New Orleans Ok, I called the Iowa caucuses for Hillary, based on the strength of her organization, and sure enough her organization pulled it out for her by a hair, though in delegates awarded it was a tie, and, maybe, we’ll see down the road, where she might end up with more in Iowa at the next levels. Sanders still looks good on my bet for New Hampshire, but after Iowa I’m scared to death. Clinton is still the overwhelming favorite for the Democratic nomination, but the fear I’m feeling it is all about the general election. Entitlement doesn’t count in that contest and nothing crashes like a retread when it blows out. This could break very bad. Not just because of Clinton’s campaign and her posture as a candidate, which surely has to be corrected, but also because of this so-called Republican establishment and what it considers a “moderate,” especially when applied to someone like Florida Senator Marco Rubio.
Nate Silver, who I still miss when his 538 blog ran in the Times, took a look at Rubio as a “moderate” almost exactly three years ago. Puzzle this, my friends, when Silver mashed up the polls on voting records and weighted the scores statistically he found Rubio had a score of 51 on the scale of conservatives, a couple of points to the right of the average in the Republican Congress. Yikes! And, more conservative than McCain, Romney, and George W. If he’s a moderate, what was Attila the Hun? Silver finds,
The last two Republican presidential nominees, John McCain and Mitt Romney, had a score of 39 by comparison, meaning that they were more moderate than Mr. Rubio. Mr. Rubio is also rated as being to the right of Ronald Reagan, who had a score of 44, and George W. Bush, who had a score of 46. Among Republican presidential nominees since 1960, in fact, only the extraordinarily conservative Barry Goldwater, who had a score of 67, rates as being more conservative than Mr. Rubio.
Fast forward to today where Rubio is already legendary for reneging on immigration reform and a respected site thinkprogress.org highlights the problem on Rubio’s distinctly immoderate positions. Their short list includes these horror stories:
· He wants to permanently extend the government’s controversial spying programs.
· He has pledged to roll back marriage equality.
· He supports multiple voter suppression efforts.
· He doesn’t believe in climate change.
· He opposed federal action to help prevent violence against women.
· He believes employers should be able to deny birth control to their employees.
· He doesn’t think women who are victims of rape or incest should be allowed to get an abortion.
He’s young, he’s Cuban-American, his wife is not an ex-President, but an ex-Miami Dolphins cheerleader, and he’s from Florida, which is a must-have bellwether in a general election, and he’s Teflon with little backstory or record, and we could have big, big trouble. She can beat Trump or Cruz, but Rubio is dangerous.
Some of his Republican opponents slam him as being the “Republican Obama.” They may think that’s a slur, but I’m scared: that’s Clinton kryptonite!