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Jeb to Pyrrhus: Sounds Like a Plan!
Jeb Bush has numerous problems. He is nearly the least likable of all of the Republican presidential candidates, performing almost as poorly as Trump. He polls nearly the worst head to head against his possible democratic opponents, with only Trump fairing as badly. Despite claims to the contrary, Bush’s record and public statements put him to the left of John Kasich; the man who has run on a platform of being marginally ashamed that he is a Republican. Simply put, Jeb Bush will never win the Republican nomination, and could not win the presidency if he did.
The Republican Party also has problems. Chief among them being Donald Trump. A Trump nomination could put a self-described socialist in the White House. Trump’s campaign is sustained by a minority of the electorate which, though dedicated, taps out at no more than a third of the total. He is the second choice of very few voters. If the field were winnowed to two opponents and Trump, his defeat would likely be inevitable. This is the reason that the Republican candidates have largely avoided going after the Donald with their negative advertising and speeches. They don’t see him as a long term threat. And he likely wouldn’t be, if Jeb Bush’s vanity did not insist upon continuing his campaign.
Much has been made of the “lanes” available in the Republican primary. Cruz has locked up the most conservative voters of the base, while Trump appeals to working class whites who have never really felt comfortable in the Republican coalition since having been abandoned by the Democrats. This leaves room for just one more candidate who appeals to moderates, and those who feel that neither Trump nor Cruz has a good chance of defeating their democratic opponent.
Jeb’s plan is to go completely scorched-earth on Kasich and Rubio, not elevating himself, but destroying his last viable competition so that he defaults his way into this third lane. From the ruins, he will now supposedly convince an electorate that hates him that he is the best suited to defeat the Democrats in November, despite ample evidence to the contrary.
Head to head polls this early in the election cycle have no real predictive power, but contain useful information none the less. It is not interesting that Rubio is defeating Clinton in a head to head matchup, as events can change the fundamentals of the election drastically over the next nine months. It is however interesting that Rubio consistently polls better than Cruz against either Clinton or Sanders, and that Cruz polls consistently better than Bush. The electability of each candidate relative to each other is clearly seen, and Jeb Bush is nearly as poor a choice for Republicans who want to win as Donald Trump.
It may be a bit unfair to Jeb that his surname became exceedingly unpopular with both the left and right in the decade since he left office. Yet we are conservatives and properly do not give a crap when entitled politicians feel they are being treated unfairly. Jeb simply cannot win. He will be unable to siphon any support from Trump or Cruz, and those most concerned with victory will be forced to support the Texas senator as he is the most electable of the candidates that would remain.
With no path to victory, what does Jeb’s continued presence in the race accomplish? Little but keeping better options from being able to rise in the third lane, leaving his party more likely to be defeated in November.
It can be difficult at times to understand the minds of men who work so hard and spend so much in the pursuit of power. Though they use much of the same language as the rest of us about working to preserve this nation for their grandchildren, we can see ample evidence that many are as ideologically flexible as their situation in politics allows. The power is the ends, not the means to do good works for the country.
If Jeb was primarily concerned with the future of the United States, and truly and deeply bought into the conservative principles he espouses, he would have dropped by now. What his campaign tells us more than anything else is that Jeb Bush is in the business of advancing the interests of Jeb Bush. His country be damned.Published in General
This is answered in the post. Please read it. If you’d prefer not to, just make that clear so that I may ignore your comments going forward.
Sure. I was combining a couple of points there for expediency. The narcissism part comes from the position of most Trump supporters that they support him because he “listens to me”. Listening to me, seems to be the main sticking point for them.
Not sure where “listening to the voters” is in the job description of a President, however.
The twisting in the wind death of the Rubio campaign is likely to be painful for two weeks. The emotional will shriek, the paranoid will accuse and the analytic will analyze everything but their enduring attachment to a moribund campaign.
I usually opt for option three.
“Poll” last night showed Rubio winning 10% of the vote in a purple state, losing to Kasich and Bush, and not besting Christie by a very impressive margin.
Cruz is the only conservative opponent to Trump over the next month, in a nomination that might not last much longer than a month.
Sure there is a nice moderately conservative lane opening up next month which runs through Florida and Ohio to a three month tour of solid blue states.
Unfortunately Rubio ran himself over three or four times last Saturday night.
Okay. I reread the post.
You are saying that the two thirds of the people voting for other people in the primaries will never vote for Trump even if he is the last man standing.
I doubt that. They may not like Trump for any reason, but when the debates are held between Sanders and Trump, all Trump has to say is that Sanders’ plans will result in a whopping tax increase in every area and those people who do not like Trump today would probably still vote for him.
That’s my guess anyway.
I’m not sure this is exactly true. It seems (and this is purely my own guess here, though polling backs it up) that Trump represents a solid plurality, not a majority. He’s got the largest bloc share, with everyone else chasing all of the other candidates.
Yes, but their parents might be.
This isn’t a good way to respond to comments, Frank. You may have said it in your post, but I’m not convinced, hence, the comment. Accusing someone of “damning his country” because he wants to run for President, is strange, if the logic that he’s unpopular is the only argument you made there.
Replace Bush with Trump in this post, and your same argument holds. But no attack on Trump. Instead, attack on his opponents.
Feel free to ignore my comments. No problem.
Not quite. I am saying Trump loses the Primaries if the field is him, Cruz and one other. If this happens too late in the process, he could win, and the Republicans are screwed as he will be easily defeated in the general election.
I don’t get that read from Frank – more that those 2/3 want someone other than Trump to win the primary.
Right on, Frank. Bush is so deep in the bubble he can’t see that there is virtually no enthusiasm for him as the nominee. He knows he’s smarter than his older brother and GW got elected so surely he can!
He’s also insulted that the junior senator from the state he was governor of for two terms is getting more traction than he is. Bush is in total denial and as a result we are going to have to hope against hope that a first term senator who pisses off everyone with whom he works (Cruz) can beat a blustering clown like Trump.
I would not bet $1 that the GOP is going to win this fall.
And better hair.
Look, AIG, Frank knows that Trump is insane and a total narcissist – there’s no use appealing to him. Plus he’s actually won a primary so why would he drop out?
Trump actually has a shot at the nomination. Bush has none.
You are playing a game at this point. Let me quote you to demonstrate.
I told you this is answered in the post, which it clearly is. You are now saying that you understand this is in the post, but were really asking a different question then the one you articulated.
Your new question isn’t so much a question, as an assertion that the evidence I provided is not convincing. Unfortunately, you provided no counter evidence, so there is really nothing to discuss, now is there?
Okay. Slow on the uptake today. I get it. Everyone consolidates against Trump at the end.
I get it.
That is possible.
This is wrong. Rubio performed well that debate. Actually, if you took out the exchange with Christie, it was maybe his best debate. Had that debate happened a week before the election, rather than two days, I think Rubio could have rebounded. Unfortunately for him a giant chunk of the NH electorate decided in the last few days of the campaign (which totally baffles me. These people have been seeing these guys for months in person and on television. How in the world can you be undecided after being bombarded that long by the sales pitches of all these candidates?). Just when many voters were making up their minds, the media, including the conservative media, churned out an unrelenting, over-the-top, stream of headlines and tv analysis about how horribly Rubio performed, as if the entire debate had ended after the exchange with Christie.
Now the storyline of Rubio having a horrible debate has played out and expectations are lower. If Rubio has his typically good debate performance Saturday, the storyline will become, “Rubio bounces back with great debate performance!” Last Saturday was basically a pick six at the end of the game by Rubio, against other candidates who were weaker and whom he was beating. They got lucky by a bad decision from Rubio, but they’re still weaker candidates. So Rubio should still be able to take them down in the next “game.”
Well, people who feel desperate like to be listened to. Whether their desperation is self-inflicted or not, the impression that someone cares about it can be pretty powerful. I guess one way to put this is that harboring feelings of desperation tends to turn one narcissistic, but I think of it more as simply being human.
I’d agree it’s rather absurd for a voter to get the impression “he listens to me” from a president or candidate, even if it’s also totally human.
Oh man the Rubes are not happy today.
Adding to discussion with name calling again. Charming.
If Rubio beats Bush in the next two contests, he will have beaten Bush three out of four times, with one defeat to Bush that was so narrow that it was in essence a tie. Kasich will not play in the next two contests at all, and if he does, it will come at Bush’s expense I have a feeling. With that type of consistent winning over Bush, the center-right support the two governors and Rubio are vying for will start to coalesce around Rubio.
Rubio needs to do well next Saturday, though, and reassure people who saw his pick six last Saturday and got spooked at his decision making. He needs to show that he is Peyton Manning, not Eli Manning.
I remember reading / hearing somewhere that the only reason Trump was in the race was because Bush was in it. See here.
Assuming that’s true, if Trump wins the nomination because Bush pursues his Pyrrhic strategy, then he is doubly to blame.
The bigger problem with your title is, too many (for my comfort) Trump supporters want to see it (ie, the GOP) all burn down, so Trump supporters are pursuing their own Pyrrhic strategy.
And, the country suffers.
This is where I would respond in kind and say “read my comments”.
All you’re saying here is, since the problem is Trump and his Mussolini-admiring supporters, lets attack the guy who is most diametrically opposed to Trump.
Hence, bringing us back to my point: the GOP strategy seems to be, lets convince our Mussolini-loving “base” to vote for someone less clownish, instead of attacking them for holding self-destructive POVs. Appeasement. Conservatism in a nut-shell, unfortunately.
This will solve absolutely nothing. The Mussolini-loving Trumpians will still be there, and they will be 50% of the “base” in 4 years, rather than 35%.
I find your title offensive. Pyrrhus of Epirus was a far better commander and strategos than Bush will ever be. Comparing the two as if they had the same plan is false. Pyrrhus actually had a plan and was contender in his region. Bush is far better supported than Pyrrhus was and was less respected than Pyrrhus was.
Some people have a hard time believing in that silly thing called “free market” with various individuals trading goods and services freely. Then again America does not have a “free” market but one that is mostly free with some severe intervention here and there.
Said “trumpians” tend to fear that which is different, regardless of what characteristics those are, even if the difference is only skin deep. But I have a feeling that New Hampshire is the last place trump will do well. New Hampshire is moderate, most of the primaries and caucuses in the coming months are in conservative states. We will see how well he fairs there.
Say Mussolini a few more times. I’m not sure we got it.
“Jeb to Pyrrhus: Sounds Like a Plan!”
Frank, I don’t care who ya are, das fuhnny!
Jeb! may actually have some Mommy issues. Someone who dealt with the elder Bushes professionally said that GHW was a delight. For B, however, nothing anyone did was right or good enough. Described the interaction as the worst of her career (pilot). Can you imagine B’s reaction to her son’s humiliating FAIL!
There’s already a political party for those people. Its called the Democratic Party.
How on Earth is that even possibly true? In Iowa Jeb hardly had any support. NH was bound to be Jeb people in there because they are a bunch of Northeastern wimps so beholden to what isn’t threatening that it’s sickening (Kasich winning second? Where but NH will that even happen again?). So the three percent of Jeb supporters in the rest of the 48 states are going to be the tip of the scale that pushes Trump out? Frank, I’m sorry but that just drips of desperation.
I’m sorry, but I am getting a real kick out of all of this. Here we are with the delegate count within ten for Rubio and his supporters are trying to put a match out with a fire hose. This is super comical to me.
Trump: 17 delegates
There is still a lot of football to be played folks. Now go out there and win for your candidate and stop telling the defense to stop playing defense.
Trump lost Iowa. How is this confusing?
I’m pretty sure Frank was saying Trump represents a plurality of the base, not Bush.