Thursday, October 20, 2016

State Of The Race: Rubio vs Murphy-- Lazy Pundit Jonathan Chait Gets It All Wrong


The Brits want us to see this film before we vote. He's a really repressible, profoundly ignorant man. And so are his supporters. Monday I watched the Florida Senate debate between Republican incumbent Marco Rubio, a slick career politician with big ambitions, and Patrick Murphy, surely one of the stupidest and worthless men to have ever served in Congress and recently voted among the least effective members of Congress. Rubio was a far better debater and a somewhat more appealing candidate. Murphy looked like he would start crying when Rubio hit him with accusations he had no answers to-- like how he voted to deport DREAMers, despite the bullshit take he paints now about being a champion of immigrants. Murphy has just spent 4 years being a champion of one group and one group only: Wall Street banksters. Policy-wise, Murphy, a "former" Republican is as vile and contemptible as... Rubio. But in this election Rubio has been unable to unglue himself from Trump and from the Republican agenda. So despite running against the least competent and least attractive Democratic candidate in any state, Murphy could still beat Rubio.

In another showing of his worst partisan hackishness and utter disregard-- if not contempt-- for the well-being of the country, President Obama (who, according to a top Biden staffer, has been promised massive financial help with his presidential library in return for getting Murphy elected) just cut another dishonest ad touting the worthless Murphy to unsuspecting low-info voters-- which is exactly how Murphy won the primary. Obama... also once the lesser of evils candidate, has been a mediocre president whose only really significant accomplishment has been to be the first African-American elected president. Other than that he's as much a crap-president as any I've watched since LBJ-- Nixon, Ford, Carter, Reagan, Bush I, Clinton, Bush II... an unbroken string of ineffective mediocrities, some worse than others, but none worth a dime. Sorry for the tangent. Yesterday, Jonathan Chait asked the wrong question in New York Magazine: Why Are Senate Democrats Letting Marco Rubio Win? A better question-- not that I'd expect it of Chait-- would have been, "Why Are Senate Democrats About To Elect Chuck Schumer Their Leader After He Stuck Them With Patrick Murphy And A Stable Of Other Less Than Worthless Candidates?"

Murphy, Kathy McGinty (PA), Ted Strickland (OH), Ann Kirkpatrick, (AZ) Patty Judge (IA) are 5 detestable candidates who have two things working in their favor: Trump and the horribleness of the Republican agenda. But none of them is a good candidate or good political leader. Each is the political equivalent of a steaming pile of manure. And at this point the only one of them that looks like they still have a reasonable shot is McGinty-- and strictly because the former fracking lobbyist is being dishonestly touted by Elizabeth Warren as worthwhile and because Clinton's Pennsylvania coattails look extremely strong. (And because Pat Toomey is as horrible a candidate as McGinty.) The rest will all be flushed down the toilet, unfortunately not with Schumer's ambitions.

OK, back to Chait. Apparently not knowing a thing about Murphy, he's shocked the DSCC has pulled all their money out of the race-- transferring it to campaigns they think they can win (Pennsylvania, North Carolina and Indiana, maybe even Missouri) and vengeful after Murphy's father (and Saudi connections) have renegged on funds promised to Schumer and Tester. "[P]olls can turn out wrong," whines Chait, apparently not cognizant that Rubio is leading Murphy by an average of 4.2 points, according to RealClearPolitics, and that the lackluster endorsement by the Miami Herald-- Murphy possibly just embellished his résumé, didn't actually lie-- isn't going to save him. Basically the endorsement is about how disappointing Rubio is-- amen (he's wretched in every way)-- and not anything positive about Murphy, since there is nothing positive about Murphy that one could possibly say with a straight face other than maybe the Democrats will be able to prevail upon him to vote with them some times... maybe. Murphy is using the Democratic Party platform he's never been enthusiastic about, as a crutch and cudgel. Too bad Rubio is stuck with Trump and the GOP, but he has no one to blame but himself. Anyone who votes for either of them, is fouling himself or herself.

Chait whined, accusingly that "Rubio is the best hope for the future of the Republican Party’s donor class. Rubio is almost surely going to run for president in 2020, and he gives his party the cheapest possible concessions to the center-- an appeal to moderates with affective moderation and well-honed performative qualities, rather than concessions on policy. Rubio memorably expressed his disgust with Trump in a way that made the news media and anti-Trump Republicans alike swoon, but without committing himself to any course of action that might alienate Trump’s base:

"Yes" he continued, "Rubio was steamrolled in the primaries. But not every candidate who loses is a bad politician. If Rubio holds his Senate seat by a few points or less, and then wins his party’s nomination in four years, Democrats will be kicking themselves they didn’t pull out every stop to end his political career, in the short term, when they had the chance."

Chait, like the Miami Herald endorser, was unable to muster a single positive attribute that would make Patrick Murphy worth a vote-- just that Rubio is a potential threat and that Trump is unspeakably horrible. Murphy is also unspeakably horrible and it would be nice if Jonathan Chait bothered to do the research about his record, his Trump-related business dealings and his unspeakable corruption, so that he'd be better informed when he tries to write about politics.


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