ABC Republican Debate Gets Off to Most Awkward Start Ever


Saturday night’s GOP debate got off to an awkward start, with some of the candidates waiting in the queue instead of heading onto the stage when their names were called.

The strangeness began when the second candidate announced, Dr. Ben Carson, stood still in the queue. Next up was Sen. Ted Cruz (R., Texas), who grinned at Carson in amusement as he walked by. When Donald Trump, who holds the center podium, was called, he too stood behind Carson and didn’t walk on the stage.

At one point, a stage hand actually waved Carson to go onto the stage, but he still didn’t move.

Sen. Marco Rubio (R., Fla.) also smiled as he walked by Carson and Trump when announced, as did Jeb Bush, who gave Trump a tap on the shoulder. The noise was loud enough that no one could hear when David Muir announced Ohio Gov. John Kasich.

Carson still hadn’t come onto the stage, with empty podiums still visible after Kasich’s name was announced.

“Dr. Ben Carson, please come out on the stage. He’s standing there as well. Dr. Carson,” Muir said.

“And Donald Trump,” said co-moderator Martha Raddatz.

“And lastly, we welcome to the stage Donald Trump,” Muir said, when Trump hadn’t budged.

Carson mentioned Kasich wasn’t on stage yet at that point, and Muir finally announced him as well so everyone could hear.

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