Certainly one of the most mainstream-media-blasted issues in the race for the Republican presidential nomination has been Trump's call to put a temporary ban on non-American Muslims entering the U.S. It's stirred up a debate among Christians and conservatives as well, and it was certainly a major issue in the CNN GOP debate Tuesday evening in Las Vegas. Here's how some of the candidates handled it:
Trump: Donald doubled-down on his position saying, "Our country is out of control. People are pouring across the southern border. I will build a wall — it will be a great wall. People will not come in unless they come in legally. Drugs will not pour through that wall. As far as other people — like in the migration — where they’re going tens of thousands of people having cell phones with ISIS flags on them — I don’t think so, Wolf, they’re not coming to this country, and if I’m president, and if Obama has brought some to this country, they are leaving — they’re going. They’re gone."
Bush: Jeb got into a heated exchanged with Trump, saying "Banning all Muslims will make it harder for us to do exactly what we need to do, which is to destroy ISIS. We need a strategy. We need to get the lawyers off the back of the war fighters. Right now under President Obama, we've created this standard that is so high that it's impossible to be successful in fighting ISIS. We need to engage in the Arab world to make this happen. It's not a serious proposal to say to the people that you're asking for your support that they can't come into the country to even engage in a dialogue with us. That's not a serious proposal."
Cruz: Ted defended Trump's direction but wanted to take it further, saying, "I introduced legislation in the Senate that I believe is more narrowly focused at the threat, which is radical Islamic terrorism. What my legislation would do is suspend all refugees for three years from countries where ISIS or al Qaeda control substantial territory. In this instance, there are millions of peaceful Muslims across the world in countries like India where there is not the problems we are seeing in nations that have territories controlled by al Qaeda or ISIS, and we should direct at the problem, focus on the problem, and defeat radical Islamic terrorism. It’s not a war on faith, it’s a war on [a] political and theocratic ideology that seeks to murder us.”
Graham: Lindsey did not at all welcome Trump's position, saying, “I am sorry, [Trump] does not represent us. Leave the faith alone, go after the radicals that kill us all. Donald Trump has done the one single thing you cannot do, declare war on Islam itself. ISIL would be dancing in the street — they just don’t believe in dancing."
Santorum: Rick said, "What Donald Trump was saying was nothing against Muslims. His comment was against this administration who doesn’t have a policy to properly vet people coming into this country. He brings up a legitimate issue. The fact of the matter is, not all Muslims are jihadists and no one — including, I suspect, Donald Trump — would say that. But the reality is all jihadists are Muslims — that’s a reality. And we have to stop worrying about offending some people and start worrying about defending all Americans...because we’re not right now.”
Pataki: George attacked Trump in his opening remarks, saying "The leading Republican candidate Donald Trump continually demonizes and demeans millions of Americans, And when confronted about it, laughs it off. [He's] not fit to be president of the United States. Our party, as Republicans, need to nominate a strong leader who will unite as Republicans. But more importantly, unite us as Americans, committed to destroying and defeating radically Islam, restoring our confidence in our safety right here and our belief in freedom, and that the best of America is ahead of us."
Who do you think best defended or attacked Trump's plan?