GOP Debate: On the Attack

GOP presidential candidates debate on the economy in Las Vegas.
4:10 | 10/18/11

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Transcript for GOP Debate: On the Attack
That was Vega is baiting for the Republicans tonight in Las Vegas for the fifth Republican debate since Labor Day and they went at it focusing on the economy. And -- each other the attack skewed personal at times the state -- more than one yelling match so here's a quick look. At the debate. On -- What are your -- hit it was a slugfest tonight in big exchanged the drafts you had your chance let me speak you -- -- -- -- In a combative and rambunctious Republican debate there -- -- truly revealing moments revealing more of the personal and the political dynamic in this race. Take a look at how governor Rick Perry of Texas launches an attack on Mitt Romney and -- the body language here. And the idea that -- stand here before us and talk about that your strong on immigration is on its face the hot. Of hypocrisy Romney's response. He laps in his face then denies the charge and this is crucial as He reaches out and Harry on the shoulder that to me almost seemed ready to you want you -- -- -- -- -- -- -- and I visited Chicago. Yeah -- Harry's face was just a portrait of frustration and rage Y -- Well just a few weeks ago He was supposed to be the giant killer of the GOP that conservative Pope who would take down front runner rounding. But poor performances in previous debates and the rise of Herman Cain and carries fading in the polls. Romney a little cooler a little -- a little more confident. -- the ninth to finish very often sixty. But let's just follow the rules that a tough couple debates correct -- and I understand that is so you get. Rick Perry Mitt Romney gone -- ABC's Matt -- joining me now. At that this debate tonight and that moment as -- -- -- earlier we -- not just what they were thinking we got us into their guts to. Yet it's the second wild west showdown over in Vegas and I think -- -- they got out of their heads and into their guts and I think -- learned. About three different candidates in the course of that exchange really we learned that Rick Perry finally decided to show up -- a debate. And really become forceful in a way that was personal. But He made a direct attack and Mitt Romney the second thing we learned about Mitt Romney because this went straight to his -- really wasn't about. Illegal alien and He might have hires one company might have hired it was about its -- can we trust this guy and He basically in that basically told him He was a hypocrite. And third Herman came out of the fire on that -- about a fire and I think -- game because that fire was going on between two other guys that are close to in the polls. Gained out of this -- so I think we really learned about those three in the course of that exchange. If it -- me handles that did that this was Perry go on -- with his best -- you are hypocrite or liar basically told them. Around the handle I think Romney's handled all the debates well I think this is the first time that He was really confronted -- very personal emotional way normally Romney can handle sort of intellectual logical conversation He had handled very personal emotional -- I think He handled that well I don't think He loses support in this debate but I don't think He gains any investment Mitt Romney's problem from beginning He has it. It seems settled -- this argument over and go straight to what Rick Perry pointed out must and I trust you. And that's what the Republican base has had a problem with Mitt Romney for -- they've fallen in love them. Do you think -- Herman Cain is really. Is really the guy for them well they seem to still be dating around may have had a short term relationships I think -- a series of monogamy short term relationships is when it seems like. I don't think -- very area I think -- if you put the ads on Mitt Romney has the -- in favor but I think the rest of the field still has a chance I think Newt Gingrich may be annexed back. To rise and I think if it. Herman -- stumbles. Newt Gingrich who did very well this debate. Performed very well have some very good answers and -- very well all the -- maybe the next guy. The candidates to date -- for the voters to date in this process and the Obama White House watching this and feeling good about other. Well I think the Obama White House feels good -- -- today it's in disarray but I also think they know that they want to being identified as a weakness on Obama's part which is people don't have a sense of his court. And his energy and that's what's missing. That's what we saw tonight this format that thanks very much.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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