Let's Stop Burying or Anointing Presidential Candidates, It's Only 2013
Around the State
It's amazing how many times in the last month one savant or another has written it's time to stick a fork in Marco Rubio's presidential aspirations.
Ridiculous at this point. Absurd.
All because of what? His stance on immigration? His polling numbers? The only thing they mean in December 2013 is where the Miami Republican stands at this moment.
Yet, I'm reading --
On RedState.com: "Marco Rubio commits hari-kari and buries his presidential chances;"
On Salon.com: "Abandoning his own immigration bill, (Rubio) hopes to take McCain/Romney flip-flop path to the nomination. It won't work. ... He will lose."
On TheGuardian.com: "Marco Rubio for 2016? Five reasons I wouldn't bet on it."
Look, I'm not saying this because I'm a Rubio backer. My mind is wide open and I hope the majority of Americans feel the same way. I am crazy-nuts-hooked on the hoopla of election season's main event. What I don't like is writing off the thrill of a winding, anything's-possible campaign trail to some half-baked prediction based on the issue du jour. It's like saying the Seattle Seahawks will go to the Super Bowl in 2016 because they're 11-1 in their division this minute; and the Houston Texans, now 2-10 in their division, will be the worst team in football in 2016. It could happen, but would you really take that bet?
As dead as pundits and reporters want to make Rubio, they're working harder to hand the keys to the GOP kingdom to New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, and the key to the Oval Office to Hillary Clinton.
Has either actually confirmed he or she is running? Hinted, maybe, but that's it.
Chris Christie has done some great things so far -- passionately engaging with the media, for one, and that gets the kingdom keys jingling. Plus, a CNN/ORC International poll released Friday finds Christie leading the GOP pack with 24 percent, followed by Kentucky U.S. Sen. Rand Paul with 13 percent. Know what Christie told the Huffington Post? He said, "It's December of 2013. It's completely meaningless." Right on, Chris.
As for Hillary, she's running ahead of everybody right now. Way ahead. But she would be the first to tell you there's no sure thing. She has her enemies, old enemies, even among independents. She also has Benghazi -- and other actions while serving as Barack Obama's secretary of state. Add to that the rub-offs from the current administration -- the Obamacare debacle in particular, which is a long way from played out.
As Jonathan Bernstein wrote in The American Prospect, "There’s plenty of time to let the process play out without everyone feeling obligated to predict the outcome every few hours."
Why not just enjoy the ride?
Making predictions is fun, and there's a time and tone to make them in the early campaign going. You'll probably catch me engaging in a little fortune telling in Sunshine State News around New Year's Eve. But if I start to take myself seriously with any of it, feel free to slam away, I'll deserve it.
Reach Nancy Smith at firstname.lastname@example.org or at 228-282-2423.