CNN’s Republican Debate: ‘This Is Round 2’

By Mark Joyella 

Will CNN’s Wednesday night Republican presidential debate be a slugfest? CNN president Jeff Zucker says the network’s promos (pictured, right) are built around the grudge match theme.

“That was the idea. This is Round 2 of a heavyweight bout,” Zucker told the Los Angeles Times.

Politico’s Mike Allen writes it will be the “opposite” of the Fox News debate:

In the first debate, candidates were mostly deferential to Trump, figuring they didn’t want to have his barbs, or his supporters’ ire, directed at them. This time, everyone’s gonna pile on – this is the “Thump and dump Trump” debate. CNN promos have been portraying the debate as a title fight between Trump and Jeb, and moderator Jake Tapper is as high-testosterone as you’re going to find.

Tapper, on CNN’s Reliable Sources, predicted some of the candidates might be tempted to throw a punch his way. “I mean, the media is a whipping boy, and it’s a Republican debate. Let’s be frank. Republicans often take issue with the media writ large.”