‘The First Thing I’d Do As President Is Drink More”

Photo: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images.
Before the real show got on the road, CNN hosted a JV debate for four underdog candidates — former New York Governor George Pataki, South Carolina Senator Lindsey Graham, Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal and former Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum. Questions were asked, President Obama and Donald Trump were dissed, all were standing in front of a very large plane. All in all, we got the expected: Conservatives feel we're at war with Islam, we should be deporting immigrants instead of welcoming them, and President Obama has done a very bad job. We're not on board with any of this, but we picked the five best moments anyway. Consider this an entertaining appetizer before the big leagues make you want to vom. 1. "I don't think a 14-year-old should be arrested for bringing a clock to school" —Gov. Bobby Jindal

Word. Jindal talking about Ahmed Mohamed, the high school freshman who was cuffed in front of his classmates for building a clock his teachers refused to believe wasn't a bomb. This is probably the one sane thing that any of the four candidates in the second tier debate said; however, Jake Tapper had to push Jindal super-hard to say it in the first place. We're hoping to see more candidates saying #IStandWithAhmed, though we don't expect anyone to address the bigger issue — Islamophobia in the United States — head on. 2. "First thing I'm going to do as president, we're going to drink more." —Sen. Lindsey Graham

Graham was hands-down the best debater in his generally underwhelming quartet. His humor is largely to thank for that title. Graham's proclamation followed his waxing nostalgic about Republican standard-bearer Ronald Reagan's willingness to knock a few back while discussing policy with super-liberal Democrat Tip O'Neill. 3. "I wasn’t the best law student. By the end of this debate, it’ll be the most time I’ve spent in any library." —Sen. Graham

The debate takes place in the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library in Simi Valley, California. Graham received his degree from University of South Carolina Law School in 1981 and clearly did not spend very much time studying for it. This is also a good time to mention the enormous plane serving as the backdrop for tonight's debate — a.k.a. VC-137C SAM 27000, which served as Air Force One for presidents Nixon through George W. Bush — is a mainstay in the Reagan Library. 4. "My parents are not Indian-American, not Asian-American. They are American." —Gov. Jindal

Jindal did not speak quite as accurately about his family history when asked about immigration as he did about Ahmed Mohamed's innocence. In fact, Jindal's parents migrated to the United States from Punjab, India, while the now governor was still in-utero. Though both his parents became citizens — his mother in 1976, and his father in 1986 — and Jindal rebuffs the idea that he is an "anchor baby," his parents are, in fact, Indian-American. 5. "Planned Parenthood is selling baby parts across this country." —Gov. Jindal

That the GOP hates Planned Parenthood is not exactly a secret; even so, this was a stretch. Planned Parenthood is not selling baby parts. Actually, the only group discombobulating things is the anti-abortion one that caused this summer's enormous controversy by distributing totally doctored videos of Planned Parenthood officials.

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