The debate hosted by Fox News had a shakeup in the line-up as Republican front-runner, Donald Trump opted to skip the debate.
Trump’s bold decision landed Ted Cruz at the center podium in the Hawkeye State.
"I want to thank everyone here for showing the men and women of Iowa the respect to show up and make the case to the people of this state," Cruz said, to open the night.
Here are the best lines of the debate:
ON DONALD TRUMP SKIPPING THE DEBATE
TED CRUZ: "Let me say I'm a maniac and everyone on this stage is stupid, fat, and ugly. And Ben [Carson], you're a terrible surgeon. Now that we've gotten the Donald Trump portion out of the way."
"It's not about Donald Trump," Marco Rubio added. "Barack Obama wants America to be more like the rest of the world. We don't want to be like the rest of the world. We want to be the United States of America."
Trump announced Tuesday he would be skipping the Fox News Debate, and instead is hosting a special event for veterans in the Hawkeye State.
ON THE MEDIA
“I would note that the last four questions have been Rand [Paul], please attack Ted [Cruz], Jeb [Bush], please attack Ted,” Cruz said to the Fox News moderator. “If you guys ask one more mean question, I may have to leave the stage.”
Marco Rubio fired back, “First of all, don't worry, I'm not leaving the stage no matter what you ask me.”
ON RACIAL PROFILING
“Everybody is welcome from any race, any country, any religion, if they want to be Americans. If they want to accept our values and our laws. If not, they can stay where they are,” Ben Carson said in response to some GOP messaging on Muslims.
Back in December, Republican front-runner Donald Trump called for a 'total and complete shutdown' of Muslims entering the US.
ON BALANCING THE BUDGET
CHRIS CHRISTIE: "Get rid of Planned Parenthood funding from the United States of America. When you see thousands upon thousands upon thousands of American being murdered in the womb, I can't think of anything better than that."
MARCO RUBIO: "ISIS is the most dangerous group in the history of man kind. ISIS burns people alive in cages, that sells off little girls as brides. ISIS wants to trigger an apocalyptic showdown in Syria. They want to trigger an armageddon showdown. They need to be defeated."
MARCO RUBIO: “We are not going to round up and deport 12 million people but we're not going to hand out citizenship cards, either.”
TED CRUZ: “When he [Marco Rubio] ran for election in the state of Florida, he told the people of Florida if you elect me, I will lead the fight against amnesty. When I ran in Texas, I told the people of Texas if you elect me, I will lead the fight against amnesty. We both made the identical promises. But when we came to Washington, we made a different choice.”
“I honored my commitments,” Cruz added.
“And this is why you need to send someone from outside of Washington to Washington. I feel like I need a Washington English dictionary converter, right?” New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie said about Marco Rubio and Ted Cruz's position on immigration.
JEB BUSH: “We should be a welcoming nation. Our identity is not based on race or ethnicity. It's based on a set of shared values. That's American citizenship.”
ON FOREIGN POLICY
BEN CARSON: “Putin is a one-horse country; oil and energy.”
ON BILL CLINTON
“I don't blame Hillary Clinton at all for this. I don't think she's responsible for his [Bill Clinton] behavior. If what bill Clinton did, any CEO in our country did, with an intern, with a 22-year-old, 21-year-old intern in their office, they would be fired,” Rand Paul said when asked if Bill Clinton's sexual indiscretion during his presidency, should be held against Democratic front-runner Hillary Clinton.