Presidential Contenders Go Head to Head in Republican Primary Debate

Will traditional values trump economic woes?

The candidates are arriving and the stage has been set for Monday night’s Republican Presidential primary debate at Saint Anselm College in Manchester, N.H.

It will be the first televised debate among the prime contenders for the Republican nomination for the 2012 presidential elections.

Political analysts say the candidate who can turn the economy around will be the candidate who wins the election, but family advocates are calling on Republican leaders to return America to a true and prosperous nation by standing on traditional values.

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Also on the analysts' list of winning debate topics are economic growth, taxes, spending, national security and judicial nominations.

The debate will kick off at 8 p.m. (ET) with CNN anchor and chief national correspondent John King as moderator.

CNN, Hearst Television’s WMUR, and the New Hampshire Union Leader are hosting the event, which will also be the first debate in the primary state of New Hampshire.

The following Republican candidates will participate in the debate airing on CNN: Minnesota Congresswoman Michele Bachmann, businessman Herman Cain, former Speaker Newt Gingrich, Texas Congressman Ron Paul, former Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty, former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney and former Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum.

The seven potential candidates will go head to head on most major issues plaguing the nation but reports say Romney is generally considered the frontrunner at this early point in the battle for the GOP nomination, according to CNN data.

Romney will be the center of attention on Monday night, but Gingrich might have the most to prove, according to media reports.

On the pivotal issue of the economy, Democrats insist: “Without Obama, the recession would have been worse.” Republicans respond, “Without Obama, the recovery would have been better.”

According to the Conservative Action Project, lawmakers must restore our traditional American values if the nation is going to survive this economic crisis.

“Conservatives recognize that government policies which weaken the family take a special toll on the poor,” the organization recently wrote in a letter to Congress.

“The results of families falling apart has huge moral and financial costs for all of us since society will pay through wasteful and fraud ridden programs supporting the welfare state.”

Other potential contenders may still throw their hat into the ring after Monday night’s debate including former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, Texas Gov. Rick Perry and former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani.

It should be noted that no postwar president ever won reelection with an unemployment rate above 7.2 percent. Reagan achieved his 1984 landslide with that relatively high joblessness number because the situation had so dramatically improved from 10.8 percent, in November 1982.

The questions for the debate are selected by WMUR-TV’s Jean Mackin, Josh McElveen and Jennifer Vaughn and New Hampshire Union Leader’s John DiStaso and Tom Fahey.

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