Republican presidential candidates Marco Rubio and Ted Cruz go into attack mode toward their rival, Donald Trump, the day after a lively GOP debate. Rough Cut (no reporter narration).
ROUGH CUT (NO REPORTER NARRATION) Emboldened by a strong debate performance, U.S. Republican presidential candidate Marco Rubio went after front-runner Donald Trump again on Friday (February 26) undeterred by opinion polls predicting the billionaire would win big in the crucial Super Tuesday nominating contests next week. With Trump, age 69, increasingly looking to be the party's likely nominee for the Nov. 8 election, Rubio on Thursday night scored his most aggressive debate performance of the months-long election campaign. Both Rubio and Trump accused each other of excess sweating during the debate, with Rubio saying "he had one of those sweat mustaches." Referring to Rubio, Trump said "He was putting makeup on like a trowel... Did you ever see a guy sweat like this?" During a rally in Forth Worth, Texas, Trump brought up Rubio's 2013 rebuttal to President Obama's State of the Union speech where Rubio grabbed a bottle of water on television. "Do you remember that catastrophe?" asked Trump, before waving a bottle and spilling water on stage to elaborate his point. Trump called Rubio a choker and Ted Cruz a liar. Whereas in Nashville, Tennessee, Cruz pointed fingers at Trump saying, "Donald Trump, like Hillary Clinton, is a rich New York liberal. Republicans in Washington are coming to grips with what many of them not long ago considered an unimaginable reality: Donald Trump is likely to be their presidential nominee and standard-bearer. The prospect of Trump winning the Republican primary had been the stuff of Washington jokes, whispered hallway conversations and eye-rolls, even as he led in public opinion polls for months and dominated debate after debate. But with the brash billionaire now winning three straight contests in New Hampshire, South Carolina, and Nevada, denial is giving way to a mostly gloomy acceptance that he may have too much momentum to be stopped, especially if wins big in key Southern primaries next week that look favorable to him.