Ten candidates took center stage at the circus-like event in Cleveland that was the Republicans’ first presidential debate on Thursday night, but for followers on Twitter, The Guardian reported, the real winner of the evening was not a candidate: It was Fox News debate moderator Megyn Kelly.
Kelly began by grilling Donald Trump, asking him to defend having called women he doesn’t like “fat pigs.” Trump interrupted, joking: “Only Rosie O’Donnell,” but Kelly persisted. “It was way beyond Rosie O’Donnell,” she said, rolling her eyes. “Your Twitter account has several disparaging comments about women’s looks. You once told a contestant on The Celebrity Apprentice it would be a pretty picture to see her on her knees,” she reminded him and asked if he was part of the war on women. Trump’s views on women have been a hot topic.
Trump responded saying America has a problem with political correctness, and said, “I don’t frankly have time for total political correctness.” But Kelly had struck a nerve. “I’ve been very nice to you,” Trump told Kelly, “although I could probably maybe not be.”
Kelly pressed the other candidates as well. She drew out an embarrassing monologue from Jeb Bush about his defunding of Planned Parenthood in Florida, asked Scott Walker whether he would “let a mother die rather than have an abortion,” and presented Senator Marco Rubio a conundrum by asking whether he would allow exceptions in abortion cases where women were victims of rape or incest.
At the moderator desk, Megyn Kelly stole the show.
Kelly was featured as one of our 2015 Women of Impact.