Wall Street Journal Rips GOP Candidates For 1 Major Debate Failure

It's the "elephant not in the room," said the newspaper's conservative editorial board.

Republican candidates at the second Donald Trump-less 2024 primary debate “largely left the front-runner” former president “off the hook,” the Wall Street Journal complained in a new editorial.

Their “main oversight continues to be that with rare exceptions they are giving Mr. Trump a pass,” wrote the newspaper’s conservative editorial board.

Former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie and Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis did hit Trump “for not showing up to debate,” the board noted, while former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley called out Trump for what he “didn’t do about China.”

And while the Journal acknowledged the candidates could be “wary of offending MAGA voters,” it explained how to challenge Trump’s record “without sounding like the left-wing scolds at CNN or MSNBC” — by referring to his poor election record and focusing on policy differences.

Trump is “the elephant not in the room, and it is no service to voters to ignore him until a week before the Iowa caucuses in January,” the board concluded.

Current polling averages show Trump in first place with about 56% support, DeSantis in second with 14% and Haley in third with 5%.

Trump skipped the first debate last month, saying he didn’t have to compete with rivals who were so far behind in surveys. For the second debate, he instead spoke to autoworkers in Michigan.

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