Last night’s Republican debate featured a bit where Marco Rubio fell apart in front of millions of viewers. Chris Christie took a few shots at Rubio, claiming being a senator doesn’t qualify you to be President the way being a governor does. Naturally, Rubio repeats himself and gets called out pretty hard. Watch below:
Will this hurt Rubio? Eh. It should be expected that he’d get attacked more frequently due to his somewhat unexpected performance in Iowa considering that Cruz really has no chance of becoming the nominee (as we’ve seen with the recent history of Iowa Caucus winners, and because he’s an all-around sleaze) and that the likes of Christie, Bush, and Kasich are scrambling for any establishment support they can muster.
I’m not convinced this is going to crush Rubio’s chances the way everybody and their mother seems to think so, and it’s not like he’s been rocking the New Hampshire polls in recent days, mostly because I don’t see how repetition diminishes the effect of what he’s saying. Yes, he looked like a complete fool when he repeated the same line three times (as if he were looking into a mirror trying to summon the ghost of Reagan), but I think this dinged him because there’s already a perception that Rubio comes off as robotic and scripted, not because he actually repeats himself any more than any other candidate. Look at how Kasich goes on and on about a balanced budget, or how Fiorina can’t let Planned Parenthood fantasies go. Or how any of them accuse the others of saying nice things in the past and now, because they’re all running for the same slot, have started saying nasty things about each other. It’s the way these things go; repetition is part of the game. Marco Rubio knows what he’s doing. It’s certainly worked well for Trump.
I’d love to see nothing less than Rubio go down in flames, mostly because I think he’s the only establishmentarian with any real chance right now of gaining the nomination, and that him getting the Republican nod could very well mean a Democratic defeat in November. So while I don’t think this will seriously affect his numbers, it’d be great if the establishment candidates caused more rifts among themselves and further confused the party faithfuls into continuously splitting the vote.