Who won the second Gop debate? Did Anyone Clearly Triumph


While the political world buzzes with opinionated energy after each debate, determining who came out on top can be a subjective task. Especially with the second GOP debate, held on September 27, 2023, at Ronald Reagan’s presidential library in Simi Valley, California. The event was notably chaotic, receiving a fair share of criticism. So, if you’re scratching your head wondering, “who won the second GOP debate?” you’re certainly not alone.

  1. Summary of who won the second GOP debate
  2. Winners and Losers
  3. The Moderators’ Role
  4. Fox News’ Struggles
  5. The Clear Winner
  6. Conclusion

As reported by Vox, many felt that the debate lacked the energy and confrontational moments many expected. Yet, ABC News took a careful stance, preferring not to jump into immediate speculations about winners and losers.

Summary of who won the second GOP debate

Aspect Details
Date and Location September 27, 2023, Ronald Reagan’s presidential library, Simi Valley, California
Notable Moments DeSantis attacking Trump’s absence, Christie’s “Donald Duck” mockery, Haley’s confrontations
Moderators’ Role Faced challenges due to multiple candidates, questions on their control and choice of queries
Fox News Reduction in ad slot prices, shifting stance on Trump and DeSantis, Trump’s absence impact
Clear Winner Controversial; Trump’s absence notable, no clear standout challenging his position

Winners and Losers

Ron DeSantis made headlines with his direct attack on Donald Trump’s glaring absence from the event. His strategy is understandable given his polling position and ambition to ascend within the GOP ranks. This move to confront Trump, the poll leader, surely had pundits speculating.

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Chris Christie’s attempt to label Trump as “Donald Duck” was a bold move. However, the effectiveness remains debated as the chaotic nature of the debate may have overshadowed such moments. Reactions from the audience to his comment varied, indicating its uncertain impact.

Nikki Haley’s performance stood out due to her spirited engagements and confrontations with her rivals. Given her increasing appeal among Republican donors, her assertive nature might work in her favor.

Tim Scott took a noticeable shift from his non-negative strategy in previous debates. His passionate moments during this debate were distinctly memorable, showcasing his commitment to stand out.

The Moderators’ Role

Hosting a debate with multiple fierce candidates is no easy task. The moderators faced their share of critiques, especially about their control over the entire event and the questions posed. What added fuel to the fire was the apparent lack of focus on Donald Trump, the undoubted poll leader.

Fox News’ Struggles

Fox News had its own set of challenges surrounding the debate. Notably, the reduction in ad slot prices indicated potential viewership issues. Their shifting stance on Trump and DeSantis also added to the network’s narrative. Trump’s absence unquestionably impacted their viewership and, by extension, their credibility.

The Clear Winner

With Donald Trump’s absence, the debate’s dynamics shifted. However, it’s hard to argue that the debate dramatically changed Trump’s lead in the polls. The field still lacks a clear standout candidate to challenge Trump’s undeniable prominence in the race.


The second GOP debate left more questions than answers. The performances varied, the moderators’ roles were critiqued, and media giants like Fox News faced their own dilemmas. While it’s tempting to answer the burning question, “who won the second GOP debate?”, the response remains complex. As the 2024 presidential race continues to evolve, staying updated becomes ever crucial.

1. When and where was the second GOP debate held?
September 27, 2023, at Ronald Reagan’s presidential library in Simi Valley, California.

2. Who made a notable comment about Trump’s absence?
Ron DeSantis directly attacked Donald Trump’s absence during the debate.

3. How did Fox News perform during the debate?
They faced challenges, notably a reduction in ad slot prices and the impact of Trump’s absence on their viewership.

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— by Rupesh Chauhan