GOP debate crunchtime: 'The time for lowering expectations is over'


BOULDER, Colo. — Amid raised stakes and dwindling opportunities to break through, the Republican presidential contenders on Wednesday were set to meet for their third televised debate.

The CNBC cablecast is the first to focus exclusively on pocketbook issues, the voters' No. 1 priority, further increasing the pressure with less than 100 days to go until the first GOP votes are cast in Iowa. With a crowded, prime time debate stage threatening to limit airtime, the Republicans have little room for error, their delicate task being one of projecting empathy with an economically insecure electorate while also offering concrete solutions.

"They won't believe you have a plan if they don't believe you care," Republican pollster Frank Luntz told the Washington Examiner.

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