Republican Presidential Debate Highlights the Party’s Strength

By Dorothy Moon, IDGOP Chairwoman

August 25, 2023

Republicans have never been afraid of debating the issues. Unlike the other side, which conspires to silence and censor anyone who disagrees with them, Republicans embrace the marketplace of ideas. Wednesday’s Republican presidential primary debate was a perfect example. 

It was a privilege to have the opportunity to attend the first Presidential Debate as a guest of the RNC. The crowd was wild, and I was thrilled to see so many young engaged voters in the audience. Over the course of two hours in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, eight Republican contenders debated a wide range of pressing issues, including the Russia/Ukraine War, how much aid America should send to foreign nations, what limits the federal government can place on abortion, and what — if anything — should be done about climate change.

The shadow of 2020 dominated the discussion, as candidates debated what should have been done in the wake of a crooked election, the unjust Covid lockdowns, and the summer of rioting by BLM and Antifa.

Of course, one of the biggest subjects of discussion was not on the debate stage on Wednesday. Former President Donald Trump, who appears to be the frontrunner for the 2024 nomination, chose to skip the debate and instead spoke to Tucker Carlson on Twitter (now X). Rather than discussing his primary opponents, Trump took aim at the one man who is most responsible for our nation’s current predicament: President Joe Biden. Trump rightly called out Biden’s failed administration, from his foreign policy disasters to his plans to ban gas stoves. Trump also worried about the level of division in our country, but explained that as president he must represent all Americans.

These debates show the importance of next year’s presidential nominating caucus in Idaho. After the Secretary of State and the Legislature attempted to move the presidential primary from March to May, only to eliminate it entirely, and the Governor signed it into law, the Idaho Republican Party overwhelmingly agreed to host a nominating caucus on Saturday, March 2, 2024.

Registered Republicans are invited to meet with their neighbors and make their voices heard regarding the presidential nomination. The winner of Idaho’s caucus will earn our state’s delegates to the 2024 Republican National Convention. We invite all of the Republican presidential candidates to come to Idaho and make their cases to our voters — I have already received word that several will be making that trip.

Ever since America’s first Republican president, Abraham Lincoln, the GOP has led the way in wrangling with the most important issues of our time. The next president will shoulder the enormous responsibility of putting America back on track, which means the voice of the voters is more important than ever. Idaho Republicans are ready to play their part.

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