A heated moment emerged during the first GOP presidential debate for the 2024 election held in Milwaukee tonight. The debate, which was scheduled from 9 to 11 p.m. Eastern, showcased an array of Republican candidates vying for the party’s nomination.
Moderated by Fox News anchor Bret Baier, the debate’s temperature spiked when the subject of former President Donald Trump was broached. The question posed was both controversial and critical: “If former President Trump is convicted in a court of law, would you still support him as your party’s choice? Please raise your hand if you would?”
In response, four candidates on the Fox debate stage raised their hands to affirm their continued support for Trump, even under such circumstances. The eyes of the nation were fixed on the stage as DeSantis and Pence hesitated before also raising their hands, clearly conflicted.
Only one candidate, Asa Hutchinson, refrained from raising his hand. His decision not to publicly endorse Trump under the given scenario made a clear statement about his stance, setting him apart from his fellow candidates.
“I am not going to support somebody who has been convicted of a serious felony or who has been disqualified under our Constitution and that is consistent with RNC rules and I hope everyone would agree with me,” Asa Hutchinson said.
The moment provided an opening for Vivek, who seized the opportunity to praise Trump and blast fellow candidate Chris Christie.
“President Trump, I believe, was the best president of the 21st century. It’s a fact,” Vivek stated, inciting applause from part of the crowd.
“Christie, your claim that Donald Trump is motivated by vengeance and grievance would be a lot more credible if your entire campaign were not based on vengeance and grievance against one man,” he continued.
BREAKING: Four GOP candidates on the Fox debate stage raised their hand when asked if they would support Trump for president if he becomes the GOP nominee.
After DeSantis and Pence looked around, they reluctantly raised their hands too.
Vivek then took the opportunity to praise… pic.twitter.com/C0XC5ClWU2
— Collin Rugg (@CollinRugg) August 24, 2023
As Chris Christie tried to defend himself, a wave of booing was directed at him to a point where Baier had to step in and halt the debate.
“Well, so listen, the more time we spend doing this, the less time they can talk about issues you want to talk about. So let’s just get through this section,” he urged, as he gestured for the audience to calm down.
Bret Baier has to stop the debate to tell the audience to stop booing Chris Christie. pic.twitter.com/uEwX5fuMU5
— Townhall.com (@townhallcom) August 24, 2023