Hiller Instinct: This GOP debate was a rerun

This debate was less noisy, but — on the issues — it was a rerun.

If the road to the White House were an interstate highway, the debates have become the giant service plazas beside the road.

After a while, they all look alike.  

That’s why — when you come to a new one — you think you’ve  been there before.

And, in a way, you have. 

So you expect Donald Trump to win the debate, no matter what he says, because nothing he’s said in the past has hurt him.
 
And, tonight, he didn’t say anything that should.

He stood his ground; he was clear, and restrained.
 
For his opponents, it must be painful to debate someone who always seems to win — but that’s what Gov. Kasich, Sen. Cruz, and Sen. Rubio have been up against for months.

They try to bring Trump down; they fail.
 
In this debate Marco Rubio was the strongest of the three, but — even together — they weren’t strong enough to push Trump out of the drivers seat in the Republican race.

Which made them all losers, because Trump still has them in his rear view mirror, and their time is running out.

Another loser was America.  Whether you’re a Republican or Democrat, the day after the election we’re all going to be Americans.  

But each side has contempt for the other, so — whoever wins — it’s sure to be ugly.  

The Republicans have another debate scheduled in two weeks, but it may not matter.

If Donald Trump wins the primaries next week in Florida and Ohio, none of his opponents will be able to talk him out of the nomination–they’ll have to take it from him at the convention.

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