All posts by Medill Reports

Election Update 2016

Here’s the latest Medill Reports Election 2016 Update. We spoke with Trevor Gervais, lead organizer at Common Cause Illinois, about election ad spending.

Posted at 7 p.m. CT

GOP Debate: Candidates bicker over true conservative policies

By Misha Euceph, Jane Hao and Jasmine M. Ellis

MILWAUKEE — After four debates, Republicans found themselves back at square one. This was the case at the Nov. 11 debate hosted by Fox Business Network and the Wall Street Journal not because of the lack of a clear front-runner, but because the most heated discussion at the Milwaukee Theatre centered around what it means to to be a Conservative and what policies characterize a Conservative politician.

Although Sen. Rand Paul and Sen. Marco Rubio started the conversation around the meaning of conservatism, Gov. Jeb Bush, Gov. John Kasich, Sen. Ted Cruz, Carly Fiorina, Donald Trump and Dr. Ben Carson brought up the question when talking about immigration and defense spending, illustrating the change in the Republican stance on the two issues since President Ronald Reagan’s time.

Sen. Paul brought up defense spending in response to Sen. Rubio’s tax plan, stating, “We have to decide what is Conservative.”
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GOP Debate: Moderators take a step back; ‘It wasn’t about us’

By Harry Huggins and Satvika Khera

MILWAUKEE — Tuesday night’s Republican presidential debate in Milwaukee proved a friendlier forum for both the candidates and moderators than CNBC’s debate two weeks ago.

The moderators, Fox Business Network hosts Maria Bartiromo and Neil Cavuto and Wall Street Journal editor-in-chief Gerard Baker, mainly stayed out of the way of candidates vying for screen time.

“Business issues can be riveting, because it wasn’t about us,” Cavuto said as he closed the debate. “It was about them.”

The moderators demanded substantive answers for minimum wage and tax policy questions, but stepped back and allowed bickering between candidates when it came to issues like foreign policy.
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GOP Debate: Christie challenges Hillary, regains ground in undercard

By Morgan Gilbard and Enrica Nicoli-Aldini

MILWAUKEE – The Republican “undercard” debate on Tuesday featured candidates proposing a litany of traditionally conservative plans and ideals – repealing Obamacare, shrinking government, eliminating the Internal Revenue Service, and turning away Syrian refugees.

But the candidate attacked by the others for his arguably less conservative record was the one who seemed to come out on top.

New Jersey Governor Chris Christie dodged attacks from his Republican opponents and focused his attention on striking at likely Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton.

“If we do not change course, if we follow the president’s lead, we will be in a worse off position,” Christie pointedly said of Clinton early in the evening.
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