maybe combined.

Lisa de Moraes January 14, 20166:47 pm

Maria second red meater: “Bill Clinton’s past indiscretion and Hillary Clinton as enabler of sexual misconduct?”

Lisa de Moraes January 14, 20166:47 pm

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20166:47 pm

The Secular Progressives — comin’ to a House of Blues near you this summer!

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20166:48 pm

Man, I wish there was an open mike-feed on that stage during the commercials.

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20166:50 pm

Re this “Money Monster” movie ad: Maybe Julia Roberts talking to potential voters when she just said: “Any who can get — get out right now. Do not look up. Do not make eye contact. Just go.”

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20166:51 pm

George Clooney as Jim Cramer type: Is this a rerun of the CNBC GOP debate?

Lisa de Moraes January 14, 20166:53 pm

…or is it a movie about a guy who’s actually angrier than Trump?

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20166:54 pm

Lisa de Moraes January 14, 20166:56 pm

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20166:59 pm

Rush Limbaugh likely to lead tomorrow’s program with a line about the cameras catching Marco Rubio signaling a left turn:

Lisa de Moraes January 14, 20166:59 pm

Chris Christie: “Mr. President we’re not against you, we’re against your policies, you petulant child. Nothing personal.”

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20167:00 pm

Can’t spell “petulant child” without POTUS.

Wait, yes you can.
Erik Pedersen January 14, 20167:01 pm

Hey Ted, exactly when did Dianne Feinstein file to run for president?

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20167:02 pm

Kinda forgot there was a time bell. Great pace tonight.

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20167:03 pm

I thought all of Cruz’s “New York values” talk was about the price of apartments.

Lisa de Moraes January 14, 20167:03 pm

Cruz on “New York values”: Everyone understands.. socially liberal, pro abortion and pro gay marriage.

Lisa de Moraes January 14, 20167:06 pm

Trump’s response to Cruz saying not too many liberals come from New York:  William F. Buckley.

Trump then clubs Cruz with World Trade Center

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20167:06 pm

America, you’ve been warned:

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20167:08 pm

Bush: “Move U.S. embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.” That sounded dang near like a potential policy statement. Who had an hour and 10 minutes in the office pool?

Lisa de Moraes January 14, 20167:08 pm

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20167:09 pm

Question: Would John Kasich as GOP running mare secure Ohio for the Republicans?

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20167:10 pm

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20167:12 pm

Bartiromo tossing to commercial: “There’s much more ahead including the war against ISIS.” Must-see TV is back!

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20167:14 pm

Glad to see that hawks aren’t an endangered species in America.

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20167:14 pm

Hard to pick a winner at this point, but it ain’t Doc Carson.

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20167:15 pm

Wonder if Lindsey Graham dug being shown in the audience?

Lisa de Moraes January 14, 20167:15 pm

In addition to narcolepsy, Ben Carson is adding hearing loss?

Lisa de Moraes January 14, 20167:16 pm

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20167:16 pm

Haven’t heard from Cruz in a while — maybe he ducked out to check the Canadiens-Blackhawks score.

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20167:19 pm


Erik Pedersen January 14, 20167:20 pm

There it is — there’s that “we gotta stop with political correctness” line. I can exhale now.

Lisa de Moraes January 14, 20167:25 pm

Why does it seem only Kasich gets the bell?

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20167:28 pm

Is Jeb tweeting from the stage?

Lisa de Moraes January 14, 20167:31 pm

Ditto Cruz?

Lisa de Moraes January 14, 20167:33 pm

Running against New York Times almost as good as running against Hillary Clinton at a GOP debate.

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20167:33 pm

Cavuto to Trump: “I’m sorry, sir. You lost me.”

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20167:34 pm

Trump in his comfort zone talkin’ economics and free trade — and “how stupid the American leadership is.”

Lisa de Moraes January 14, 20167:34 pm

Meanwhile, CNN fact-checking tonight’s kids table debate:

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20167:35 pm

And boy, was he expecting big applause after that China rant.

Instead, the crowd seemed to say collectively: “I’m sorry, sir. You lost me.”

Lisa de Moraes January 14, 20167:36 pm

 Trump playing Veep footsie across the stage tonight, now saying “I’m liking” Kasich.

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20167:36 pm

Oh yeah, Marco Rubio’s playing too. Where ya been, guy?

Lisa de Moraes January 14, 20167:37 pm

Rubio on EPA: Employment Prevention Agency

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20167:39 pm

This is actual substance here. Only two hours tonight? Darn.

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20167:40 pm

Lisa de Moraes January 14, 20167:40 pm

New campaign slogan for Bush: Jeb! My Name Was Mentioned!

Lisa de Moraes January 14, 20167:41 pm

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20167:42 pm

Hey look — a standing ovation for the commercial break!

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20167:43 pm

Seriously, Paramount, why didn’t you just buy ALL the ad time for the Benghazi movie?

Lisa de Moraes January 14, 20167:44 pm

Rand Paul, boycotting the debate, taking his message directly to the people – at #GOPDebate:

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20167:45 pm

The bridge question goes to Christie? Really??

Lisa de Moraes January 14, 20167:48 pm

Takeaway: Christie loves bridges!

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20167:54 pm

Cruz going wayyy past the bell. Who does he think he is — Taraji P. Henson at the Golden Globes?

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20167:55 pm

Lisa de Moraes January 14, 20167:57 pm

How long does this go on? Didn’t Donald Trump negotiate this one too?

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20167:59 pm ad starts with: “Growing up, we were German.” Hey, we let that guy’s family in…

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20168:00 pm

It’s straight-up 8 o’clock. Better squeeze in Best Picture quickly.

Lisa de Moraes January 14, 20168:01 pm

When is the bathing suit competition? And talent?

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20168:02 pm

The Donald just pointed to his hair and said, “Whatever it is up here, I’m gonna use it.” (Yeah yeah, that was cheap — but irresistible.)

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20168:03 pm

“Seriously, man, I could deliver Ohio for you.”

Lisa de Moraes January 14, 20168:04 pm

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20168:04 pm

Worst. Heckle. Ever.

Lisa de Moraes January 14, 20168:04 pm

Shouting in the hall:

Lisa de Moraes January 14, 20168:06 pm

Kasich is talking about healing! Give him the bell!

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20168:07 pm

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20168:10 pm

Rubio-Cruz II: This time it’s personal.

Lisa de Moraes January 14, 20168:12 pm

Cruz’s best line of the night, to Rubio’s 11 attacks against him: “I appreciate you dumping your Oppo-research folder on the table”

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20168:15 pm

It’s 11:15 in the East, gents. Could be you’re losing the room…

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20168:18 pm

So who won, Deadline commenters?

Lisa de Moraes January 14, 20168:19 pm

Closing begins

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20168:19 pm

Closing statements = gone in 60 seconds.

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20168:20 pm

Kasich: “I’ll spend my final minute talking about my family rather than saying, you know, what the hell I’d do as president.”

Lisa de Moraes January 14, 20168:21 pm

Jeb Bush: Who can you count on. Results. Florida. Details. Credibility. zzzzzzz…

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20168:22 pm

Christie: “I’ve spent my whole life fighting.” Way to perpetuate those Jersey stereotypes, governor.

Lisa de Moraes January 14, 20168:23 pm

Ben Carson: I can give my closing statement with….. my… eyes…. closed. I’ve got a web site. Watch my hands.

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20168:25 pm

Rubio: “If you elect me, I’ll do the math and realize America was NOT founded 200 years ago.” #BicentennialWas1976

Lisa de Moraes January 14, 20168:26 pm

Ted Cruz: 13 Hours “****” Ted Cruz… Moms. Dads. Political correctness. I can say Radical Islamic Terrorism, nah, nah, nah!!

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20168:26 pm

Trump: “Last night, I stood with 75 construction workers. Half of them had tears flowing down their face. I had just pink-slipped them.”

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20168:27 pm

Cavuto: “We went a little bit over here.” Yes, by 25%. Now Trump is pissed, and he coming for you…

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20168:28 pm

Oh, and dig that wonderful martial music in the outro.

Erik Pedersen January 14, 20168:31 pm

That’s a wrap. Thanks for playing our game.