For once, it wasn’t the Donald Trump show.
The billionaire businessman’s uneven performance at CNN’s prime-time Republican presidential debate Wednesday gave Carly Fiorina and Jeb Bush openings to seize the spotlight. And they did, putting Trump in the unusual position of being on defense throughout the evening.
Fiorina, who fought her way onto the main stage with a breakout debate performance last month, pointedly confronted the real estate mogul. She was stern when asked about Trump’s recent assessment of her appearance, when he told Rolling Stone: “Look at that face! Would anyone vote for that?”
Fiorina shot back during the debate: “I think women all over this country heard very clearly what Mr. Trump said.”
The exchange left Trump in an unusual position: uninterested in hitting back.
“I think she’s got a beautiful face and I think she’s a beautiful woman,” he said.
Minutes later, Trump once again let a moment of potential confrontation slip by – this time in an exchange with Bush.