There’s Iowa Nice, and then there’s Iowa Smart. Both were on display on Tuesday and Wednesday nights (12/12 and 12/13) on CNN at 8 p.m. (CDT).
After watching the GOP Town Hall Meetings on CNN with Ron DeSantis and Vivek Ramaswamy I have to say that the people of my home state did Iowa proud. Their questions were so much better than any of those asked by the professional media people moderating the “real” debates recently that there really was no comparison.
Instead of dwelling on the issue of trans-gender sex change operations for youth—a topic that affected fewer than 1,200 people in 2019, the peak year for such surgeries—-these rank-and-file Iowans asked questions that matter to all of us, on the following topics:
- U.S. Economic prosperity
- Israel vs. Ukraine support from the U.S.
- The border issue
- Social Security
- Abortion (a notable exception during the GOP debate hosted by Megan Kelly)
- Trade relations with China
- Why DeSantis would be different/better than Trump as President
- Nikki Haley’s support from big business
- DeSantis’ position on fracking
Yes, there was a question on a purely Iowa issue, the Satanic Temple display at the State Capitol in Des Moines. And the Pork-on-a-stick at the Iowa State Fair was, perhaps, not a Biggie, but kudos, Iowans!
When Vivek Ramaswamy graced the Grandview College stage on Wednesday night, December 12, 2023, the people of Iowa came through again, asking Vivek Ramaswamy how he would be different from Trump; the border; Vivek’s Hindu religion in a largely Christian state and nation; Putin’s response to Ramaswamy’s proposed Ukraine solution; inequity in wealth between the top 1% wealthiest Americans and the middle class; a president’s demeanor while serving as the nation’s leader; challenges he had experienced as a candidate because of his age and his position on diversity programs.
The questioning did go off the rails a bit when Ramaswamy (his own worst enemy) went on and on and on about various debunked conspiracy theories and what he had learned about Iowans, in general. (They don’t call it “Iowa Nice” for no reason.)
I’ll write more about their responses in the next few days, but…Damn! You did us proud, questioners. Give those Talking Heads some tips for future debates.