The debate is hosted by News Nation in Tuscaloosa, Alabama.
Indian-American Vivek Ramaswamy sought to halt former South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley's gaining momentum in the fourth Republican Presidential Debate today. Four candidates were up against each other to secure a spot as the party's presidential candidate through a stringent selection process.
Indian-American entrepreneur Vivek Ramaswamy, former South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis and former New Jersey Governor Chris Christie were on stage for the face-off.
Indian-American Vivek Ramaswamy took an early lead in the fourth Presidential Debate regarding speaking time. Nikki Haley relatively remained silent in the debate but remained in focus and centre of attacks from her opponents in the debate.
A close contest took place between Ron DeSantis and Vivek Ramaswamy, with almost similar speaking times. Speaking time is not the sole metric to judge a candidate's ability. More speaking time and convincing arguments can help sway public opinion in the candidate's favour during the voting process.
Nikki Haley defended her decision to accept corporate money and is emerging as the top target of her rivals during the fourth Republican presidential debate.
Vivek Ramaswamy accused Ms Haley of having "a corruption problem" and held up a pad of paper with "NIKKI = CORRUPT" written on it. He called her "a puppet" and accused her of "using identity politics" as "a form of intellectual fraud." "It's not worth my time to respond to him," Nikki Haley said.
The Republican debate started with a pile-up of allegations against Nikki Haley, with Ron DeSantis attacking her, saying, "She caves anytime the left comes after her," CNN reported and said he is the only candidate who has delivered against the Democrats. Nikki Haley responded to the allegations and said, "He is lying about her track record".
Vivek Ramaswamy attacked Ms Haley too for acting on the will of the donors and said she had joined the board of Boeing after stepping down as US ambassador to the United Nations and gave paid speeches "like Hillary Clinton".
The candidates hoped to stall Nikki Haley's momentum in the presidential debate. Haley's rise has been attributed to strong performances in the previous three debates, and she is riding high on a key endorsement from the powerful Koch family and $250,000 from billionaire Democratic donor Reid Hoffman.
A heated back and forth was seen between Vivek Ramaswamy, the leading candidate in the fourth debate and Chris Christie. The former Governor accused Mr Ramaswamy of changing his positions in the Ukraine war and said his plan for resolving the war in Ukraine was to give Russia all the territory it had seized in Ukraine. The Indian-American entrepreneur said this is not what he proposed.
"You do this at every debate. You go out on the stump and you say something, all of us see it on video, we confront you on the debate stage, you say you didn't say it, and then you back away," Mr Christie responded.
Chris Christie also questioned his opponents over their stance on sending US troops to Gaza in the ongoing war in the region and said he would "absolutely" send US troops to rescue American hostages and slammed Ron DeSantis for not responding to the question directly. Like the previous three Republican debates, Christie is after former US President Donald Trump, who is hoping for a Republican ticket to contest for another term and questioned his opponents on why they are not discussing Trump.
"Truth needs to be spoken. He is unfit," Chris Christie said on Trump's Republican ticket hopes and referred to him as Voldemort - the antagonist in J.K. Rowling's series "Harry Potter," CNN reported.