One of my favorite political websites, Electoral Vote, has been ramping up for the (still relatively distant) presidential election.
In the latest issue, they sum up an article from the NY Times that predicts that Marco Rubio will be the Republican nominee for president. First of all, they point out that exactly five years ago, Ross Douthat predicted that Mitt Romney would be the Republican nominee. It was a bold prediction back then, but it was right. Of course, past luck doesn’t always guarantee future success, but it makes a good headline.
More interesting is Douthat’s reasons for predicting Marco Rubio will win the nomination. Regular readers may recall that over a month ago I predicted that Rubio would win the Republican nomination. But Douthat gives actual reasons why Rubio will get the nod, and it is intereating. Rubio will win because of process of elimination – every other candidate has a fatal flaw.
Donald Trump. No party has ever nominated a weirdo like him
Ben Carson. See Trump
Carly Fiorina. She is running for a cabinet position
Jeb Bush. He’s flailing in all directions and only the super-rich like him
John Kasich. He is too moderate and too ornery about it
Chris Christie. Too many cones
Ted Cruz. The party leaders despise him
Bobby Jindal. Carson and Cruz suck up his oxygen
Mike Huckabee. See Jindal
Rick Santorum. The voters are not the slightest bit interested
Lindsey Graham. See Santorum
George Pataki. See Graham
So Marco Rubio is the only man left standing. Douthat says that Rubio is close to the ideological center of the Republican Party, comes from a key swing state, is a good debater, has an impressive biography and personal style, and most important, nobody hates him.
I agree. If anyone can come up with a counter-argument for why somebody else will win, I’d love to hear it.
As Electoral Vote and others have pointed out, Ted Cruz is in it for the long haul. He also has been great at generating money and creating an organization. Now that Rubio has given up on the senate completely, he begins to look at little desperate. He was only one bottle of water away from jumping on the the national scene a few years ago when he gave the response to the state of the union address, I think he is only one gaff away from losing to Ted Cruz. Either way, it is only good news for Hillary.
I been following electoral-vote.com since 2003/2004. The votemaster after election finished turned out to be computer scientist (Dr. Andrew S Tanenbaum) whose books I used in my undergraduate/graduate Computer Science studies.
As far as Rubio is concerned, I seriously cannot think of any accomplishment he has. He has missed so many votes in senate, all his sentences start with “these are extraordinary/dangerous times..”. I mean I cannot think of any reason to vote for him. He is extremely light weight, Hillary will eat him for morning snack.
Yes, I used not just Tanenbaum’s books, but his operating system (Minix). Tanenbaum also helped me get my start with this blog. He’s a great guy.
I agree with Hassan. Nothing impressive about Rubio. But then, there’s nothing impressive about any of the Republican wanna-be’s. The Repub base may be just crazy enough to go for Carson or Trump. It’ll be interesting to see what happens.
Like many comedians, bloggers, and pundits, I would personally love it if Trump wins the nomination. Apparently, so does Clinton. Carson has absolutely no chance.
I generally agree with his conclusion that Rubio is the least flawed candidate. However, I don’t think that we can count Trump or Cruz out yet either. The Republican party has clearly lost control of the Frankenstein’s monster that they created in the Tea Party, and as such, I don’t think that the flaws of those two are enough to be fatal in the eyes of many primary voters, if they are even seen as flaws at all.
So at this point, it seems like Trump, Cruz, and Rubio are the ‘serious’ candidates. Jeb is probably wondering why he even bothered. He and Kasich will probably stick around for a while in an effort to make it look like there are still responsible adults in the room. The rest of them are likely out as soon as they get a book advance, a cushy job offer from Fox News, or the promise of an administration post with one of the three that still matter.
By pure happy coincidence I came to that same conclusion today (not a pundit nor do I resemble one but occasionally I’m guilty of pontification when I’m not chasing small children from my lawn). This comes with Texas media articles on the strategy of Cruz and I’d rather listen to blackboard fingernails turned up to 11 while dining on buzzard puke sushi than think about Cruz as POTUS. I guess that makes me no better than the Obama haters but I can live with that. Rubio, at least, has a smaller skin-crawl quotient.
not to mention the one ton ape in the room and I’m not referring to Trump, that Cruz is not even a natural born citizen of this country. The discussion that would ensue in the media and the water cooler chats on how far the GOP can go hypocritically after all the “birther” clatter has been spread manure style for the last few years. I don’t think anyone of sense could take the republican party seriously after that, more so than the last couple of decades of the Gingrich, Delay, and Ryan silliness.
Don, if it makes you feel any better, almost everyone in Congress hates Cruz as well.
Interesting analysis, but the fly in the ointment may be Rubio himself, especially after his latest comment defending his absenteeism from the Senate on a significant fraction of floor votes, proclaiming that his votes don’t matter anyway and prompting an editorial in yesterday’s Florida SunSentinel encouraging him shut up and do his job or resign.
In any case, he’s always struck me as something of an insincere lightweight (ok, that describes most of the current slate, and I’m not going to make a joke about Christie here). Support among his own Latino base is also suspect, given his antiquated stance on Cuba. I think he’d be crushed by whoever the Democratic nominee might be.
The hour is getting late and Republicans may well be stuck with one of the current front runners after all, and in my humble opinion it serves them right!
I think the republicans are getting crazier so its not impossible that trump or carson get elected. Plus the first 4 states have trump or carson in the lead. Traditionally has anyone really won from behind? Can rubio? I’m not sure which state he is up in right now. He’s 3rd even in florida.