Every one of the candidates opposed the bailouts. And every one was fervently against abortion rights. Romney, who was the governor of Massachusetts, has come under some fire from social conservatives, but when the moderator opened the stage to ask if any candidate's commitment to being "pro-life" was questioned, no one jumped in.
There was broad but not uniform support for a constitutional amendment banning gay marriage. Paul and Santorum were alone in saying they would allow a repeal of the military's expiring 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell' policy to go forward.
There was broad agreement that entitlements like Medicare and Social Security should be reformed quickly. Pawlenty said he would soon offer a plan to make Medicare optional for seniors. Herman Cain, pressed by a questioner, said Medicare and Social Security have to be changed.
"I hate to be the one to give you the bad news, doctor," he said. "You're not going to get most of the money you put into Medicare if we don't restructure it. The reason we're in the situation we are today with Medicare and Social Security is because the problem hasn't been solved."