MANCHESTER, N.H. (AP) — The Republican Party's presidential class demanded aggressive steps to curb illegal immigration, seizing on a delicate political issue while facing off in New Hampshire on Monday night during a crowded and pointed preview of the 2016 primary season's first full-fledged debate.
All but three of the 17 major Republican candidates for president participated in what was essentially a debate lite, which - unlike Thursday's nationally televised debate in Cleveland - didn't have a cut-off for participation.
Without exception, the candidates aimed their criticism at Democrats instead of each other in a two-hour meeting where they had more in common than not. Not mentioned was the candidate making the most news headed into Thursday's debate: Donald Trump. The billionaire businessman declined to participate in Monday's gathering, but is poised to take center stage later in the week.
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