March 14, 2015

How much can Romney help Rubio?

WaPo reports:
Sen. Marco Rubio has been cultivating a relationship with Mitt Romney and his intimates, landing some of the 2012 Republican nominee’s top advisers and donors and persistently courting others as he readies an expected 2016 presidential campaign.

In a crowded field of contenders, the imprimatur of Romney could help clear Rubio’s path into the top tier. Since Romney announced in January that he would not run for the White House again, he and Rubio have had at least two lengthy phone calls in which Romney encouraged and mentored the 43-year-old Florida senator about the political landscape, according to a Romney associate.

Rubio and Romney have built a warm and trusting rapport, in contrast to the frostiness that exists between Romney and the two current GOP front-runners, former Florida governor Jeb Bush and Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker. When Romney said in January that it was time to turn to the “next generation of Republican leaders,” it was widely interpreted as a swipe at Bush and a boost to a fresher face, such as Rubio.
What's the evidence of frostiness toward Walker?

In one-on-one meetings and communications with members of Romney’s inner circle, Rubio has impressed them with what they see as his compelling personal story, his depth and positions on policies, and his respect for Romney and his legacy in the Republican Party.
I'm going to read between the lines and say that Romney, Bush, and Rubio are/were competing for the moderate position, and Walker's on a different track. But there is this:
Some Romney loyalists...  hold a grudge against Walker for sharply criticizing Romney in his 2013 book, “Unintimidated,” for doing “a lousy job” connecting with voters.
Doesn't Romney concede that? This made me want to check Walker's book to see what he actually said about Romney. Walker uses the word "lousy" twice, the first time about himself...
If my own wife didn’t see why we needed to change collective bargaining, how could I expect the voters of Wisconsin to see it? I was obviously doing a lousy job of explaining our reforms.
... and the second time speaking of Republicans as a group:
In 2012, Republicans did a lousy job of presenting a positive vision of free market solutions to our nation’s problems in a way that is relevant to people’s lives. The problem was not that Republicans ran on principles and failed; it was that Republicans failed to run on our principles.
But what exactly did Walker say about Romney? I'll tell you. All the quotes that follow are from Walker's book "Unintimidated." Romney, according to Walker, is "a decent and compassionate man," but he "allowed himself to be portrayed as a defender of the rich and powerful instead of a champion of the poor and vulnerable." Walker thinks that his experience in Wisconsin shows that "Americans want leadership":
And in times of crisis, they don’t care if it is Democratic leadership or Republican leadership— they will stand with those who offer bold ideas and have the courage to take on the tough issues.

But instead of offering a big, positive vision for the future, Romney was working to make the campaign a referendum on President Obama. His campaign was trying to model itself on the 1980 Reagan campaign, and the devastating question Reagan asked Americans at the end of his debate with President Carter, just days before the election: “Are you better off than you were four years ago?”

The problem was, the Romney team got the 1980 Reagan campaign all wrong. “Are you better off than you were four years ago?” was Reagan’s closing argument, not his entire argument. Reagan did not make the election simply a referendum on Jimmy Carter. He also explained why voters would be better off in four years’ time under his leadership. He put forward a positive, hopeful vision of a different future for America— an optimistic vision that attracted not only diehard Republicans but independents and “Reagan Democrats” as well. Reagan didn’t just say what he was against; he said what he was for....

Reagan did not dismiss 47 percent of the country as a bunch of moochers. Quite the opposite: At the Republican convention in Detroit he appealed to those who wanted nothing more than to get off government assistance and find work. He promised that “for those without skills, we’ll find a way to help them get skills. For those without job opportunities, we’ll stimulate new opportunities, particularly in the inner cities where they live. For those who have abandoned hope, we’ll restore hope and we’ll welcome them into a great national crusade to make America great again.”

“We have to move ahead,” Reagan said, “but we’re not going to leave anyone behind.”

That is the Reagan message Romney should have emulated....

Instead of scolding them, Romney should have championed them. Instead of saying he could “never convince them that they should take personal responsibility and care for their lives,” Romney should have offered a bold vision for how he would help them become independent again through the dignity of work. Instead of trying to convince them that Barack Obama was responsible for their plight, he should have laid out a vision for how he would help improve their circumstances.

Ronald Reagan would never have said, “I’m not concerned about the very poor.” Romney later said his comments were taken out of context, but the context actually made them worse. Romney had gone on to say, “We have a very ample safety net, and we can talk about whether it needs to be strengthened or whether there are holes in it. But we have food stamps, we have Medicaid, we have housing vouchers, we have programs to help the poor.”

That was the wrong message for the 2.6 million Americans who had slipped beneath the poverty line in 2010–11, and the millions more who feared they were just a couple of paychecks away from falling under that line themselves. They were not looking for Mitt Romney to strengthen the safety net; they wanted to hear how he was going to help them escape the safety net. They were desperate to find good jobs, get off government assistance, and work their way out of poverty and up into the middle class. Romney never offered a hopeful and optimistic vision of how he would help them get there. Instead of consigning them to the permanent welfare state, he should have explained how he would help the poor not be poor anymore....
Walker gives us the text of an email he sent to Romney — to which Romney never responded — offering advice. Among other things, Romney needed to "show more passion." He should "Grab the mike and get out from behind a podium and talk directly to voters." Walker continues:
Romney should have used the success of Republican governors as a tool against President Obama. He could have said: If you want proof that Obama’s approach is failing while Republican ideas are succeeding, just look at the states. In states where our ideas are being tried, we see balanced budgets, jobs being created, and economies that are finally turning a corner.... Instead of using the success of Republican chief executives to show why we needed a Republican chief executive in the White House, he campaigned in Iowa, Ohio, Florida, Virginia, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin (key swing states with Republican governors) by telling voters how bad things were. He was so focused on explaining why President Obama should be fired, but never explained why he should be hired.

If he had shown voters he had a bold, reform agenda and a positive, optimistic plan for America, it would have been appealing not only to Republicans but also Democrats and independents.... That’s what Reagan did but Romney failed to do. Just as the Romney campaign misread the reasons for the success of Reagan’s campaign, today many in Washington are misreading the reasons for the failure of the Romney campaign. They argue that the lesson of 2012 is that Romney tacked too far to the right, and that Republicans have to “moderate” their views if they want to appeal to a country that is increasingly moving center-left.

With all due respect, that’s just baloney. Our principles are not the problem. If our principles were the problem, then why are so many Republican governors winning elections by campaigning on those very principles?...

In 2012, Republicans did a lousy job of presenting a positive vision of free market solutions to our nation’s problems in a way that is relevant to people’s lives. The problem was not that Republicans ran on principles and failed; it was that Republicans failed to run on our principles.
What this material from "Unintimidated" shows is not so much that Walker was too mean to Romney — that he was "sharply criticizing" — but that Walker runs on the conservative track that Romney (like McCain) avoided. The Romney donors and supporters need somewhere to go for 2016, and Rubio might be their man. It's obvious that Walker is not.


MadisonMan said...

Rubio has a huge nigh-on-insurmountable problem for a voter like me: He's a sitting Senator.

Unknown said...

Walker is right about Romney...and most Republicans still don't get it.

iowan2 said...

Rubio suffers the same non-existant resume as Obama.

Can Of Cheese for Hunter said...

Rubio v. Hillary.
That would be delicious..
Rubio is a fantastic speaker. He’s young, smart, attractive, and likeable. Hillary is none of those things.

Rubio needs to be more like Walker and less like Romney.

So then, why not just go with Walker?

Notice the collective left are bringing up Reagan a lot in their conversations these days? No coincidence. They see Walker connecting with voters like Reagan did. This terrifies them- so Reagan bashing is back.

Roger Sweeny said...

This makes me think less of Walker.

[Reagan] promised that “for those without skills, we’ll find a way to help them get skills. For those without job opportunities, we’ll stimulate new opportunities, particularly in the inner cities where they live. For those who have abandoned hope, we’ll restore hope ..."

But he couldn't. He didn't. At least for the first two. No politician really has that power, though we like to think they do, and they like to feed our delusion. As to "hope," well, we've had six and a half recent years of "hope and change."

The same with the rhetoric about "jobs being created, and economies that are finally turning a corner" because of Republican governors and Republican policy. State governments can't do much to affect the local economy in the short run. This is another one of those pretty pretend things that politicians say.

It's a very tough thing in politics to be positive without lying. Walker fails here.

traditionalguy said...

Walker is a sweet, mild man who is a vicious fighter determined to use whatever weapons he needs to win.

The only reaction the Wisconsin Dems have shown to Walker is a stunned and resentful surprise at being beaten so badly by this dude.

The question for Walker is going to become whether he can be forgiven for running up the score on badly beaten opponents while he smiles at how easy it is.

dreams said...

"Rubio v. Hillary."

Other than getting elected, name one thing either one has accomplished.

Tank said...

Rubio and Walker, in either configuration, seems a whole lot better than the last two Rep tickets.

Problem: Neither can be trusted on the amnesty question.

How is Rubio more of a moderate than a conservative? What is immoderate about being conservative?

Wince said...

Walker is right. Romney's campaign botched the message.

Rubio now is at best Robbin to somebody else's Batman. He should compete for the VP spot and not attack fellow Republicans.

traditionalguy said...

Walker's best jugular slash at J.E.B. was that Walker's success does not depend on the called in favors due to his Father and Brother from their 20 years of giving out favors among wealthy donors when they were President and VP in the old days.

He's running up the score.

clint said...

I'll believe the left is scared of Walker when the press starts to hammer on his lack of a college degree.

I suspect that the left is secretly hoping Walker is our candidate, because they not-so-secretly believe that the lack of a diploma is a deal-breaker. Credentialism is one of the central tenets of the leftist political creed, but it will be interesting to see how that plays out with swing voters.

Similarly, I'll believe the left has a candidate when the press starts to mention Clinton's health issues.

Michael K said...

"No politician really has that power, though we like to think they do, and they like to feed our delusion. "

So, the boom in the economy after Reagan cut taxes and regulation (such as ending gas price control ?) didn't mean more jobs ?

Clinton has been living off the Reagan boom for the least 20 years. Bob Dole managed to delay the rally by delaying the tax cuts and that lost the Senate in 1982. Dole made it more difficult for Reagan but that what "root canal Republicans " did for all of us.

You sound like a concern troll.

Brando said...

It'll be nice if for once the Republicans can get through primary season (which is now apparently two years long) without so crippling each other that they're too bloodied to fight the Democrats.

Fandor said...

I think Walker's anaylasis is on the mark.
I also believe the Republican apparatus, that part not under the direct control of the Romney team, failed him in the final weeks of the campaign.
Not enough doors were knocked on, nobody checked the voter lists in their districts on election day to get the vote out, or took the time to cajole those who wanted to sit on their hands because they thought Romney wasn't conservatve enough, or were put off by his Mormonism.
All things considered, it's an election that should not have been lost.
Governor Romney did campaign hard and won over the independent vote. Had it been the 1980 election, he would have taken the White House by a larger margin than President Reagan did.
No, it was the conservatives who did Mitt in by staying home. And because they did, we have to endure a feckless Democrat administration until 2017 (unless, God forbid, another team of Democrats is elected in 2016).
The next president is going to have a lot on his plate. He's going to have to be someone with a strong appetite for trouble and more than capable of handling it.
I don't think there is any bad blood between Romney and Walker. Mitt will work just as hard for Walker or Rubio (or Bush or whoever) becomes the party's nominee.
But, in the best of all possible worlds. I think Mitt Romney would work hardest for himself and get elected this time around.
Romney in 2016.
Believe in America!

Danno said...

Rubio should come back in 10 years and maybe then he will have more accomplishments showing on his resume.

Also, speaking of 10 years, every picture of Hillary lately makes her look 10 years older than the last picture I saw.

Roger Sweeny said...

Michael K, I agree that the economy boomed after "Reagan cut taxes and regulation (such as ending gas price control ?)." Those actions were part of the reason.

However, I was complaining about "for those without skills, we’ll find a way to help them get skills. For those without job opportunities, we’ll stimulate new opportunities, particularly in the inner cities where they live." That didn't happen. A booming economy did create more jobs, but not terribly many "in the inner cities where they live."

Simon said...

Somehow I don't think that the base is sitting around awaiting, breath baited, to learn whom Mitt Romney favors.

Mick said...

Rubio is not eligible, since he was born to legal resident alien parents in Miami rather than US Citizen parents. At the time (1974) his parents were in the US for 15 years and had failed to naturalize.

Rubio was born with allegiance to both Cuba and the US and cannot be counted on, if he were the POTUS, to objectively deal with Cuba/ US relations.

Rubio was NATURALIZED by 8 US Code 1401(1) at birth, by statute, according to the holding of Wong Kim Ark @ 693, that the children of resident aliens would be naturalized at birth, since they were born, in the meaning of the 14th Amendment, "subject to the jurisdiction of the US", by birth to legal resident aliens, whose legal habitation creates allegiance , as long as that residence exists.

Rubio got his citizenship by statute according to the 14th Amendment, as such he is naturalized.

Natural born Citizens get citizenship naturally through A2S1C5, naturalized citizens get citizenship via the 14th Amendment. (See Schneider v. Rusk, and Hassan v. FEC recently).

Of course a "Con Law Prof" should know this, and maybe even blog about this constitutional issue. However she apparently is scared of the "Birther" label, and what it may mean to her standing in the Ivory Tower of Intelligista Academia.

The requirement is natural born Citizen, not "citizen at birth", which could describe a naturalized citizen.

As for Rubio, he is a fraud, protecting the Usurper Obama.

bbkingfish said...

Sounds like a Walker Administration would be a seance dedicated to channeling the spirit of Ronnie.

Also, I see that Scotty thinks Tom Cotton's letter is just peachy.

Both weird, and doltish. What a package.

Simon said...

As I said here, I'm done engaging with Mick, but let me answer concerns about Rubio's eligibility for the rest of you.

The original understanding of the constitutional term "natural-born" citizen would draw its content from the parallel meaning of a natural-born subject under the law of England. See, e.g., District of Columbia v. Heller, 554 U.S. 570, 576-77 (2008). When we want to know what the law of England was, we turn to Blackstone. See United States v. Wood, 299 U.S. 123, 138 (1936); Schick v. United States, 195 U.S. 65, 69 (1904); Rogers v. Tennessee, 532 U.S. 451, 477 (2001) (Scalia, J., dissenting). Blackstone explains straightforwardly that in the mine-run of cases, a subject who was "natural-born" was one born to English parents "within the dominions of the crown of England." 1 William Blackstone, Commentaries on the Law of England 354, 361 (1765). Nevertheless, Blackstone adds, even the children of foreign parents, "born here in England, are, generally speaking, natural-born subjects, and entitled to all the privileges of such. In which the constitution of France differs from ours; for there, by their jus albinatus, if a child be born of foreign parents, it is an alien." Id.

(In certain cases, Blackstone confirms, the children of English parents, born outside of England, could be natural-born subjects if the parents were outside the realm on the King's errand, such as on ambassadorial or military service. That is why John McCain, for example, is a natural-born citizen regardless of the status of the PCZ.)

Rubio, in Blackstone's words a "child[] of aliens, born here in [America], … [is a] natural-born subject[], and [is] entitled to all the privileges of such." (Invocation of the Fourteenth Amendment is neither necessary nor apt; its provisions postdate the framing by nearly a century and are not relevant to the original meaning of Article II.) There is a serious question that hangs over Cruz's eligibility, Mick is right about that (although not for the right reasons), but Rubio is fine.

Bay Area Guy said...

Romney, Rubio, Walker - all good men, all good public servants.

The question to Conservative voters is: are you emotionally more comfortable with Hillary as president and able to criticize at will or with Jeb Bush as President?

Brando said...

Rubio ought to sit this one out and get reelected to the Senate--that seat is crucial, and his odds aren't looking good for next year. It could change--several months out, no one would have predicted McCain and Obama getting their party's nods--but barring any shift soon this is a pointless endeavor for a guy who is young enough to keep his powder dry and take another shot later, when he's got a bigger base of support.

Mick said...

@ Simon,

Yes you are done conversing with me because your "proof" is not on point.

"Citizens" are not "Subjects", that's why "subjects" was crossed out of the original draft and replaced by "Citizens.

Natural born Citizen is a term of art of the Original Common Law of the United States--- which is law of nations (See Alvarez v. Sosa and Kiobel v. British Petroleum recently, especially Sosa quoting The Nereid, that upon its founding the new United States received the law of nations).

Lwa of nations directly defines natural born Citizen-- there need be no extrapolation of Blackstone's natural born subject to mean natural born Citizen.

Further, SCOTUS has defined natural born Citizen the same as law of nations many times, and never any other way, as one born in a country to parents who are its citizens (See Minor v. Happersett, 88 US 162, 167 (1874), see also The Venus, and see also Wong Kim Ark).

NOT ONE SCOTUS case defines natural born Citizen as a natural born Subject per Blackstone. So of course you are wrong.

British Common Law is only in effect when it does not conflict with the US Constitution.

The very well known reason for the nbC requirement is PREVENTION of foreign influence, so it is IMPOSSIBLE that one born of foreign parentage is eligible.

You can't argue with me because you are wrong.

Michael K said...

"I see that Scotty thinks Tom Cotton's letter is just peachy."

It was. Next question.

The Godfather said...

@Althouse, thanks for the extended quotation from Walker's book. I supported him already, but you've given me more reasons to feel happy with my choice.

Walker has two major handicaps: He didn't graduate from college, and he's balding. My first favorite president was Ike, who was famously bald, and my favorite Democrat president (of the 20th century) was Truman who (I think) didn't graduate from college -- correct me if I'm wrong. Walker must NEVER apologize or show any insecurity about who he is, and I don't think he will.

I like Rubio, but he clearly needs seasoning. He's not my first choice for VP. I hate to say it, but a qualified woman on the Walker ticket would be a plus. However, Walker is not in as desperate a situation as McCain was, if you get my meaning.

machine said...

He could write a letter to Tehran on his behalf...

Drago said...

bbkingfish: "Sounds like a Walker Administration would be a seance dedicated to channeling the spirit of Ronnie."


How about a REAL seance between Hillary and Eleanor Roosevelt?

You did remember that prior to your make-believe snark, didn't you bbkingfish?

bbkingfish:Also, I see that Scotty thinks Tom Cotton's letter is just peachy. Both weird, and doltish. What a package."

Lets see, shall we?

doltish: adjective
(of a person) stupid; idiotic

Tom Cotton: Harvard, Magna Cum Laude with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Government
Harvard Law School, J.D. degree

US Army: attended Army Airborne School and Ranger School

"As an infantry officer and platoon leader with the 101st Airborne Division, he was deployed to Baghdad as part of Operation Iraqi Freedom on May 19, 2006. In Iraq, Cotton was responsible for a 41 man air assault infantry platoon in the 506th Infantry Regiment,[8] and planned and led daily combat patrols. He completed his first combat tour in Iraq on November 20, 2006, and was awarded the Army Commendation Medal, the Combat Infantryman Badge, the Iraq Campaign Medal, and various campaign/service medals."

"In Afghanistan, Cotton was assigned to Laghman Province, just north of Tora Bora in eastern Afghanistan. He was assigned duty as the operations officer of a Provincial Reconstruction Team, where he planned and resourced daily counter-insurgency and reconstruction operations for an 83-member joint and interagency team.[3] He returned from Afghanistan on July 20, 2009. For his second tour in Afghanistan he was awarded the Bronze Star Medal and various campaign/service medals. He was honorably discharged from the U.S. Army on September 26, 2009 at Fort Myer, Virginia."

"He served as a clerk at the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit for Judge Jerry Edwin Smith and then engaged in private practice[12] as an attorney with the law firms Gibson Dunn & Crutcher and Cooper & Kirk, where he concentrated in labor, employment, and constitutional law, in cases at all levels of state and federal courts. After leaving active duty, Cotton joined McKinsey & Company, a management consulting firm. He subsequently returned to Dardanelle, where he works on his family's cattle farm."

Yes bbkingfish, there is someone acting doltishly, but it isn't Sen Cotton.

Drago said...

machine: "He could write a letter to Tehran on his behalf..."

He could use the same template Teddy Kennedy did when Teddy wrote to ask for coordination from the Soviet leaders to defeat Reagan in the '84 election.

But hey, we already know that soliciting the assistance of Soviet leaders to help bring about the downfall of a US President by a sitting US Senator is hardly going to frowned upon by the lefties.

Now, if any republican dares simply quote the US constitution and law to a foreign leader, well, that's clearly beyond the pale.

Roger Sweeny said...

Achilles bring up an interesting point. "Scholar-athletes" keep their scholarships only as long as they're on the team. If they decide that all the travel and practicing and time in the weight room is making it impossible to get a good education, well, they're out of luck.

bbkingfish said...

Rubio needs help finding a job. Maybe Mitt can give him a spot with Bain. Marco may have a talent for busting up companies.

RPW100 said...

I am surprised no one has made the connection that Rubio was raised as a Mormon for part of his childhood. I think this creates a natural connection between Rubio and Romney. I think people underestimate how important Romney's faith is to him and I believe that is one reason he considered running again. I suspect the church leaders were pushing him hard as their best chance ever. But if Rubio were to become President, he would be the first President to have had part of his life as a Mormon. I think that would be huge for the Mormons.