Overall: the debate is a heck of a lot more expansive and educational, and precisely zero of it was because of Donald Trump. Well done, Trump. Well done.
- Ted Cruz is already pivoting to a national campaign. He is deliberately setting himself up as the guy that you vote for if you like Trump’s shtick but you don’t want Trump to have the nuclear football for real. It seems to be working. Also: Cruz got a lot of jabs in at Trump tonight, including his closing statement. Note: I think that Ted Cruz is the only one left of the not-Trumps with a realistic path to the nomination.
- John Kasich actually had some things to say! I liked his comments on Tienanmen Square. Kasich is here to win Ohio, then do… whatever the heck it is that Kasich will do next. Note: I want Kasich to win Ohio.
- Marco Rubio has the home field advantage, and used it to the hilt. Even more so than Kasich, Rubio is there to win his state. And he didn’t miss a step when it came to Floridian issues. He left the stage to chants of “Marco.” Note: I want Rubio to win Florida.
- Donald Trump was… very low energy. Low-energy Trump is about as incoherent as high-energy Trump, and considerably less entertaining. I don’t know if he wanted to come across as… passive as he did. And Trump’s final statement was pretty much an admission that he’s trying to inject a lot of Democrats into the mix.