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Students at top California university reveal who won second GOP presidential debate

A group of young conservatives at the University of Southern California are ready for a new GOP future but agree that former President Donald Trump is the strongest candidate going into 2024.

Seven Republican candidates battled at the recent second presidential debate to prove if they can be an alternative to front-runner Trump, who is polling ahead with 60% of Republican primary support, according to Fox News polling.

“Vivek Ramaswamy,” said four students when asked who won the debate, with only one student saying they felt Gov. Ron DeSantis, R-Fla., was last Wednesday night’s winner.

The presidential candidates railed against Trump for skipping the second debate, with DeSantis saying he was “missing in action” and former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie calling him “Donald Duck” – and members of the USC College Republicans chapter agreed that Trump “needed to be there.”

“I feel like there is improvement in almost every candidate in terms of just how they presented themselves. I think DeSantis had a noticeably better stance – I guess you could say just better projecting his views and his opinions,” another student said.

“You’ve just got to prove that you can be more viable than Trump, and I just don’t see that yet,” said Lorenzo Aguirre, a business and real estate finance major.

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