The North State Journal continues to bring you a weekly update of the race to the White House. We’ll provide a weekly wrap-up of the controversial comments and breakdown of the top candidates every week so that you can stay up to date.
Let the votes begin! Today, Iowa caucus-goers will determone their preference in a tight race. Polls show Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton and Republican candidate Donald Trump have a slight lead.
On the Democratic side
Hillary Clinton: Clinton continues to receive questions regarding her email server controversy. Whether she is an honest person was asked during the town-hall style meeting hosted by CNN in Iowa last week. It was also discussed on ABC. “It was not the best choice,” Clinton admitted on “This Week.”
Bernie Sanders: “We will raise taxes. Yes, we will,” Sanders said in the town hall meeting. Sanders explained he would raise taxes to reduce health insurance premiums. Meanwhile Sanders’ campaign formally opened its Charlotte office Sunday. This is the campaign’s second office in the state. Aisha Dew is Sanders is North Carolina’s state director. The Charlotte office is located at 2424 N. Davidson Street.
On the Republican side
Donald Trump: With Trump absent from the Republican debate, he held a rally nearby in Iowa with guest speakers, presidential candidates Rick Santorum and Mike Huckabee. He also raised $6 million for veterans, according to his campaign. Meanwhile, Cruz attacked the New York businessman, saying Trump and Sanders have the same position on health care. “Ted Cruz is a total liar,” said Trump on Sunday while on CBS. “I am so against Obamacare. I’ve been saying it for two years in my speeches, I’m going to repeal and replace Obamacare.”
Ted Cruz: “It’s the same reason, actually, that Donald engages in insults, because he can’t defend his substantive record,” Cruz told CNN. “His position on health care is the same as Bernie Sanders’. They both support socialized medicine, expanding Obamacare to put the government in charge of our health care.” Cruz had the opportunity to win the stage without Trump at Thursday’s debate, but Marco Rubio seemed to shine.
Marco Rubio: “You want to trump Trump on immigration,” Rubio remarked. “This is the lie that Ted’s campaign is built on, and Rand touched upon it: That he’s the most conservative guy and everyone else is a RINO (Republican In Name Only). The truth is, Ted, throughout this campaign, you’ve been willing to say or do anything in order to get votes.” Rubio was accused by Jeb Bush of flip flopping his stance on immigration. Rubio argued Bush did as well.
Jeb Bush: Bush received a huge round of applause when he said, “Get the lawyers off the damn backs of the military once and for all.” Bush seemed to be more comfortable on stage without Trump there, although he did joke, “”I kind of miss Donald Trump, he was a little teddy bear to me.”
Chris Christie: Christie got applause when he noted, “This is why you need to send someone from outside of Washington to Washington. I feel like I need a Washington-to-English dictionary converter, right?… This is what makes a difference when you’re a governor. You can change your mind. Ted can change his mind. Marco can change his mind. It’s perfectly legal in this country to change your mind. But when you’re a governor, you have to admit it. You can’t hide behind parliamentary tricks.”
Ben Carson: Carson received the least amount of speaking time. He has since argued there needs to be a time clock. During the debate, Carson argued, “I have had more 2 a.m. phone calls making life and death decisions.” Carson added, “”I have put complex teams together to deal with complex problems.”
Republican legislators wanted North Carolina to be a player on the field instead of the sidelines when deciding the 2016 presidential candidate. Thus, they voted to move our primary to March 15. However, if Donald Trump wins Iowa, New Hampshire and South Carolina, then North Carolina will not be a huge factor in determining the Republican presidential candidate. Yet, it appears the Tarheel State could be important when determining the Democratic nominee. Remember, North Carolina did play a part in the 2008 race between President Obama and Hillary Clinton. (Obama won North Carolina.)
North Carolina is one of five states voting on March 15. Check back here next Monday morning for your weekly re-cap of the presidential race to the White House.