Repub­li­can debate: The win­ners and losers from the sec­ond exchange

The sec­ond 2024 Repub­li­can pri­ma­ry debate pro­vid­ed polit­i­cal fire­works as can­di­dates not named Don­ald Trump sought the mon­ey and sup­port they need to sus­tain their cam­paigns through the fall and win­ter.
Under­neath the harsh lights and decom­mis­sioned Air Force One in the Ronald Rea­gan Pres­i­den­tial Library and Muse­um in Simi Val­ley, Cal­i­for­nia, the eight par­tic­i­pat­ing can­di­dates — Gov. Ron DeSan­tis (R‑FL), for­mer U.N. Ambas­sador and South Car­oli­na Gov. Nik­ki Haley, biotech­nol­o­gy entre­pre­neur Vivek Ramaswamy, for­mer Vice Pres­i­dent Mike Pence, Sen. Tim Scott (R‑SC), for­mer New Jer­sey Gov. Chris Christie, and Gov. Doug Bur­gum (R‑ND) — com­pet­ed for air­time to make their case why they should be the par­ty’s alter­na­tive to Trump.
Here are the Wash­ing­ton Exam­in­er’s win­ners and losers:
Ron DeSan­tis
DeSan­tis took his place behind the podi­um for the sec­ond debate fac­ing the great­est expec­ta­tions — and pres­sure. The Flori­da gov­er­nor, who ear­li­er in the evening cel­e­brat­ed his 14th wed­ding anniver­sary, was large­ly ignored dur­ing his first out­ing, his cam­paign con­tend­ing that was him stay­ing above the fray. But he insert­ed him­self more into the dis­cus­sion Wednes­day, try­ing to strike a bal­ance between assertive­ness and like­abil­i­ty, a dynam­ic that has caused him issues through­out his bid.
DeSan­tis was a …