Republican Presidential Debate Heats Up

By: T.J. Winick, ABC News
By: T.J. Winick, ABC News

In just over a month, voters will begin to choose who will be the next GOP candidate for president.

Last night's CNN YouTube debate gave the candidates a chance to speak out on the issues, the most heated being that of illegal immigration.

Once again, it was the issue of immigration that sparked the most heated exchange of the night.

"If you're going to take this holier than thou attitude, that your whole attitude is going to be," said Rudy Giuliani.

"I'm sorry, but immigration is not holier than thou, it's the law," stated Mitt Roney.

"This holier than thou attitude that you're perfect on immigration," said Giuliani.

"I'm not perfect," added Romney

Mitt Romney accused Rudy Giuliani of running a sanctuary city as mayor of New York. Giuliani pointed to illegal Guatemalan immigrants having done landscaping at Romney's home.

"It just so happens that you have a special immigration problem that nobody else has, you were employing illegal immigrants. That was a pretty serious thing, they were under your nose," Giuliani said to Romney.

The format of the YouTube debate in St. Petersburg, Florida did, however, allow for some lighter moments.

"For those of you who would call yourselves Christian conservatives. The death penalty, what would Jesus do?" asked one person on YouTube.

"Jesus was too smart to ever run for public office," responded Mike Huckabee.

"He always had funny lines last night and he showed he was thoughtful on issues like the death penalty. He effectively defended his record," stated George Stephanopoulos.

Still, the attacks came fast and furious, like John McCain versus Romney on whether waterboarding should be declared illegal.

"I'm astonished that you haven't found out what waterboarding is," said Governor John McCain.

And McCain versus Ron Paul on what the senator claims are isolationist policies.

"It's that kind of thinking that would allow a Hitler," said McCain.

"I'm not an isolationist. I want to trade with people, talk with people, travel but I don't want to send our troops overseas using force to tell them how to live," responded Ron Paul..

The Republican candidates have two more debates in December before the Iowa caucuses are held on Jan. 3.


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