Dateline: McKelvie Intermediate School, Bedford NH, 12pm EST...
Do ALL Marco Rubio's events start a solid hour late? I am serious when I say that Granite State GOP auds prefer promptitude when getting their arses kissed.
This was a bigger crowd than I'd seen before and younger overall as well, but that is simply the last seventy two hours of the New Hampshire Primary the casual voters start checking out whats on offer. John Kerry's crowds skewed lower in NH once he carried Iowa in 2004, its just the way the primary works up there.
But believe the hype, Marco Rubio is as glib and slick as they come, of the four GOP candidates I saw up in New Hampshire he is the best public speaker hands down. Of course the baseline is Jeb Bush in that cohort so take that with a grain of salt.
Rubio is also a profoundly rigid politician without a single creative notion rattling around in that handsome noggin, his whole program was seemingly downloaded from Jeb Bush's website cut down to two pages and insolently shoved out there under the Senator from Florida's name.
Despite his humble origins, Rubio exudes an irritating pro-wrestler's air of sheer ugly entitlement, it comes of wasting one's entire life public and private cowering in the conservative echo chamber.
It is therefore an act of sick intellectual desperation to somehow assign "mainstream conservative" props to such a profoundly limited and cynical man. But that is the sinkhole into which movement conservatism has plunged, their last hope in the face of uncontrollable reactionary populist revolt is a grimly selfish third tier jobber.
No wonder Jeb Bush is tearing out his hair in utter bafflement this kid has completely eaten his lunch with an evil little leer as well.
Its interesting to me that when Rubio finally did take the stage he was introduced by some giddy locals, no name NH politicians active or retired, it doesn't really mean anything save that either his campaign isn't interested in endorsements or simply has not had any on offer. Usually a few local names get attached to a campaign...here none.
This where things got a little weird I actually heard grown adults announce that as the parents of small children "national security is at the center of our concerns".
I mean screw clean water, good schools or safe playgrounds....
BTW Rubio clearly pulled his kids out of school to work the New Hampshire Primary...cynical no?
And then off he went promising the exact same shit that Christie, Bush and Kasich (and no doubt the rest of them as well) put down at their events, total repeal of Obamacare, trash common core, revoke all executive orders signed by the President, 700 miles of fences & walls on the southern border, pulling out of the Iran Nuclear Deal, Putting Russia, China & North Korea in their places, a missile shield (a-gain), a tax cut & the usually blank check to a Pentagon that Rubio promises to denude of paper pushing bureaucrats.
Don't worry Rubio wants to end sanctuary cities, abolish the Department of Education, appoint Supreme Court Justices as rigid as Antonin Scalia and repeal the 2008 & 2012 elections in general...in case you were worried or anything.
His two most cynical promises involve a solemn pledge not to cut benefits to current retirees although his plan to save social security apparently involves making baby boomer work longer for few benefits & a bizarre promise to modernize our nuclear deterrent (something Obama is already spending close to a trillion dollars to accomplish). And then there is Marco Rubio's plan to destroy Isis ("the most successful Jihadist Group Ever") which involves arming local proxies and conducting an intensified air campaign against the Caliphate.....in other words OBAMA'S PLAN the one that has reduced Isis territory by 40% in one year per the Sunday Globe.
Trust me when I say that IF Marco Rubio had a single original or new idea, it'd die a swift lonely death indeed.
And then the peroration, which is usually the most intellectually corrupt part of these GOP town hall events, Rubio promised a new era of comity and bipartisanship as soon as the republican party controls all three branches of the Government and an all powerful majority, this is where the Senator lurches into bizarrely utopian....its just the same goddamn utopia the other eight are promising. None of it can ever be realized and from the tight little smirk on Rubio's face, he knows it best of all.
Overall Rubio is a pretty glib customer although as time passes you get a definite whiny bratty vibe from him, he clearly doesn't take no for an answer....ever. His program is a stitched up fandango of everyone else's best applause lines, he took remarkably few questions from the audience (all of four all of them unremarkable, he was asked about the national debt from a tyke and Rubio simply repeated his social security meme, not one word about balancing the budget) and acted in all like someone about to ascend to Heaven on the basis of a third place showing in the Iowa Caucuses.
He claims that Hilary Clinton is "scared of him" perhaps so if there is something inherently scary about feckless young jobbers on the prowl.
About his very limited and shopworn notions Rubio is....well briefed, but that merely underscores the irony of yet another feckless empty suit is advertised as the GOP's last best hope to save The Universe.
In sum, Marco Rubio gives off that intangible of an insolent young MBA hired by your boss to clean out the deadwood in your office, soon enough he'll be in your cubicle with a stopwatch in his hand grinning that he wants to see "how fast" you work.....