A focus group of South Carolinians overwhelmingly chose Senator Ted Cruz as the winner of the first presidential debate of 2016 on Thursday night.
The group of 26 Republican voters was assembled by pollster Frank Luntz at the request of Fox News Channel. When Luntz asked them, 'Who won this evening?" They unanimously yelled, "Cruz."
The highlight of the debate, and the moment that seemed to resonate most with these voters, was the exchange between Cruz and Republican front runner Donald Trump after the real estate mogul renewed his suggestion that Cruz may not be eligible to serve as President of the United States given his birth in Canada to an American mother.
The focus group believes Cruz flat-out beat Trump with his response.
"I would suggest we focus on who is best prepared to be commander because that's the most important question facing the country," Cruz said, in a moment that polled highly favorable with the focus group.
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"There are other attorneys, and very, very fine constitutional attorneys that feel that because he was not born on the land he cannot run for office," Trump said, in a moment that was highly unfavorable with the voters.
"I have spent my entire life defending the Constitution before the U.S. Supreme Court, and I'll tell you I'm not going to be taking legal advice from Donald Trump," Cruz responded.
Voters in the group said Cruz "handled" Trump, and referenced the Texas Senator's delivery as "eloquent" and "level headed." A few voters defended Trump saying, "Donald Trump is just making a point that this is a weakness in the Cruz campaign that the Democratic Party is going to go after, whether it's fair or not, we all know the Democrats they don't play fair."