Republican Campaigns Go Negative in South Carolina

From left: Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX), Donald Trump, and Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL)
From left: Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX), Donald Trump, and Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL)

As the battle for South Carolina heats up, the GOP presidential candidates are not taking any chances with their words. The candidates are swinging attacks left and right to win the hearts and votes of The Palmetto State voters. Let the games begin.

We’ll start with Marco Rubio. At a town hall meeting in South Carolina this past week, Rubio directly attacked Donald Trump for his profanity, highlighting that The Donald acts in a way that our preachers and churches would be ashamed of:

You have a leading presidential saying profanity from a stage! All these things undermine what we teach our children.

Glenn Beck also used the S.C. spotlight to take a shot at the Trump campaign, accusing him of being a fake Christian:

Too many people right now are looking at a guy like Donald Trump and believing that that man has ever opened a Bible. That’s the biggest crock of bullcrap I’ve ever heard. We all know it.

Ted Cruz joined the group in the fight as well, attacking Trump for his pro-choice record:

If a candidate has spent 60 years of his life describing himself as very, very pro-choice. If a candidate has defended partial birth abortion for most of his adult life, we should not be surprised if, as president, he will not defend the right to life.

But the Trump Train remains in unfazed.

Trump continued with his same old antics. He went after Cruz (following an attack on Pope Francis) for “sleazy” surveys and polling. Trump accused the Cruz campaign of using push polls, robo-polls done by fake research companies, in this case conducted by Remington Research, a consulting firm started by Senator Cruz’s campaign manager. Cruz’s campaign denied any connection with the dirty deeds.

And meanwhile, Jeb Bush was struck from all sides by John Kasich’s campaign this past week. Bush was called out for his sky-high speaking fees as well as his negativity in the campaign:

I want to have a good legacy. I’m worried about Jeb. It’s all negative. How the heck can you sell negative?

Chris Christie, Carly Fiorina, and Jim Gilmore have all recently left the race, leaving the top contenders to fight amongst themselves. Who will come out on top in South Carolina? Will it be the best fighter? Or will it be the one who can most effectively argue the issues?

Carolina Baker works for the American Principles Project.