There were eight candidates in the first big Republican debate of the 2012 campaign season.
Two of them dominated the stage from the start in a contest over who has created more jobs.
And the winner is….. Mitt Romney, according to his campaign.
“Mitt Romney won tonight’s debate because he demonstrated that he is the only candidate in the race who can return the country to economic prosperity. Career politicians got us into the mess and it will take someone with experience in the real economy to get us out,” the campaign’s communication director Gail Gitcho said in a statement released after Wednesday’s debate at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library in Simi Valley, California.
While the former Massachusetts governor’s campaign claimed victory, Rick Perry was the man in the spotlight.
All eyes were on the Texas governor as he made his debut on the national stage — and when it was over Perry said in a post-debate statement he was pleased to have been able to introduce his “conservative philosophy and pro-jobs record to the American people.”