Former Hewlett-Packard CEO Carly Fiorina dominated the first GOP debate, which aired early in the evening on Thursday before the main event.
The 5 p.m. "Happy Hour" debate on Fox News showed Fiorina displaying a strong knowledge of the prominent issues facing candidates in the GOP field for the 2016 presidential race. The CEO even spoke to some of her clout as a political insider — an advantage made stronger by her position outside of Washington.
“On Day One in the Oval Office, I would make two phone calls,” she said. “The first one would be to my good friend, Bibi Netanyahu, to reassure him we will stand with the State of Israel.
“The second will be to the supreme leader of Iran. He might not take my phone call, but he would get the message, and the message is this: Until you open every nuclear and every military facility to full, open, anytime, anywhere, for real inspections, we are going to make it as difficult as possible for you to move money around the global financial system.”
Fiorina didn’t hesitate to take a jab at fellow GOP hopeful, the controversial Donald Trump.
“I didn’t get a phone call from Bill Clinton before I jumped in the race,” she said, looking to her fellow candidates on stage with her. “Did any of you guys get a phone call from Bill Clinton? I didn’t. Maybe it’s because I didn’t give money to the [Clinton] Foundation or donate money to his wife’s Senate campaign.”
Though she acknowledged that Trump has tapped into the anger of conservatives in America since beginning his campaign, Fiorina questioned the billionaire businessman’s ability as a world leader.
“I would just ask, what are the principles by which he will govern?" she said.
Fiorina, who is currently sitting between 1 and 2 percent in the national polls, used the unique story of her rise to success as a way to connect with potential voters.
“I started as a secretary and became ultimately the chief executive of the largest technology company in the world, almost $90 billion in over 150 countries,” she said. “I know personally how extraordinary and unique this nation is."
Photo credit: onpolitics.usatoday.com, Fox News Screenshot