By Carl Hiaasen

How The GOP Can Blow Another Election

December 11, 2012 12:00 am Category: Memo Pad 34 Comments A+ / A-
How The GOP Can Blow Another Election

Only 11 days after the re-election of Barack Obama, Marco Rubio flew to Iowa to informally begin his quest for the presidency in 2016.

He didn’t come out and admit it, but there’s no other reason for a Florida senator to visit the Hawkeye State in November, or any other time. Iowa holds the first big primary and is therefore treated with ludicrous attentiveness by future candidates.

At this point, only shut-ins and the morbidly curious are paying any attention to presidential politics. Everybody else is exhausted.

Yet last week, Rubio and Rep. Paul Ryan, who shared the GOP ticket with Mitt Romney, gave back-to-back speeches at a Washington hotel. The event was widely covered and analyzed.

Ryan, who’s trying to extricate himself from the wreckage of the Romney campaign, is also running for the White House in 2016. In the absence of a Gaga-style makeover and mass voter amnesia, he can’t win. This year he couldn’t even deliver his home state of Wisconsin.

Rubio, on the other hand, will be worth watching once voters recover from the hangover of 2012. His appeal is potentially broader than that of anybody on the GOP horizon, which isn’t saying much, but he’s still their best hope.

If the guys running the party were smart, here’s what they’d do: They would put Rubio, the son of Cuban immigrants, in charge of writing an immigration-reform bill that included a pathway to citizenship for the millions of undocumented aliens already living and working in the United States.

No single act would do more to convince Hispanic voters that the GOP wasn’t innately hostile toward them. That’s crucial because the White House cannot be won by a candidate who scares off Hispanics the way Romney and John McCain did.

If Rubio could produce an immigration package that passed the Senate and survived the neoconservative outcry in the House, Obama would sign it in a heartbeat. With that under his belt, Rubio would be the clear frontrunner.

Although elected as a hard-right conservative, he’s been sidling back toward the middle. It’s the only possible way to beat Hillary Rodham Clinton, the presumptive Democratic nominee.

The other night in Washington, Rubio made an unsubtle dig at the post-election whining of Romney and right-wing talk-show gasbags.

“Some say that our problem in America is that the American people have changed,” Rubio said, “that too many people want things from our government. But I am still convinced that the overwhelming majority of our people just want what my parents had — a chance.”

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How The GOP Can Blow Another Election Reviewed by on . Only 11 days after the re-election of Barack Obama, Marco Rubio flew to Iowa to informally begin his quest for the presidency in 2016. He didn't come out and ad Only 11 days after the re-election of Barack Obama, Marco Rubio flew to Iowa to informally begin his quest for the presidency in 2016. He didn't come out and ad Rating:

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  • http://www.facebook.com/dominick.vila.1 Dominick Vila

    I am delighted to hear Sen. Rubio and other GOP stars talk about creationism, home schooling, and insist that the way forward is to deny the poor a fair shake and ensure the wealthy can accumulate a larger fortune so that they can invest and create jobs in China, Indonesia and Bangladesh, enjoy a shopping spress in Paris, Rome, Madrid or London, send junior to Bali to celebrate his 18th birthday, or buy a Rafalca for therapeutic purposes courtesy of Uncle Sam.
    By all means, keep up the good work. Clinton-Warren will be delighted to entertain your agenda less than four years from now on the campaign trail.

    • rpg1408

      Clinton-Warren ! I like that . They would beat the pants off Rubio/ Ryan or Ryan/ Rubio. A consummation devoutly to be wished.

      • http://www.facebook.com/dominick.vila.1 Dominick Vila

        A Clinton-Warren ticket would win in 2016 by the largest landslide in U.S. history. Can you imagine that? Not only one, but two women in the highest offices in the land simultaneously? Talking about correcting an injustice with a bang!

        • rpg1408

          If only the Democratic Party would have the guts to do that ! Well, they did nominate Obama, so there is hope.

          • BillFromPA

            Quote: ‘If only the Democratic Party would have the guts to do that ! Well, they did nominate Obama, so there is hope.’

            The Dem party doesn’t need guts to do this, the base can nominate one or the other then the candidate decides who joins the ticket.

      • Sand_Cat

        Do you really want to see Ryan and Rubio without their pants? :-)

        • rpg1408

          Perish the thought!!!!

      • amarquez647

        Other choices: Clinton Feinstein, Clinton McCaskill, Clinton Sebelius, Clinton Napolitano

        • rpg1408

          The fact that such tickets are credible and are being discussed seriously is a good sign that at least some voters are living in the 21st century.

      • Bobcat1804

        San Antonio mayor, Julian Castro, would make an excellent choice as Hillary’s VP. His hispanic credibility, education, youth are all appealing. Not to mention, maybe putting Texas into play.

  • Eleanore Whitaker

    If more Americans are growing poorer and living in more austerity and wealth is continuing to grow for 1%, where are the 1% getting their wealth from if not the other 99%?

    The GOP has rich bois who have lived so high on the hog for so long now they can’t conceive that it’s their turn to crash.

    Americans of the Middle Class must stop handing tax subsidies to corporations reporting one record profit after another in the worst recession. If these corporations and rich bois are making these profits in a recession…who else but they, are causing the economic problems?

    Are they taking advantage of the Middle Class yet again? Are they taking advantage of the sick, the dying, the handicapped and the least educated to grow their wealth?

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/C22AJV5GXSF4QE3YJY5IGBTULU TSB

    This tactic will work for me!

  • http://www.facebook.com/rose.bergh.9 Rose Bergh

    I am an 87 year old woman who was born during the NOTCH years but as yet have not seen a RED CENT Due to us. I paid into SS and Medicare since I graduated at 17 and forced to retire because of my health at 70. I raised 5 children who married and they are still paying in to SS and Medicare and YOU call SS and Medicare ENTITIELMENTS ????????????????????? WAKE-UP.
    If you people had to live on my SS and pay Medical and prescription drugs the way we have to, MAYBE YOU would WAKE-UP. My wages were less a week and pay today is for an hour, so my SS is very meager. You couldn’t live one week on my check . It’s time to listen . R. S. Bergh

    • neece00

      I would agree with you Rose, personally I don’t consider Medicare an entitlement. After paying into the system for years, this should be a part of living and working.

    • amarquez647

      My wife had triple bypass $200,000+, the day of her surgery I had a heart attack. I had 3 stents put in my heart at $62,000 each. My pharmacy bill is over $1,300 permonth. With Medicare and supplemental insurance, we are still responsible for 20% of medical bills. We pay for Medicare and supplemental insurance. Then there is the doughnut hole. we are both over 65.

  • Jim Lou

    Obama won Iowa in 2008. That got him going.

  • dunivant66

    Just keep doing what the GOP does best; continue to degrade people! Especially Marco Rubio with his talk about Creationism and home schooling! The GOP is worried about the 1%, nobody is buying their bullshit and I mean nobody!

  • old_blu

    Sounds like he could be a great candidate as long as someone don’t tell him to pick someone like Palin or Ryan for a running mate, I think the tea baggers picked Palin, and the Koch brothers picked Ryan, maybe this time Senator Rubio could pick his own, then they would have a chance.

    • jarheadgene

      The BEST chance Marco Rubio has of becoming President is to become a Democrat. If he tries his hand at the GOP they will smear his name in a GOP Primary because the WHITE PLUTOCRATS will insist on another white male candidate. Or he will be so “BOUGHT and PAID” for it will be as obvious as RYAN trying to say, he cares about anyone but himself. Sorry Rubio … become a DEM and swim, or slowly sink and drown in the GOP cesspool.

      • old_blu

        I don’t know if he will change parties, although there was one who jumped ship the other day, it makes me happy when I see things like that.

        Even the rats will jump off when the ship is sinking.

      • Sand_Cat

        Do the Dems really want him? More importatnly, should they?

        • jarheadgene

          Only meant it tongue in cheek….Once someone becomes blinded by FOX news, it is really hard to get them to see the TRUTH.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Daniel-Jones/827014412 Daniel Jones

    Sorry..

    The GOP doesn’t allow belief in evolution.

  • howa4x

    Rubio needs a makeover but even that won’t change what he already said. All his origonial tealiban comments are preserved in the Utube vault. Add to that his current pandering to the anti science crowd in Iowa by saying the world in 6000 yrs old. He is on the same path as Romney, saying one thing and then backtracking like he did on the earth/age comment. He has also made enough anti abortion/contraception comments to keep women wary of him. He has to oppose gay marriage if he wants to keep the base luke warm, and being against affirmative action helps there. He like Ryan couldn’t carry his home state Fla even after the anti voter chicainery of the governor. If Scott looses he will have no base to run from. His version of the dream act has no pathway to citizenship, and was already rejected by Latino groups.
    Then there are all the talking heads that will keep him on the reservation and not let him stray too far. Although Limbaugh is the biggest gasbag, don;t forget Fox and Freinds, Coulter,O’Reiley, Beck, Huckabee, Palin, Hannity, and assorted guest appearences buy notable right wing stars. If he moves toward the center they will bash him.
    He also has to contend with all the tealiban statements in the congress that will be made over the next 4 yrs. While they may tone down their anti immigrant vitrol, they can be counted on to bash gays, and still carry on the war on women. Finally don’t forget what happens in the states affects his chances. The Koch bros war on labor is still going on with Mich being the latest victum. Right to work legislation is only there to break up the union’s political power, and lower wages and everyone knows this. Republican labor reps in that state have already been on TV bashing the republican governor/legislature. This type of legislation only is popular in the south where unions were never strong. Do it in a labor state like Michigan and you will have blowback at the ballot box. Rubio will have to take a stand on this. Also the war on immigrants and women is strong in republican states. Bills to limit access to abortion and contraception are popping out of the legilatures there, as well as anti immigrant ones. Any future republican will have to run carrying all this on their backs as well as a far more liberal younger generation that completely rejects their philospohy. So Rubio has a very long way to go. He still has to get by the ultra conservative base, and whatever he says there will haunt him in the general. He is facing an uphill battle.

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/JRG7PSDQWGYNGQNYISZFGBDIGE cc

    HELLOOOOOOOOOOO republican don’t care about poor or medicare i am 62 so i apply for my own health insurance i need 1 more to add so i will have 2 cause alot of doctor will not take on medicare or medicaine exspeical when obamacare i want good care from my doctor this has been blow -blow =blow for years bush time and other its …your family need help the system say you make to much how came you make to much if you are not working this country is so unfair to working american that one reason i took early retirement i want what mine and my hushand he die 28 years i want his to

  • idamag

    I think Rubio was their token Hispanic to get the Latino vote. If he decides to try for president he might find a different kind of treatment from the Republicans.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Joyce-Otway/100001719683388 Joyce Otway

    Let them all continue to belittle people, blacks , latinos the working class, the same people they call the’ underclass’ and 47% then they will never win another election until after 2020.

  • elw

    The only thing that can save the Republicans:
    1. Opening their minds to the fact that our Country is not dominated by White men who have the right to rule.
    2. Opening their hearts to the fact that they are no better or deserve no more than the poor, disabled and non-Christians.
    3. Remembering that, they cannot win by twisting the truth or trying to control other people’s personal decisions on sex, religion and life sytle.
    4. Remembering that everything today is taped, so you cannot claim to be a moderate this week when you were a radical Conservative last week.
    5. By talking and really listening to people who do not go to their chruch or agree with everything they say.

    I for one do not think they will make the changes they need to. Like most Radicals they are very stuck where they are. The ones who do change will leave the Party for another.

  • ChristoD

    Smart man that Marco. Great quote at the end. Great idea on the immigration reform. SOMEBODY has to do it, why not a Latino ? He LOOKS the part but until all of these REPUGNican pretenders to the next Presidential primary election throne rid themselves of their extreme followers (read: the Tea Party nitwits), they will be toast in the general election.

  • http://mohammeddressup.com/ I Zheet M’Drawz

    The 1st thing they will do to blow the next election is run a candidate.

    Maybe the Republicants ought to try running a candidate in Venezuela, they’d fit in better there not here.

  • RobertCHastings

    I think that “bowing to the rich” should be changed to “blowing the rich”.

  • RobertCHastings

    His smartest movwould be to repackage himself, as a moderate Democrat. If he had the brain he seems to have, he will probably do just that, and, like others of the right who have done so over the past fifteen years or so, he would be accepted into the Democratic party with open arms. My former father-in-law, who passed away last year, had been a lifelong Republican; but over the last five years of his life he changed parties, because, as I have heard from so many others, “this is not the Republican party of our fathers.” And it is not the Republican party of Marco Rubio’s father, either.

  • Bobcat1804

    San Antonio mayor, Julian Castro, would make an excellent choice as Hillary’s VP. His hispanic credibility, education, youth are all appealing. Not to mention, maybe putting Texas into play.

  • rpg1408

    An excellent choice, but the idea of an all-female ticket ,especially of such quality, is exciting.

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