The Republicans squared off in a forum in New Hampshire last night, but the main attraction couldn’t be bothered to show up. The New York Times has a review.
After weeks of preparing for a smash-mouth debate with Donald J. Trump, 14 Republican candidates found themselves instead Trump-less but sandwiched into a constricting format on Monday night, delivering strikingly uneven performances just days before the first big test of the presidential primary contest.
Rather than making the other contenders look more presidential, however, the event, at St. Anselm College in Manchester, N.H., seemed to shrink the candidates. Assembled in the front row, the Republicans gawked as each rival took his or her turn on stage, looking at times as if they were being forced to sit through a tedious school assembly.
To be fair, this was on C-SPAN, so for them it was like a very special episode of Keeping Up With the Kardashians.