“The Great Bait and Switch”
Why Conservative Reagan Won Two Landslides, and Moderates Always Lose – Cruz vs. Rubio – THE “ELECTABILITY” DEBATE
By Shlomo Pollak
The debate continues: do we stick to our principles, or do we run to the middle?
Since Romney’s shocking defeat, this debate has taken on a new sense of urgency, with the thinking that if Obama was reelected, even Hillary can win this thing?!?
Nobody changed teams, obviously…. The moderates remained moderates, and are “now more then ever”, energized to crush the right wing, that “cost us” an important election….
The conservatives, are equally incredulous, and fear a do-over with another moderate, will net us exactly the same results as last time….
THIS DEBATE ACTUALLY SEEMS TO BE, BETWEEN REASON AND HISTORY!!!
On the one hand, the moderates’ argument seems intuitively correct, and more reasonable. The closer one is to the middle, the more of the electorate he should be able to capture. In a two party system, there is nothing to the right of the GOP candidate, no matter how moderate he is…
But History seems to tell a different story. As Senator Cruz often reminds us, the last Republican to win a landslide, was actually painting IN BOLD COLORS- Reagan. Over and over we nominate a Bob Dole, a Mcain, a Romney, and over and over WE LOSE?!?!
FACTS DON’T LIE, YET IT SEEMS SO COUNTERINTUITIVE….
Many have gone the “energize the base” route, to explain this phenomenon. They claim that, staunch conservatives, not being COMPLETELY represented by the moderate GOP candidate, just stayed home!?!
Personally, after the 2012 debacle, that line of reasoning doesn’t hold water. Any voter that wasn’t 100% committed to stop Obama, with all the lawlessness, and wrong headedness, will certainly find a different excuse not to vote next time around…..
SO WHAT IS THE ANSWER??
My explanation is “THE GREAT BAIT & SWITCH”….
The media, Uber-leftist that they are, consistently root for, and aid, the candidate in any race, that is farther to the left. In the general election, they help the Democrat. In the GOP primary, they help the moderate. Jeb Bush with his embarrassing numbers, still gets more mentions, and is discussed more than Senator Ted Cruz. We consistently hear “here comes Governor Kasich”, as we didn’t stop hearing in 2012, to “watch Jon Huntsman”…
However, when a moderate secures the nomination, the media, IMMEDIATELY, switches sides!! Over night, the media turns from strong advocates for the moderate Republican, to fierce adversaries of the exact same candidate!!
In 2008, the media was falling all over themselves to support John McCain. Once he became the nominee, they we’re openly hostile. That very WEEK, The New York Times ran a full expose on some supposed scandal in the senators past….
The first thing Romney did as the fresh GOP nominee, was to go on that now infamous foreign trip. The Romney camp didn’t know what hit them!! All of a sudden, the drumbeat of media scorn, ridicule, and unfavorable coverage was pointed at THEIR direction. The strong headwind pointed at their opponents in the primary- that was wind in their back to win the nomination…reversed!! It was like someone simply turned around the media fan… Out of the blue, the Romney’s were facing fierce headwinds. THEY DID NOTHING.
Then came the biggest gift in the history of politics, and Romney squandered it! In a culmination of Obama’s many failings, a US ambassador, and three more Americans were killed in Benghazi….TWO MONTHS BEFORE THE ELECTION!! It was chock full with; enormous incompetence, reckless and naive policies, inexplicable chaos, and a transparent cover-up. The Romney camp waited for their chairleaders – the media, to spread the message……crickets. To their horror, the media switched teams, and were actively chairing-on Obama, reporting, and covering the movie….
Don’t worry, we were told, by the debate Romney will “nail Obama on Benghazi”…. How did that work out?! Obama simply said he had agreed all along it was a terrorist attack, the leftist moderator agreed, the media didn’t say a word about the inconsistency, so Romney moved on to “the economy”.
IF YOU LIVE BY THE MEDIA, YOU DIE BY THE MEDIA!!!
The 2008, and 2012 campaigns, of Mcain and Romney, are best remembered, as laid back, reactionary, on the defense, and not at all aggressive. The reason is simple. Their campaigns were BUILT in primaries that the wind / media, was in their back. Additionally, the candidates themselves, have never demonstrated the ability to aggressively, and effectively, go after the left. They never honed that skill, and were certainly not battle tested.
The media props up the moderate, enticing and BAITING conservatives to follow along, only to SWITCH away, and tear the GOP candidate to shreds.
We NEED a candidate AND a campaign that is built for the general!!
Which brings us to 2016, and Ted Cruz vs. Marco Rubio.
The difference in the two campaigns is as clear as day, and publicly reported.
Ted Cruz is tirelessly focusing on organizing and retail campaigning , with intensive mobilizing efforts. The man doesn’t sleep!! In the car, he can’t do a TV interview, so he schedules a radio show. He is building a network which one can build on, and only grows, and expands against Hillary.
Rubio has been relying on favorable news coverage and attention, most of which would virtualy disappear in the big fight.
Ted Cruz, as the the nominee, will be treated no different than he’s been, since he arrived on the scene. Cruz is already scorned, hated, lied about, discounted, and ignored. He is building a formidable campaign, DESPITE the media . The only small differences in the general will be; the media will be forced to ignore him less, and will choose to mock him more.
Twice recently, the Cruz team displayed the skills they have developed and honed over the years in pushing back. Mr. Trump quickly regretted referring to Cruz’s tenure in the senate as “like a maniac”. With humor, class, and talent, they displayed a deep connection with popular culture, turned “I am a maniac” into a source of pride, and even sold “I am a maniac” gear….
When the Cruz family shot a brilliant ad, parodying parents reading Holiday books to their little children, a partisan cartoonist for the Washington Post couldn’t stand that two million people viewed it on YouTube alone. She too surely regrets her cartoon, depicting the girls as monkeys. Her editor yanked the picture, and Cruz & Co. turned this incident into what is now being referred to as a gift!!… raising millions and generating plenty of positive news coverage…
Marco Rubio, on the other hand, is now framed as the sensible, electable, moderate. In a general election he would be caught totally flat-footed. Marco is being propped up, by leftists and moderates in the media, only to collapse like a house of cards, when his supporters begin fawning over Hillary.
For heaven’s sake!! Let’s not do the same thing over and over, and expect different results.