Somebody we know said last weekend that Bernie Sanders would never become the nominee for the Democrats this presidential election season. Not going to happen. Don't worry about it. If something was to happen to Hillary Clinton, legally, and she decided she had more important things to worry about than the presidency, then the Democratic leadership would go to a brokered convention. Joe Biden and John Kerry would then decide which place to take on The Ticket, and the party would go on from there.
Because Democrats like to win.
They know that an avowed socialist is going to have a rough time in a general election. And Democrats like to win. They'd go to the old standards before the Vermont senator. Because Democrats like to win. The super-delegates and all the other delegates that Hillary Clinton has already lined up would run back to the establishment rather than feel the Bern. Because Democrats like to win.
Republicans, on the other hand, like to send messages. And the message so far this election season has been "You're not the boss of me."
How else explain how a vulgar, insulting, casino-owning friend of the Clintons has won several states in the Republican primary? And with help from evangelicals. The lion's share of Republicans tell pollsters they'll never vote for the man, but in a five-candidate race, 30 percent is good enough for a win state-to-state.
But 30 percent of one party has never, ever been enough to win the presidency. Nominating the vulgarian in the race just because he promises to build a wall on the border and get Mexico to pay for it (that'd be a neat trick) is the most sure track to Hillary Clinton's inauguration address.
Now that the GOP field is getting smaller every week, here's hoping that the party wakes up and rallies behind somebody who can win the general election. And who scares the Democrats more than anybody?
Marco Rubio visited Arkansas earlier this week. We hope he enjoyed the weather. Sure, he's a senator from Florida, but he's spent all that time in Iowa and New Hampshire lately. He must've missed the sun.
During his speech at the Statehouse Convention Center in Little Rock, Senator Rubio didn't mention his competitors. Good for him. His competitors spend too much of their time cutting each other down as it is. But Senator Rubio did say this, and our friend mentioned above would agree:
"I'm as conservative as anyone in this race. But I'm the conservative who can win. And we have to win. This cannot be the election about making a point. This has to be an election about making a difference. Because the stakes are too high."
For proof, see the Supreme Court of the United States and the recent passing of Antonin Scalia. If the Republican Party nominates The Donald, it's a sure bet that Hillary Clinton or another Democrat would replace Justice Scalia on the court. (And any other justice who might retire between now and 2020.) Think of what's at stake there. The nation's highest court has split 5-4 many times over the last decade. Some debates that many of us thought were over--think the Second Amendment and gun rights--might become debates again if liberals take six or more seats on the court. Is that worth sending a message?
That's probably why so many lawmakers and other elected officials in Arkansas have endorsed Marco Rubio. Word came down Monday afternoon that the governor of Arkansas, you know him as Asa, did the same.
It's not just his story that makes Marco Rubio such an attractive candidate--although the story is something. (He's the son of Cuban immigrants who worked hard to give their kids the American Dream.) But his bearing, knowledge of foreign policy, reasoning, and thoughtful manner recommend him. Call it a presidential comportment.
Think about some of the things he said just in Little Rock the other day, and compare it to the other leading campaigns:
Free enterprise "is the only economic system in the world where you can make poor people richer and you don't have to make rich people poorer."
Democrats' "answer to everything is a tax. . . . But big government doesn't work and in fact big government hurts those who are trying to make it."
Not once did he call anybody a loser. Or have to apologize for a dirty campaign trick.
John Kasich has always been a favorite among thinking Republicans--even going back to the 1980s when he was in the Congress and worked with a president named Reagan. And later worked with a president named Clinton to achieve a budget surplus. We remember Congressman Kasich from the Sunday morning talk shows that he regularly appeared on. The man has always been personable and thoughtful from a distance, and familiar with the latest policy details. But the current governor of Ohio doesn't seem to be getting much traction in this send-a-message year among Republicans. That's too bad.
If John Kasich doesn't get a few wins under his belt this coming Super Tuesday, we'd like to see him as the vice presidential nominee. He'd bring some needed experience to the Rubio ticket. (That is, if Kasich doesn't somehow end up surprising everybody. Which would mean an even more formidable Kasich-Rubio ticket come November.)
But it looks as though the best chance to give the Republicans any kind of chance in November comes in the person of Marco Rubio, senator from Florida and shining light. If his party is interested in winning that election, and overturning so many executive orders from the Obama administration, and appointing conservative justices, and generally putting the country on a different track, Senator Rubio is the clear choice, and our choice, for the Republican presidential nomination.
Editorial on 02/26/2016
Print Headline: For Marco Rubio