In his first answer, the first answer of the night, Texas Senator Ted Cruz addressed the “elephant not in the room,” the fact that GOP front-runner Donald Trump skipped the debate.
After thanking the people of Iowa and saying if he is elected president, Iowa “will not be flyover country, it will be fly-to country,” Cruz took a moment to play the role of Trump. “Secondly, let me say, I am a maniac, and everyone on the stage is stupid, fat and ugly. And Ben [Carson], you’re a horrible surgeon. Now that we’ve gotten the Donald Trump portion out of the way…” Cruz said to rousing applause and laughter.
“I want to thank everyone here for showing the men and women of Iowa the respect to show up and make the case to the people of this state and the people of the country why each of us believe we would make the best commander in chief.”