Monday, February 08, 2016

Does Rubio's Malfunction Mean The Brokered Convention Is The Only Hope The GOP Establishment Has Left?


Not even Herr Trumpf calling Cruz a "pussy" tonight at a rally in Manchester-- for not being as gung-ho as he should be about torturing people-- could knock the Rubio robot out of the news. But no one could have gotten more of a hard-on from Rubio's agony at the hands of Chris Christie Saturday night than Paul Ryan. Christie may not have ever persecuted Al Qaeda or the Taliban or ISIS successfully, but he absolutely skewered former coke runner and ex-gay prostitute Marco Rubio, even if not in a way that will save Christie's own moribund campaign. And speaking of moribund campaigns, Jeb, called for the overturn of Citizens United! What a crazy campaign this has turned into!

At the big Koch brothers conclave near Coachella 2 weekends ago, the GOP elite fundraising machine had finally settled on Rubio and get the message to Jeb to stop spending his money attacking the sweaty and robotic last hope. Apparently they didn't bother telling Christie. Sunday morning on CNN's State of the Union, Christie told Jake Tapper that the "march to anoint Senator Rubio is over... You can't trust Senator Rubio to be the nominee of this party... Rubio is unprepared to be president of the United States."

Writing a quasi-obituary for Rubio's campaign in New York after the debate, Ed Kilgore opined that all the "robotic debater... probably had to do to move out of New Hampshire as the Establishment darling who still appealed to conservative evangelicals and movement conservatives was to do as well in this debate as he generally has."
Christie, in the worst condition of any of the Establishment challengers, in fifth place in the polls and with no obvious path to the nomination, landed the strongest blows on Rubio we've seen yet. Worse yet, Rubio responded to a pounding from Christie for being a paper-thin senator with no accomplishments by playing the part to a T: robotically repeating talking points even as the New Jersey governor mocked him for robotically repeating talking points.

...[I]t didn't work, and when you added in the pounding he took for his universally acknowledged achilles heel, his immigration flip-flop, it was by far his worst debate performance, at the worst possible time, and against exactly the wrong competition. He recovered during the second half of the event, but you could still smell the cordite in the air.

At Koch Central they're looking back at Saturday night in full realization that the hopeless tub of lard from Jersey had publicly humiliated and all but obliterated their best chance to stop Trumpf (or, less horrible to them, Cruz) from walking away with the nomination without them having to resort to the kind of bloody, divisive convention maneuver likely to tear the GOP apart so thoroughly that even as flawed a Democratic candidate as Clinton could win against their billion dollar push to buy the White House. Christie even managed to get the audience-- made up primarily of donors, which is who gets tickets to these events-- to boo Rubio, whose body language showed he was melting inside. Worse yet, Herr Trumpf managed to put on a semi-respectable face through the whole event, compounding their problem.

[Funny put what the Jackie Gleason of the 2016 campaign said "that’s what Washington, D.C. does. The drive-by shot at the beginning with incorrect and incomplete information, and then the memorized 25-second speech that is exactly what his advisers gave him," he was also describing, accidentally, Clinton's ugliest debate technique as well. She used it, repeatedly, last week against Bernie and although it was never called out, it continued to turn voters off to her candidacy.]

This all leaves plenty of space for the Ayn Rand worshipper to call for unity and mouth mindless platitudes about right-wing aspirations and delusions, while establishment allies continue to ominously denigrate Trumpf and Cruz and he builds up his reputation as a Republican Man For All Seasons,
"With respect to Donald Trump, I just think he has a lack of experience in this space. And I just find his temperament and his sense of purpose to not be conducive to succeeding as president," Baker said. "And on Ted Cruz, he is already a forceful and articulate advocate for his point of view. But he hasn't demonstrated an ability to work with others."
Even if they can't bring guns into the Quicken Loans Arena in July... they can reject being pushed around and trampled on by The Man and instead smuggle in nitroglycerine and make explosives in the toilet.

UPDATE: Dixville Notch Voters Tell Hillary To End Her Bitter, Divisive Campaign Now

Dixville Notch, way up near Canada, voted at midnight. There were 9 voters. Bernie beat the dishonest establishment Democrat 4-0. And Kasich beat Herr Trumpf 3-2. No votes for Rubio, Cruz, Christie, Jeb or the other also-rans. But how predictive is this town? In 1960 Nixon beat JFK 9-0. Four years later Goldwater beat LBJ 8-1. And then in 1968 Hubert Humphrey beat Nixon 8-4. So do we look at the Dixville Notch results as a contrary indication? Well, more recently they correctly picked Bush over Kerry; Obama over McCain and... oops-- a 5-5 tie between Obama and Romney.

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