What I find hilarious about this is that it puts the lie to the narrative that a lot of conservatives (including a few I really respect, like Daniel Larison) are pushing about this election: that Charlie Crist is a soulless and unprincipled hack, while Marco Rubio is a charismatic politician of conviction. If anything, something like the opposite appears to be true. Crist's sin was to run for governor as an independent. Why is he doing this? Because the GOP aggressively recruited him to run for Senate, and then abandoned him when someone who better suited their ideological predilections came along. He obviously supported the stimulus, but this was hardly a policy defection since governors either supporting or denouncing the stimulus was purely for show. They all took the money in the end, and the entire episode was little more than posturing, much like the GOP's health care lawsuits. Crist was courted as long as he was convenient to Republicans and then dumped when that was no longer the case. Republicans might well tout Crist's defection as some sort of double-cross, but you can certainly make an argument that it was entirely just, and that the GOP got what was coming to them when they used Crist in the way they did.
But Rubio's stance here is pretty craven. He has no GOP opposition in his primary. How much support would he really lose by opposing the Arizona bill? Is he going to lose right-wingers to Crist or Ken Meek? My guess is that Rubio is thinking further down the line to a presidential campaign, but this would be like an African-American politician in the South during the 1950's opposing desegregation to try to appeal to racist whites. Okay, perhaps that comparison is too strong, but I don't think it's that far off. Talk about soulless.
The Man, The Myth, The Bio
- East Bay, California, United States
- Problem: I have lots of opinions on politics and culture that I need to vent. If I do not do this I will wind up muttering to myself, and that's only like one or two steps away from being a hobo. Solution: I write two blogs. A political blog that has some evident sympathies (pro-Obama, mostly liberal though I dissent on some issues, like guns and trade) and a culture blog that does, well, cultural essays in a more long-form manner. My particular thing is taking overrated things (movies, mostly, but other things too) down a peg and putting underrated things up a peg. I'm sort of the court of last resort, and I tend to focus on more obscure cultural phenomena.