Rubio Implodes In GOP Debate

New York Magazine: “Chris Christie, whose strategy for the debate was clearly to take out Rubio, repeatedly called attention to the senator’s canned speech and accused him of using memorized sound bits to cover up for his complete lack of executive experience. That strategy worked. The exchange became an instant classic in the history of political smackdowns, especially because, incredibly, a clearly rattled Rubio continued to use his canned speech, repeating his attack on Obama a total of five times over the first half of the debate.”

James Fallows: “Most self-destructive debate performance since Quayle ’88 and J.B. Stockdale ’92.”

Tonight’s GOP Presidential Debate

The Republican presidential candidates will debate for the eighth time tonight in New Hampshire. You can watch on ABC News starting at 8 p.m. ET.

The GOP field has winnowed since the Iowa caucuses and will almost certainly do so again after votes are cast in New Hampshire on Tuesday. This may be the most important debate of the Republican nomination fight.

For members: Why Trump is a bigger target than Rubio.

Leave your reactions in the comments.

How to Be the GOP Candidate’s Wife

A Republican source provided the Huffington Post with “a decades-old guide, that the RNC printed and distributed, which offers a slew of condescending advice to the wives of Republican men who sought higher office.”

An excerpt:

“Campaigning, especially in a hotly contested race, can be very nervewracking. If you do go into it, keep your cool. Your husband’s election chances won’t be served by your loss of composure. And, whether you are out on the campaign or at home keeping things in order, your husband will need your cool head and manner to help him relax and unwind.”

“You are not the best judge of how his campaign should be run. Defer to the experts.”

Errors Found in Iowa Caucus Results

“Iowa Democratic Party officials are reviewing results from the Iowa caucuses and making updates where discrepancies have been found,” the Des Moines Register reports.

“The latest development follows widespread questions among Iowa Democrats and national media about the accuracy of the counts reported on caucus night, which saw the second-highest number of participants and closest result in Democrats’ caucus history.”

Lott Would Have Had Cruz Thrown Out

Former Sen. Trent Lott (R-MS) says if Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) had called him a liar on the Senate floor, as he did to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) last year, he would have taken a much harder line, The Hill reports.

Said Lott: “Having been majority leader, I’ve never had someone stand on the Senate floor and call me a liar. In fact, if I had been in the Senate at that time I would have moved to have him removed from the Senate chamber physically.”

Quote of the Day

“You develop an instant global consciousness, a people orientation, an intense dissatisfaction with the state of the world, and a compulsion to do something about it. From out there on the Moon, international politics look so petty. You want to grab a politician by the scruff of the neck and drag him a quarter of a million miles out and say, ‘Look at that, you son of a bitch’.”

— Apollo astronaut Edgar Mitchell, quoted by Space Flight Insider.

Clinton Effectively Giving Up in New Hampshire

“Hillary Clinton is way behind in New Hampshire, and she is running there like a candidate prepared to cede the first-in-the-nation primary,” the Los Angeles Times reports.

“As polls show Sen. Bernie Sanders continuing to hold a sizable lead here, Clinton strategists are positioning their campaign to weather a loss here, shifting their focus to holding Latino voters in Nevada, which votes Feb. 20, and then win in South Carolina, with its large black population, the following week.”

Politico: Can New Hampshire’s political class save Clinton?