GOP South Carolina CNN Debate Open Marriage Thread, Post-Rick Perry Edition!


Well, this one won't be lacking in entertainment value, will it?

Newt surges! Marianne dishes! Perry '86es! Santorum wins Iowa after all, maybe! Ron Paul…has a hot air balloon taken down. And those are just the headlines from today.

CNN's Wolf Blitzer, as usual, is ready to ask the hard questions (and upload them to YouTube). Such as:

The four remaining candidates have been beating up on each other in recent days. Will they have the guts to blast their opponents when they are standing right next to them?

No due respect to Wolf, there are some other interesting brain-ticklers, such as:

* Will John King's inevitable so-long Marianne question be a win, a win-win, or a positively Friedmanesque win-win-win for Newt Gingrich in the near-term of the South Carolina primary?

* Will Ron Paul continue to attack only his non-Romney competitors, will he finally direct fire toward the decidedly non-libertarian Mitt in the hope that a Gingrich comeback victory in the S.C. punctures the whole electability bubble, or will he just spend the debate hopping up and down on Rick Santorum's fingers?

* Will Paul be challenged for not hi-fiving the Osama bin Laden assassination, not understanding the grave threat of a nuclearized Iran, not knowing who wrote his retarded old newsletters, or all of the above? In every case, DRINK!

* Will we really waste time bashing a private equity firm for not being a full-employment factory?

* Will there be any mention of the following non-trivial subjects: The Euro-zone fiscal crisis, the America-zone fiscal crisis, the drug war-fueled civil war in Mexico, the drug war-fueled drug war in America?

* What will be averaged elapsed time between "Hey Mitt, how come you totally 180'd on this particular position?" and him totally changing the subject–10 seconds, five, or three?

I would ask more, but we're up against the clock here, and y'all need some time to work out the rules of the drinking game.

Your Final Four:

Mitt Romney: Profile, Reason coverage page

Newt Gingrich: Profile, coverage

Ron Paul: Profile, coverage

Rick Santorum: Profile, coverage

No live-blogging here currently planned; we may catch up later.