Originally aired on Monday, September 12th, 2011, the CNN Tea Party Republican debate featured eight candidates vying for the 2012 nomination. Here is the entire video in four parts courtesy of CNN.

Participants: Michele Bachmann, Herman Cain, Newt Gingrich, Jon Huntsman, Ron Paul, Rick Perry, Mitt Romney and Rick Santorum

Note: If a video will not load, try refreshing the page. CNN’s video play sometimes will not load the first time. This is a known issue.

Part 1:

Continue reading for parts 2, 3 and 4.

Part 2:

Part 3:

Part 4:

Report from CNN:

Tampa, Florida (CNN) — With Texas Gov. Rick Perry threatening to cement his standing atop the national polls, his rivals for the Republican presidential nomination aggressively sought to undermine his conservative credentials on Monday during the first-ever CNN/Tea Party Debate in Florida.

Perry repeatedly found himself in the crosshairs, as the field of candidates took turns attacking his positions on illegal immigration, Social Security, and his controversial 2007 push to vaccinate Texas schoolgirls against human papillomavirus, a common sexually transmitted that can lead to cervical cancer.

Minnesota Rep. Michele Bachmann, whose standing among Republicans has slipped dramatically since Perry entered the race, said she was “offended” by Perry’s executive order, which included an opt-out provision for parents who did not want the vaccine.

“To have innocent little 12 year old girls to be forced to have government injections through an executive order is just flat-out wrong,” Bachmann said.

Former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum — like Bachmann, a staunch social conservative struggling to gain traction in the polls — also pounced.

“This is big government run amok,” Santorum said to applause. “It is bad policy and it should not have been done.”

Perry said he regretted his decision to push for the vaccine using an executive order, but said he was standing up against cancer.

Perry and Romney dominated the first 15 minutes of this debate just like last time, however, the knives for Perry came out early and often from many of his lower tier rivals. Specifically Paul, Bachmann and Santorum all went hard after Perry on the issues of taxes, the role of government and anything they perceived as a weakness. The one benefiting the most from the attacks on Perry was, of course, Mitt Romney who walked away largely unscathed. Newt Gingrich also had some memorable lines.


  1. I am getting more religous feelings from Bachman regarding all issues that I don’t like seeing so much. I’m not against religion, I am religous, but I don’t like seeing it so much regarding ALL issues.

  2. Social Security was good in the 1930’s to the 1960’s; it started having problems when the ELITE Congress and Presidents used these separate Entitlement program. It WAS NOT SUPPOSED to be touched by CONGRESS or any PRESIDENt, but in the 1980’s it started getting raided to the point the Treasury holds I.O.Us. Let’s reduce $pending, pay off our debt, pay off social security i.o.u.’s …ensure it CANNOT be touched, robbed or usurped. Congress has the responsibility of the PURSE STRINGS. Stop the fraud and waste in GOV and MIC Corporations. REQUIRE all CORPs to pay their full 35% tax. Audit ALL Gov agencies.
    Buffer Small Businesses with low INTEREST RATE loans and promote NEW HOPE jobs with joint SBB, SCORE, US PATENT OFFICE and teams of engineers, builders, businessmen, auditors, salesman et.al. to come up with Companies/HOPE Bonds that WE THE PEOPLE can invest in. Doctors on Wheels, Green Energy, Transportation devices that use LESS and more efficient, Manufacturing, healthy foods/herbs. Get our co-creation, ingenuity, resourcefulness going on the pathway of enlightenment & truth. Stop the retoric & DO.

  3. As usual, CNN almost totally ignored Ron Paul. They try to silence him and keep him out of the debate. I cannot believe they did not involve him in the Federal Reserve question. If the media is trying to keep someone quiet and is against that person, then I am FOR that person! Vote Ron Paul….America’s only hope for the future!!

    • Agreed,

      I voted for Obama but I have been following Ron Paul. Reading his books and listening to every thing he says. It is sickening that CNN would skip him on one of HIS most strongest issues that, until recently, the rest of the GOP has started to follow.

      Ron Paul is the front runner and I, a voting democrat would be GLAD to vote for Ron Paul over Obama in 2012

      • If someone who voted for President Obama is considering Congressman Paul then I really need to re-think whether or not I want to vote for Paul.

        Feel free to vote if you’ve grown up and you promise to start researching the issues and the candidates BEFORE you vote. Ads, speeches, and biased news are not fact and not research.

        The average man applying for work has to fill out an application listing his qualifications, provide references, submit to a background check, interview, and provide proof of citizenship when hired.

        What were Obama’s qualifications for the highest job in the land?

    • It is funny, because no matter what forum I am on online, the Ron Paul supporters always claim he didn’t get enough air time. He gets equal time as everyone else. I haven’t selected a candidate yet, but if you want to be fair, compare the air time for Cain, Santorum, and Gingrich. They had even less then Ron Paul.

      • Many candidates did not get equal time, but Ron Paul didn’t get the attention he deserved. People obviously want to hear what he has to say, considering his popularity in the polls. Its funny how the media can completely direct the masses and yet so few are acually aware of it.

  4. To: Caren Sinise,
    The founders of the United States of America relied heavily on their faith in their God, the God of the Bible, in all their affairs. They were much more outspoken of their dependence on the Lord Jesus Christ than Bachmann is. Please study the original writtings of those who founded our country.

    “It is impossible to rightly govern a nation without God and the Bible” George Washington, leader (General) of the Revolutionary War, “the father of our nation”, and our first president. How much plainer can it get?

    To: Georgann,
    You are right. Congress has the responsibility of the “purse strings”, not the Federal Reserve.

    • Are you on crack???? Or have you not been properly educated in American history??? People like YOU scare me – because you are making all these ASSUMPTIONS based on what you’ve been told. I really hope you don’t have a parcel of children…

      Our Founding Fathers were DEISTS who didn’t WANT A THEOCRACY. Read your history – England WAS a repressive government run by a monarch who was also the titular head of the Church of England.

      Why don’t you look up the Treaty of Tripoli??? Here is a section OF the treaty – specifically discussing religion in America:

      “As the Government of the United States of America is not, in any sense, founded on the Christian religion,—as it has in itself no character of enmity against the laws, religion, or tranquility, of Mussulmen,—and as the said States never entered into any war or act of hostility against any Mahometan nation, it is declared by the parties that no pretext arising from religious opinions shall ever produce an interruption of the harmony existing between the two countries.”

      AMERICA IS A SECULAR NATION AND THERE IS NO ROOM FOR RELIGION – specifically YOUR obvious brand of Christianity.

  5. Thank you CNN for being more fair to all candidates. I’m tired of watching debates that only focus on the front runners.

  6. As usual Ron Paul is marginalized and excluded from his areas of expertise. Shameful manipulation. It was he who founded the IDEA of the Tea Party but distanced himself from it due to their lack of conviction to critical issues like ending the wars and ELIMINATING the Fed.

    • I love at the end how Ron Paul brought up the fact that he is third up. None of the networks are recognizing this fact. He is the in the running and poeple need to know.

  7. Your claim over Washington’s alleged beliefs are debatable. While no one can say with certainty what he believed, what is not debatable is the fact that he, along with the rest of the founding fathers, were secularists, above all. So even though Washington may have been religious, he firmly believed in the separation of church and state. Even if the quote you presented was true, that was his personal belief and never tried to legislation creed into law. This has never been and never will be a nation legislated by any religion and the founders were strongly opposed to any creed being legislated. You should read the Constitution before you post nonsense.

    • The founding fathers were not ‘secularists’, nor did ‘separation of church and state’ (actually ‘a wall of seperation between church and state’) refer to keeping religion out of politics. Rather, the ‘wall of seperation’ refered to removing government interference from the church (as the government was legislating liberties away from the Danbury Baptist church). Amidst the founding fathers , they founded 205 Bible societies (non-profit entities devoted to publishing/translating/distributing Bibles) – something King George had not allowed. Benjamin Franklin called for the establishment of prayer in congress, the reading of the Bible in schools, and on his comittee including Thomas Jefferson came up with Moses parting the Red Sea for a proposed US Seal. Thomas Jefferson established church services in the US capitol building and called on the marine band to play the worship services, and provided federal funding for missionary work (also the treasury building . And these were two of the least religious founding fathers! Religion was a huge part of public life – not established religion as in England, with a state church and enforced worship, but freedom of worship and practice whether you were a public official or private citizen, and encouragement of general morality. Days of prayer, fasting and humility and thanks to God were often called for, references to God and Jesus frequently made, altar calls even made from court room benches! Benjamin Rush, one of the three most influential men of the revolution and after, involved in early america in aspects of government, education, medecine, etc –

      “He is generally deemed Presbyterian and was a founder of the Philadelphia Bible Society,[25] “father of public schools” and a principal promoter of the American Sunday School Union.[8] He was an advocate for Christianity in public life and in education. In line with that, he advocated that the U.S. government require public schools to teach students using the Bible as a textbook, and that the government should furnish an American bible to every family at public expense. He also said that the following sentence should be inscribed in letters of gold over the door of every State and Court house in the United States: “The Son of Man Came into the World, Not To Destroy Men’s Lives, But To Save Them.” [26][27][28] Since such an action did not involve the establishment by Congress of a religious entity (state approved church or sect), he saw no conflict between this and the First Amendment to the United States Constitution, ratified in 1791, which states: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof;….”[29]” (The excerpt is from wikipedia.)

      While Jefferson did not speak much on religion in public life, not wishing to sway opinion, he believed religon a “supplement to law in the government of men”


      I would suggest for a start reading “Church of the Holy Trinity vs. The United States”

      It is a 19th century court case that includes an overview of the history of the church in the nation from before its founding to the time of the case, specifically religion in politics, freedom of religion, and the influence of Christianity. (This supreme court case has never been overturned, by the way).

      Washington, by the way, mentioned his belief in Jesus in several letters. He attended church, and took communion with protestants on at least three occasions. The only reason his faith is ‘suspect’ is because he refused communion at his own church, leading to his own church leader and political opponents to question and smear his faith. His family avowed him as a staunch christian.

      It is also important to note that promoting the Bible or God in general did NOT constitute ‘establishment of religion’. Also, the states initially did have the power to establish religion if they chose to a limited degree. ‘Establishment of religion’ referred to promoting one denomination/sect over another, ie a physical church ‘establishment’ – not encouraging morality or speaking of God. There were also protections against punishing people who did not follow specifics of a given establishment. The clause ‘or prohibit the free excercise therof’ was equally important. While the first prevented the government from giving power to the anglicans vs unitarians or presbyterians, etc, the second allowed anyone to worship God after their own concience.

      In England, only the State sanctioned church was allowed (the ‘establishment of religion’), and people were not allowed to worship freely. For instance, protestants who refused to revel on May Day or other church holidays, or who believed differently from the church on certain points, could be harassed, excommunicated, or lose social rights.

      That ‘God’ (specifically the God of the Bible, responsible for Old Testament mircales) was the Providential hand over america was never questioned or seen as establishment of religion, not by Jefferson or any other founder (except perhaps Paine). Founding fathers varied on how outspoken they were or how much they liked to discuss religion from the very outspoken to the very restrained, but all agreed that religious liberty allowed the expression of belief. Some had the thought that a politician should be careful that their expression only encourage the populace and not seem intimidating/demanding.

  8. Wow! Unbelievable how CNN says Michelle Bachman “Aced an early test in Iowa”. Aced what? How to pay for votes? She bought 4000 seats by telling “supporters” that they don’t get to go to the “free” Randy Travis concert unless they vote for her. She really is learning how to conduct herself in DC…just like the rest…through deception. Then, they categorize Ron Paul under the “Rest of the field”. What a joke!! Of course CNN will ignore Ron Paul. A candidate who is a threat to the status quo will always be ignored by the mainstream presstitutes. The only way for Ron Paul to win is for the majority of Americans to wake the hell up. Rick Perry is Barack Obama is Newt Gingrich is Mitt Romney is Michelle Bachman. They all work for the same oligarchy. Until the banksters are stopped from raping and pillaging and brought to justice for running the largest ponzi scheme in the history of mankind and saddling the taxpayers with their fraudulently created debt, no one is safe and nothing with change…other than losing ALL your freedoms and rights. Wake up before it’s too late.

  9. Wow, was this a Klan rally? I saw three black people (including Cain) in this debate. (just kidding tea party members). However, there is a legitimate reason why minorities can’t relate to an all white astro turf movement that can’t discern between reality and the lies being told by these politicians. I would agree with much of what Ron Paul says but until he realizes that common sense sometimes trump principles then he will never get elected. Trying to defend the notion that a person who needs an operation and doesn’t have insurance must find a church or some charity that will pay for it is not only un-American, but unethical and inhumane. What if they don’t find a church? What if they are too poor to find a church. Common sense and compassion is what I though America stood for.

    • 1st, how can you be “too poor” to find a church? Second, common sense and compassion IS what America stands for and it most certainly is what Ron Paul stands for! Who is more caring and compassionate towards communities and its’ citizens than a church? You weren’t understanding what he was trying to say. Yes, that would be inhumane with our current health structure, but Ron Paul wants to abolish the current system and go back to how medicine was practiced in older times, when Big Pharma wasn’t ruling. He is old enough where he has seen this himself and has seen it work. Ron Paul is a doctor of medicine himself. On that basis alone, I would trust him to know more about what’s best for our healthcare concerns than any of the other current candidates. I encourage you to familiarize yourself more for what he actually does stand for on healthcare, here: http://www.ronpaul.com/on-the-issues/health-care/
      We don’t want anyone thinking untruths. If you don’t want to be for Ron Paul, that’s fine, but it can’t be because of a reason that he doesn’t stand for either!

    • The primary gist of his argument, which he would have gotten to if he had not been boo’d, is that it is not the business of the federal gov’t to provide health care. If you as a citizen want health care provided for you by the gov’t it should be done at the state level. If your state will not enact that policy then you could simply move to a state that does. California is a state that would likely do so.

  10. Ron Paul bluntly spoke the truth about 9/11 on the biggest national platform I’ve ever seen it presented, and got booed. Noam Chomsky has supported this stance with fact upon fact and source upon source countless times. Santorum, where is your information coming from?

  11. Thanks CNN for making this a Rommy/Perry debate! I was bored hearing the same old thing. The only times i felt like a true leader was speaking was when Ron Paul spoke.

    I never really considered Ron Paul for president until this year. So far i am impressed with him and how you can easily tell that he is above the smoke and mirrors that the rest use.

  12. First off, I’m really disappointed at how the media treats Dr. Paul, but from every single internet post I have seen about the recent debates, most of the comments are supportive of Ron Paul and I makes me happy to know that he has a massive fan base, despite how the media treatment of him would have you think. Ron Paul is the only one, other than maybe Cain, that is trying to fix the actual problems in our nation, rather than fixing the symptoms. We can’t be angry for immigrants coming here, look at from there point of view. The drug war in Mexico is way out of control, people are dying almost everyday from it, and our immigration system is broken, these people can’t afford to wait around for months and months to be let in, their families are in jeopardy. Those that find an escort to bring them here illegally are lucky if they make it, those escorts are criminals taking away these peoples life savings, giving them nothing to eat, sometimes raping and killing some, and these immigrants risk all this just to live and have opportunity here. I say we need to make our immigration system easier, help fix the drug problem in Mexico so people don’t have to fear for their lives, and if we find illegals here, we should give them the chance to go through the immigration process and become citizens. We need to fix the problems close to home and stop wasting our time all over the world. And yeah, thanks to our former leaders policing the world, someone finally retaliated and attacked us, BIG SURPRISE. “They want to kill us because we’re free” what a load of horse shit, they want to kill us because we have been killing them for years. Ron Paul is the only person I have seen that has the experience and the systematically consistent ideals to fix this country. It’s due time that Americans wake up and stop this beauty contest that is the presidential debates, at the beginning of this I thought I was watching a wrestling match, all that was missing was a commentator speaking over what was happening. This needs to be taken more seriously, and Paul has the support, other wise he wouldn’t have been able to raise six million dollars in donations in a day in his last campaign. He has a fighting chance if more people open there eyes, Its about time we get back to being America.

  13. This idea that we were and are continued to be attacked by terrorists and/or extreme religious fanatics because they hate our liberty, religious freedoms, and what we stand for as a republic, is great language for 6 year old’s. Seriously, Ron Paul is just trying to articulate what we know is right, but are afraid to admit; that our government’s foreign policy is often responsible for the blow-back it creates. Ron Paul for president!

  14. Does the host need to continue to re-hash issues that were covered in past debates? I already know about that 12 year old girl vaccination mandate. I already heard them talk about Romney’s health care model. Etc etc, let’s spend time on new issues!

  15. Every time the debate happens since the last election Ron Paul gets ignored on the main issues and he gets only stupid and not-so-important questions instead. This is extremely unfair and lack of attention is artificially created by media. This is as much unacceptable as the whole Barack Hussein’s activity in the White House.

  16. cain, newt, and paul are the only real ones up there the rest are part of the elite. if perry or rommeny gets in just the same crap we just going to get another bush in. no real people ever get elected because the american people are sheeple and dont get it. they vote for whoever has the best silver tongue.

  17. CNN this debate was horrible! Wolf cut off Ron Paul multiple times when I wanted to hear what he had to say but let other candidates go on and on and on who were really saying NOTHING but candy coated, rehearsed views we have heard over an over. Perry was even allowed to repeat himself over and over and was never rushed. Its so shameful that Ron Paul is not be credited as being the force behind why all the candidates are talking about the Constitution, the Bill of Rights, sound money. Ron Paul has a record no one else can even match, and he is held back and put down by the media. CNN your cowards!!!!!!!!! BOOOOO! Shame on Wolf for rushing him everytime he spoke and he was actually saying something!!!!! While Mitt, and Perry wasted air time and viewers time with their pony show. Shame on you CNN!

  18. I’m so sick of this unfairness against Ron Paul!!! Bachman BOUGHT first place in the straw poll and Ron Paul legitimately WON 2nd place yet they don’t call him a “front runner”. They make it out to be all about Romney and Perry and they try to clump Ron Paul in with the rest of the candidates to pretend like he is not a legitimate choice. Then on issues that Ron Paul really shines, such as the Federal Reserve, the let everyone talk EXCEPT Ron Paul and totally skip him. Immigration and border control…again they totalled skipped him. Then finally they let him talk about 9/11 and strategically put him up against the ultra radical conservative Santorum who stands there and rolls his eyes at him and trys to make Paul out to be some kind of crazy person.

    The reality is that Ron Paul is actually speaking the truth. The American people are tired of hearing the pretty lies and the politics and we need someone who will speak the truth to us and be honest. He was right about their being a difference between defense spending and militarism. He was right about 900 off shore bases. He is right when he asks how we would feel if China wanted to build a bunch of military bases in the USA like we do to other countries, we’d be pissed off too! He is right in saying that Al Quida is attacking us because we are in their land. We are trying to be a modern day Roman Empire and that’s not what we should be doing. He is right that if we just got the hell out of all these other countries and minded our own business that maybe they wouldn’t have any reason any longer to attack us. They are attacking us because we invade their countries and build bases on their holy grounds. We would hate if they did that to us so how vain can we be? Yet our people BOO him for telling the friggin truth? Are you kidding me?

    STOP pretending that Ron Paul isn’t a viable candidate. STOP treating him differently. STOP playing games and lying to the American people.

  19. I voted for Obama, even in the democratic caucus, because I wanted change. I didn’t get any change. It got worse.

    If it comes down to Obama vs Paul, I will vote for Ron Paul because I believe he will actually make the changes that I wanted Obama to do. Obama said he would end the war, but he didn’t, and I believe that Ron Paul will.

    If it comes down to Obama vs Romney or Huntsman, I will vote for Obama. I will never, ever, put a member of the mormon cult in office. Many people wont come right out and admit it but I believe that their are millions of Christians who would agree with me on that one and the issue has been ignored so far in the debates. The fact of the matter is that having a Mormon republican candidate against Obama will result in many Christian republicans voting for Obama based on religion alone for fear of giving the Mormans even more power. If you research the things that religion does, it’s scary stuff and to ignore that a Morman nominee would be more difficult to defeat Obama would be to ignore a big issue. It’s the truth and it should be considered.

  20. I agree with everything that Al said above. The terrorists aren’t against Americans because “they hate our freedoms.” I used to get a good laugh when Bush would constantly repeat that garbage. I would like to see Ron Paul as president & Jon Huntsman as his vice-president. That’s who I think could beat Obama. As everyone mentioned, CNN had Perry & Romney do most of the talking. It’s because they got to constantly go back and forth after each made a comment about one another (their books, job percentage growth, etc. etc.). ANNOYING. If some of the others tried to do this, they were cut off. Rick Santorum is a joke. He was senator in my state and was tossed out and replaced with Bob Casey. This was the largest margin of defeat for an incumbent Senator since 1980 if that tells you anything. Go read about Santorum’s Pennsylvania residency and tuition fee. He’s just your typical politician who is all for himself.

  21. UGH! The chick that sang the National Anthem was like fingernails on a chalkboard! She sounded like a man in drag.

  22. I am not amazed at the fact that CNN would run an exclusionary debate. They deliberately picked who would answer what question and gave the lions share of question to their choices. How do you have a debate when you do not allow all candidates to address a question. These idiots went at least 4 questions and did not allow Ron Paul to respond. He was the 1st of ALL of these candidates to discuss ending the Fed and to speak out against the mandatory vaccines in Texas, and was not allowed to address either of these issues. I didn’t see any need to watch this debate any further when the moderator following the commands of the network, followed this biased mode of operation.

  23. Must say that all these candidates are perhaps the most competitive runners I’ve yet to see. I voted for Obama, I notice many people but I am holding on for the President I voted for. But, if I had a choice from these candidates, I would elect without delay RON PAUL! He speaks the truth and is a hardball player, he say’s what America needs to hear and he is open minded which is a Leader this country needs. This is if Obama is elected out, but I’m curious as to why the Candidates do not present their plans to the White House for our Betterment?? You can sense the Division I take it. They are all against Obama, yet, they never mentioned that they have proposed their relief plans to the President. Now, isn’t that a little weird. If there plans will work, why are they waiting to be elected President to then enact them if they can do something now and maybe even get credit for, why can’t they just get along. Why? I know why, do you? I’m afraid of the Typical American voter because as History shows us, they don’t know how to vote, they vote on the vague guidelines and no Intellect. How will you vote??

  24. I still find the most annoying thing is question ducking. Almost every candidate ducks the illegal immigrants issue by talking about border control, and securing the border. None of them will mention what they would do after that, or concurrently. It would be nice to get rid of Government subsidies on housing, food, healthcare for illegals.

  25. All of these candidates have brought somehing to the table. Even nutty Ron Paul. I would love to see the future president (hopefully) build his cabinet using some of this talent. This would also enhance the resume of these future Republican presidential hopefuls. The office of Vice-President should not be wasted on a “Dan Quale”, or Secretary of State appointed to a political light-weight like Hillary Clinton. As for questions to ask the hopefuls, how about this one…….”On your last day in office, would you sell pardons to finance your future presidential library, like former president Bill Clinton did?”

  26. Why is it that everytime they talk about balancing the budget they talk about how it will making more jobs? This kills me. Bill Gates did not build Microsoft so people would have jobs. He did it to make money. Giving people jobs is a bi-product of his goals. I’m not saying our govt doesn’t over spend. I’m just saying if you make it easy for business to do business here they will come. That will make jobs! Its that easy…….really!

  27. Ron Paul speaks the truth whether others want to believe it or admit it and for that he is considered radical and extreme. In my opinion he is brave and honest. We need someone like that in office, someone who don’t back down if they are right no matter what others think, and someone who has the balls to enforce the laws no matter what. I thought I was going to like Perry until I heard some of his answers, you can really tell he used to be a DemoRAT.

  28. Notch Social Security recipients receive less benefits for money earned. Born between 1920-25 this is a terrible discrimination against US citizens is this a relative of the Ponci scheme? These unfortunate recipients receive less benefits for money earned.

    Will this ever be corrected??

  29. I can’t believe that people boo’d Ron Paul when he said ‘they hate us for our freedom is a total untruth’. The only issue I disagree with Ron Paul on is federally mandated education, specifically federally mandated history lessons.

  30. Part 1 is no longer working properly. I did not try the others. I watched the full version on YouTube. They have video from the first audience question on.

    • I check them all and they still work. CNN’s video player is not the greatest. Sometimes need to refresh the page to make it load the video.

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