There was one true star of the Fox presidential debate and no, it was not Donald Trump or Jeb Bush.

It was Megyn Kelly.

The 44-year-old Irish American daughter of an educator, Edward Kelly, from a modest Albany, New York suburb, has exploded on the national scene these last few years.

Her Dad died when she was fifteen and the family struggled. This is no silver spoon success story.

You might remember she skewered Republican kingpin Karl Rove on air after he refused to accept polling numbers coming in from Ohio showing Obama ahead in 2012.

Kelly asked Rove, "Is this just math that you do as a Republican to make yourself feel better? Or is this real?"

That honesty made her one of the hottest properties in television and soon she was sidelining Sean Hannity to a later spot on Fox.

She is hotter than ever now.

During the debate she proved to be as tough and fair an interviewer as any journalist alive and even drew comparisons to Tim Russert, the late, legendary “Meet the Press” host.

I tuned in expecting the worse --- a series of puffball questions from the Fox News panel who clearly support the GOP contenders in the race for the White House.

Kelly put all that to one side right away by stunning Trump with a question on why he referred to women as fat pigs 

The actual quote was in your face:“You've called women you don't like fat pigs, dogs, slobs, and disgusting animals.”


She followed up with one for Governor Walker after he seemed to suggest he would not make an exception for the life of the mother in abortion cases.

She asked “Would you really let a mother die rather than have an abortion?”

That’s the kind of direct fire journalism we are simply not used to seeing these days when cable stations divide into softball interviews between folks and hosts they entirely agree with.

Trump has since compounded his clumsy answered by implying Kelly was having her period and was mad at him as a result.

It is utterly pathetic stuff and a clear sign that his campaign is about to start unravelling. 53 per cent of the voting electorate are women. Trump has been exposed by Kelly as a misogynist and sleazy operator.

I predict when the Donald campaign comes off the rails that Kelly will be the person credited with starting the derailing.

She was simply fearless with him.

Unknown to itself, Fox News is serving as an affirmative hiring Mecca for Irish Americans with Greta Van Susteren (100 percent Irish and proud on her mother’s Conway side) Bill O’Reilly, now Kelly and then Hannity as their nightly lineup.

Kelly has suddenly shot to the top of the Fox firmament and is the new face of cable news.

One wonders whether Hillary Clinton would ever consent to sitting down for an interview with her. It would certainly make for extraordinary theater.

But as Donald Trump learned the hard way once the klieg light are on all bets are off with Megyn Kelly.

It must be the Fighting Irish in her.