Panel places bets in the 'Candidate Casino'

Reaction from the 'Special Report' All-Star panel


This is a rush transcript from "Special Report," October 30, 2015. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

BRET BAIER, ANCHOR: After the debate, it's time to head into the Candidate Casino. It is Friday, after all. Some people love this. Some people really hate it. It's amazing on Twitter and Facebook. But we do it anyway.


BAIER: We're back with the panel. You have $100 in chips. This is to find the eventual nominee. How do you break up your $100, Steve Hayes?

STEVE HAYES, THE WEEKLY STANDARD: So for the Republicans I'm giving $55 to Marco Rubio, $25 to Ted Cruz, $10 to Chris Christie, $5 each to Ben Carson and Donald Trump. I mean, I think Carson and Trump have a path, but it's a narrow path despite the fact that they are leading national polls today and doing well in the early states.

I think, Rubio, to me, feels like Apple stock in the late 1990s. He has got talent. He has got a lot of things going for him. And people are beginning to see it the more he gets a stage to present it.

And Ted Cruz, I thought, had a really terrific debate the other night and sort of stood out from the crowd in a way that he hadn't in the previous two debates. And I imagine he does get a lot of looks from the people who eventually move on from Ben Carson and Donald Trump.

BAIER: Anne, it's your first time in the casino?

ANNE GEARAN, THE WASHINGTON POST: Yes. My first gamble here.

BAIER: OK. Welcome.

GEARAN: I have not done well in actual gambling.


BAIER: We will see how you do here.

GEARAN: So I also have Rubio on top, $30 on Rubio, and $30 also on Bush. Yes, I know. But campaigns are very long and on paper he has all of the attributes to go that distance. He doesn't have a lot of time to make up for the hole that he appears to be in right now, but I think over the ark of a long campaign he has an equal shot to Rubio. And $20 on Trump, $10 on Carson and $10 on Kasich. I think both Trump and Carson have shown greater staying power than I would have expected some months before and I think they deserve to be a part of this now.

BAIER: OK. On Twitter, Bobby writes in and he has got $50 on Rubio, $25 on Cruz, $15 on Kasich, $10 on Christie. And then we have got Yvonne. She is going heavy Trump, $60 on Trump, $25 on Cruz, $15 on Carson. Then this was interesting. Kettle Brand Chips said "Bret, I would eat them. Why would you put chips on" wait, oh, never mind. So we have brands that are watching --


BAIER: -- watching the casino. I thought we would share that one. OK, Jonah, where are your chips?

JONAH GOLDBERG, NATIONAL REVIEW: The potato chips have come self-aware.


GOLDBERG: That's bad news for me. So, for similar reasons as Steve explained I went almost all in for the Cubans, $45 on Rubio, $45 on Cruz. I think Christie is the most undervalued guy out there. I think he has the best chance, unlike Jeb Bush, to actually replicate the McCain strategy of catapulting out of New Hampshire, and $5 on Trump. If I could make a side bet I would put, if you gave me good odds, that the eventual ticket is all Cuban.

BAIER: Wow. That's long odds. OK, quickly, winners and losers? Winner first.

GOLDBERG: My winner for the same reasons that Steve laid out is Marco Rubio. He took apart his greatest competition, Jeb Bush, like Hannibal Lecter versus a census taker. And the big loser of the night was CNBC, who got the most amazing ratings they ever had in 30 years only to get exposed as incompetent and biased which has to sting.

BAIER: Winner, then loser, Anne?

GEARAN: Winner, Hillary Clinton. I think every week that has Trump and Carson at the top of the Republican field is a good one for her. She has also consolidated Herbert standing in the polls after the Benghazi hearing. NBC poll out just this week has her over 50 percent.

Loser was Jeb Bush. He needed to really hit a grand slam at this debate and I think he got a single, maybe, maybe. And he needed to look a lot more fired up than he did. I just spent a day with him in New Hampshire and he didn't look that fired up there either.

BAIER: Steve?

HAYES: My winner is House Republicans because after years of infighting and one could argue dysfunction they have managed to elevate in Paul Ryan a House speaker who is a long-time movement conservative, has taken on the establishment and won, and as an effective spokesman for reform conservatism.

My loser is Hillary Clinton. She had a good week. I think many thought she had a great week last week. But I think these emails today are a reminder that she said things in her testimony that didn't get the kind of scrutiny immediately that they are getting now. And she has got in these new emails several contradictions of her testimony from last week.

BAIER: We will follow it. That's it for the panel.

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