POLL: Who ‘Won’ the Republican Town Hall?

Jeb Bush town hall, Donald Trump town hall, John Kasich town hall

Jeb Bush, here at a campaign town hall, participated in CNN’s event tonight. (Getty)

With the polling race in South Carolina coming to an end soon, the GOP candidates will lay out their proposals for South Carolinians one more time in a CNN. Anderson Cooper moderated the event over two days, with John Kasich, Jeb Bush and Donald Trump appearing tonight. The candidates gave impassioned personal testimonies and laid out their plans for transforming the economy and handling national security and domestic issues.

Read our recap below, then vote for your favorite in the poll at the bottom of the page.


National Security/Foreign Policy

Bush advocated arming the Kurds and creating “safe zones” within Syria.

Trump refused to back down from his criticism of the Iraq War:

The Race

Kasich committed to his campaign regardless of the result in South Carolina.

Trump replied to Cruz’s criticism of his sending a cease-and-desist letter:

Health Care

In response to a pro-ACA audience member, John Kasich touted his record with Ohio’s Medicaid program, singling out its simplification of billing:

Supreme Court

Kasich stated that his litmus test would be a commitment to “interpreting” rather than “making” the law:

Bush said that, if he were the current President, he would appoint a justice:

Gun Rights

John Kasich reiterated his support for the Second Amendment:

Bush explained his earlier tweet of his gun:

Criminal Justice

Bush opposed drug legalization, but advocated lighter sentences for drug users and the treatment of drug addiction as a mental health issue:


Kasich, a Catholic, called himself “pro-Pope” and detailed how his faith deepened after losing his parents at a young age:

In a lighter moment, he talked about his surprisingly youthful musical interests:

Jeb Bush talked about his Catholicism but chose not to touch the Pope’s comments, popularly taken as a jab at Trump:

Trump noted the “very large” wall at the Vatican, referencing the Pope’s comment about building walls versus bridges between people:

He clarified, however, that he has “a lot of respect” for the Pope, and believed he was given “false information:”

Bush also praised his famously political family:

Trump cited as his greatest vice that he had trouble “letting go:”

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