Sunday, March 06, 2016

Be Careful What You Wish For, Donald

Former US Representative Joe Scarborough (R-FL) says Marco Rubio should get out for his own good.

Noting Rubio finished no better than third in any of the four primary contests held Saturday, the MSNBC host says the Senator has been

left humiliated again, cornered into betting their candidate’s political future on a first place finish in Florida. That outcome was made more difficult by tonight’s collapse. If there is anyone around Rubio who understands that this campaign is over, they should tell him to go home, announce his run for reelection as a senator, get the voting card out of the glove compartment, and start rebuilding his political reputation right away.

The senator still has time to salvage a political career damaged by his lackluster presidential campaign. But that won’t still be the case if Rubio hangs around this race long enough to be embarrassed by Donald Trump in his home state of Florida.

In a spectacular case of false bravado or self-deception, Donald Trump says of Senator Ted Cruz "bring it on." Once the Saturday results became clear, Trump faced his supporters and claimed "I would love to take on Ted one-on-one. That would be so much fun."

It's not likely to happen any time soon, given it is dependent on both Rubio and Ohio governor John Kasich dropping out.  Rubio is unlikely to withdraw before he's humiliated by (at least) Trump in Florida on March 15, and Kasich surely won't concede after he wins in his own home state that same day.

Trump, though he performed less well than expected Saturday, should consider himself fortunate. When the Republican field was crowded, his was the only voice heard (figurativel) and he prospered. At debate, he stood- literally- tall and his rivals, competing for attention, were unable to lay afirm glove on him. When the field winnowed to four in the face-off in Detroit, Marco Rubio attacked Trump and drew blood, though he practically destroyed himself in the process.  Cruz joined in the fun at strategic points and Kasich self-righteously set himself apart as the adult in the room.

If he is at all self-aware, Donald Trump is bluffing when he suggests that he would like to campaign against, and debate, Ted Cruz mano-a-mano.   The Texas senator would be able to draw a contrast between his realtively consistent, hard-right ideology and Trump's shifting perspective on issues.

Moreover, Senator Cruz was once a law clerk to Chief Justice Rehnquist and twice argued before the United States Surpreme Court.  In one instance, he successfully- and probably unethically- submitted a legal brief citing himself without acknowledging he was the author. Mr. Trump would do well to understand what George Peppard, playing the role of Banacek in the 1970s televison program of the same name, once falsely identified as a Polish proverb: "the truly wise man never plays leapfrog with a unicorn."

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