|Standing Room only at the Redlands Tea Party Event|
John Cox did not look comfortable on the stage. Many times, he was turned in on himself. He scowled a lot, and much of the time he looked very uncomfortable.
You can tell just by looking at the posture of the two candidates who was winning and who was losing!
The blows began trading off between the two at the outset. Allen allowed Cox to go first since it should be "age before beauty." Funny.
The biggest slams came from Allen against Cox because the Chicago-born businessman voted for Gary Johnson in the general election instead of Donald Trump. He had supported Cruz for the long haul, as did I. There is nothing wrong with having a difference of opinion, and I stuck to my guns for Cruz up to the June primary.
I voted for Trump in the general election, and I am glad that I did. I really can't believe that Cox would not get behind the nominee. Forget concerns about illegal immigration, the Second Amendment, or climate issues. Let's talk about the Supreme Court of the United States! Justice Antonin Scalia had passed away on February 2016. Did we really want to risk allowing Crooked Hillary to nominate the next Supreme Court justice?
Allen slammed Cox repeatedly on this issue. "A vote for anyone else besides Donald Trump as a vote for Hillary Clinton!" The audience roared many tims when Allen touted his support for President Trump. I cannot run away from how moving and persuasive it is to have a gubernatorial candidate does not run away from our President. I honestly believe that the President did worse in California only because of the lower-tier candidates refused to announce and support the Presidential nominee!
(Of course, there's also the avalanche of Big Labor money, illegal alien voters, and a growing class of dependents who vote for a living instead of working or a living).
Cox thought that he had landed a killing blow against Travis Allen when he talked at length about the donations which Travis Allen had made to Democratic candidates in the past, including Barbara Boxer and Gavin Newsom. This argument falls apart very quickly, though, since President Trump had donated to a number of Democratic candidates and elected officials in the past, including Hillary Clinton, Kamala Harris, and even Cryin' Chuck Schumer. Yet today we see Donald Trump is running Washington for the people's interests, and not for the Swamp, the Deep State, and not the K Street Lobbyists looking to enrich themselves at our expense.
I thought these petty jabs back and forth got pretty boring after awhile. Yes, yes, Travis donated a few thousand dollars 8 years ago to a few Democrats. The slightly bigger issue for me is that Cox did vote for Gary Johnson, and Allen didn't let him get away with it. Johnson supports the full legalization of all drugs. Johnson was an open-borders zealot who would support and expand DACA. He was also a full-on baby-killer when one considers his stance on abortion, gay marriage, and other left-wing cultural stances. Crazy stuff.
The biggest issue is immigration in the state of California, and even before the debate began I took Allen's campaign manager to task because he did not mention his opposition to sanctuary state and his opposition to illegal immigration on the fliers passed around for the crowd. It looks like Allen at least got the message. Immigration is on the forefront of many people's minds in the state of California. The reason why so many public systems are overburdened, a big reason why the roads are falling apart, the schools are terrible, crime is up while quality of life is crashing all fall on illegal immigration.
Allen came out swinging on that issue, and has been leading on while serving in the state assembly. Not only did he author legislation defunding sanctuary cities in California, but his keynote witness for the legislation, Agnes Gibboney, asked a question about stopping illegal aliens from entering the state and killing Americans. While Allen already had established a direct relationship with this angel mom, John Cox really fumbled to show any kind of connection with her--and with the audience as a whole. It was pretty painful watching John Cox struggle in front of the audience.
At least fives times, Cox repeated that he was not charismatic or big on rhetoric. UGH! Bad move. Was he intentionally trying to insult the audience? Was he trying to further hurt his chances of getting elected? Cox was not helping himself. In fact, right at the beginning, his rousing "Are you ready for a Republican Governor?" anouncement seemed forced, as though he was trying to be like Travis.
Cox came to the Redlands Tea Party Patriots meeting already as an underdog. He should follow the same example as former Assemblyman David Hadley and drop out of the race. The fact that he refused to support President Trump is just too great for him to overcome at this point. All the money spent on Facebook ads and TV commercials are not going to help him.
The candidates talked pretty much the same on every issue. Immigration and marijuana were two major issues debated, especially the role and the responsibilities of the state government to comply with federal law.
This debate was going to be pretty difficult, I thought, since both candidates are striving as much as they could to get the same hard-core audience. I really was surprised that the candidates and the panel asking questions did not diversify the set of ideas and issues to discuss. There was one question about helping veterans, for example. Another question from Mountain View Republican Club Judi Neal talked about affordability for senior citizens trying to get by on a fixed income.
The debate questions went from the panel to the audience, as men and women lined up to give their take on what issues need to be confronted, and what we need to see from our next governor.
Some of the people deliberately wanted to nail John Cox on donations he made to the MayDay PAC, which has connections to George Soros. He donated $5,000, of which only $2,200 went to Republicans. A few other questions went after Cox for not voting for Trump.
My question dealt with illegal immigration, specifically with what actions they could take as governor to enforce all federal immigration, and not just with calling a special session of the state legislature or filing a law suit.
I was not totally thrilled with their answers, let's just say:
Winner: Travis Allen, Hands Down. He was polling ahead of John Cox before the debate, and he was definitely ahead after the debate. Republican leaders and party brass up and down the state need to wake up and realize that they need Trump. They need to stop running from the President and his rough-and-tumble brand of politics. There are Democrats in the state of California who voted for Trump, as well as Independents. Minority voters in abandoned, urban ghettos throughout the state are demanding law and order, too.
Allen was the winner on Election Day 2016, and he won this debate hands down. The only question remains whether John Cox will get the message and drop out.