The first Republican primary debate devolved into a yelling match between former Vice President Mike Pence and businessman Vivek Ramaswamy Wednesday night.
Fox News’ Bret Baier asked if Pence was part of the spending problem, noting an increased spending under the Trump administration.
Pence defended spending under the Trump administration, before invoking Ramaswamy.
“Vivek, you recently said a president can’t do everything. Well I’ve got news for you, Vivek … a president has to confront every crisis facing America. I will put our nation back on a path to growth and prosperity and restore fiscal responsibility, just as I did in Congress and as Governor and when I was Vice President.”
“This isn’t that complicated guys. Unlock American energy, drill, frack, burn coal, embrace nuclear. Put people back to work by no longer paying them more to stay at home,” Ramaswamy said. “I’m not sure I exactly understood Mike Pence’s comment but I’ll let you all parse it out. For me it’s pretty simple. That’s something a U.S. president can do with focus, and I’ll deliver it to you.”
“Well let me explain it to you, Vivek, if I can. I’ll go slower this time,” Pence quipped.
“You know I sometimes struggle with the reading comprehension,” Ramaswamy said sarcastically.
Pence touted his record of balancing budgets and cutting taxes before arguing, “now is not the job for on the job training.”
“We don’t need to bring in a rookie. We don’t need to bring in people without experience,” Pence said, prompting massive boo’s from the crowd as Ramaswamy laughed.
Baier and co-host Martha MacCallum had to quell the spat as Pence and Ramaswamy then yelled over one another before giving the floor to Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis.