Hugh Hewitt

The ten declared GOP candidates for president next gather on May 15 in Columbia, South Carolina. Brit Hume of the Fox News Channel’s Special Report will moderate, and will be joined by the Fox correspondents Chris Wallace and Wendell Goler. The audience will not be spared the unwieldy number of candidates, but at least the questions will have to be less odd than some of those offered up by Chris Matthews.

Given Mitt Romney’s performance in the first debate and the kudos he earned from across the spectrum of pundits, expect the other nine to find some opportunities to take some knocks at the former Massachusetts governor. Expect more “gates of Hell” declarations from Senator McCain who has very little else to offer conservatives who haven’t forgotten or forgiven McCain-Feingold, the Gang of 14 or McCain-Kennedy.

But there will almost certainly be two big subjects for the Fox Three to probe. The first will be Rudy’s abortion stance(s).

By the time we get to Tuesdays night, Rudy will no doubt have retooled his abortion response to something along the lines of:

“You know what voters care about when it comes to abortion and the presidency? They care about judges. I haven’t been particularly effective in getting my message out on this, as my friend Ted Olsen has been kind enough to point out to me. Ted and I have spent a lot of time, a lot of time, talking about judges, and about the sort of judges that my old colleagues from Ronald Reagan Justice’s Department have turned out to be, and of course I am talking about Chief Justice Roberts and Justice Alito and also Judge Mike McConnell and now retired Judge Mike Luttig, although Mike was at the White House when I was over at Justice. Most of these men were ten or more years younger than I am when I was #3 at Justice and then when I went up to New York to take on the mob as the United States Attorney there. But I can tell you this: W knew how to pick legal talent, and how to find originalists, and that’s who I am going to put on the bench as president and I think that’s what people want to know when it comes to abortion and the presidency.”

When the follow-up comes about the Planned Parenthood contributions, Rudy should respond,

Hugh Hewitt

Hugh Hewitt is host of a nationally syndicated radio talk show. Hugh Hewitt's new book is The War On The West.