Senator Rubio's advantage: Sincerity.

Sen. Marco Rubio (R - FL)

Sen. Marco Rubio (R - FL)

Two candidates announced their campaigns for president the last two days, one was an experienced former First Lady, Senator and Secretary of State who has run for president before. The other was another first term senator. Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton made official what has been painfully obvious for quite some time: she's running for president again. Meanwhile, Senator Marco Rubio launched his first bid and the contrast goes beyond their experience. 

Young and old

Male and Female

Latino and White

Policy heavy and Policy light. 

But I would argue there's another contrast at play here between these two candidates: sincere and insincere. Hillary's announcement sounded like a bunch of her advisors got together, took some of Obama's greatest hits and mixed them with some rhetoric more familiar from Elizabeth Warren and gave it to Hillary a few minutes before to read off a computer screen: “Everyday Americans need a champion. And I want to be that champion,” she says unconvincingly in her announcement video. Washington Post's Ruth Marcus called the video "insultingly vapid"  she continues in the text saying it's "a Verizon commercial without the substance." 

Hillary for America 2016 Announcement Video

Meanwhile on Monday, Senator Marco Rubio made a passionate pitch to voters about the future of America, assuring potential voters "Just yesterday, a leader from yesterday began a campaign for president by promising to take us back to yesterday, Yesterday is over, And we’re never going back." He proceeded to go over some of his policy proposals and if you go to his website, you can see everything he's written on some of the particular issues facing our country. 

This is going to be a powerful asset for Sen. Rubio and it's why I believe even though he's currently polling in the single digit, he is going to be a top contender for the Republican nomination. His policies don't alienate the right or the establishment. He's someone both groups could conceivably get behind. His candidacy would give the Republicans an opportunity to make history: electing the first Hispanic president (to be fair, Ted Cruz would also be the first Hispanic president.) But above all of that, Rubio's got something that will be extra potent in early primary states: he is 100% sincere. He believes everything he is saying in his speech. And that can go a long way when you're connecting with voters doing the hard yards in smaller settings, high school, gyms and living rooms in Iowa. 

Posted on April 14, 2015 .

Scattershot: Experience is Overrated.

So, Sen. Ted Cruz made it official today with a brilliant speech (I'll cover it more later) at Liberty University in Virigina designed to be a big pitch for Evangelical Christians.

The response has been widely what you would expect from the left: cries of extremism, the "they want a government small enough to fit in my bedroom or uterus" argument, questions about his intellegence (although it should be noted, Senator Cruz gave his entire speech in complete sentences without a Teleprompter nearly flawlessly)

But one response stood out to me more than others: Ted Cruz needs more experience before running for President. They say we through out the accusation that Obama didn't have enough experience, so why are we supportive of Cruz.

That was an argument made by the McCain and Romney camps who refused to attack Obama's liberalism for whatever reason (it may have been that they secretly liked some of it), it's not an argument that I agree with.

President Obama's problem isn't his experience; it's his ideology. He is committed to statist leftism. That would not have changed if he was a two term governor or a one term senator. Joe Biden and Hillary Clinton have a lot of experience, but they have the wrong ideology, which disqualifies them in my mind.

Now, in comparing GOP conservative candidates, yes, that does make a little bit of a difference, especially when they have conservative achievements. It's why I like Scott Walker just a little better than Ted Cruz. But a lack of experience does not disqualify the Senator In my mind.

Posted on March 24, 2015 .

Ted Cruz

Cruz will reportedly be the first candidate on either side of the isle to officially jump into the 2016 Presidential Race next week. How will he fair? Better than you probably think. 

Well, it's Sunday morning, so I guess now is as good a time as ever to talk domestic politics. 

From CNN: 

"Ted Cruz is first out the gate. 

The first-term senator from Texas will announce that he's running for the Republican presidential nomination, according to the Houston Chronicle. He will make his official declaration Monday in Lynchburg, Virginia at Liberty University, the largest Christian university in the world.

Cruz, 44, will be the first candidate to formally throw his hat in the ring for what's expected to be a crowded GOP primary, with more than a dozen high-profile Republicans expressing serious interest in a White House run. 

The Chronicle reports that Cruz will go straight to announcing his candidacy without first forming an exploratory committee, according to advisers with direct knowledge of his plans."

So, it looks like Senator Ted Cruz will be the first candidate on either side of the isle to formally announce his candidacy for the Presidency in 2016. 

The first term senator looks to follow the path of President Obama, who had as many years under his belt when he announced his presidential bid. Cruz also has a similar profile to Obama: he's young (he was born in 1970), he's a minority, he has an Ivy league background and he also appeals to the base of his party. 

Ted Cruz is, currently, not my guy. I like Walker and Rubio better because while they are committed conservatives, they're able to project a positivity naturally that Cruz has to work hard at (Cruz has a more serious personality.) But let's touch briefly on things that will work for Cruz:

His conservatism: Just like being a liberal in a Democrat primary is a very helpful thing, being a conservative in the Republican primary is a very helpful thing. Cruz has the ability to rally the base and he's unafraid to deliver the red meat the base is desperate to hear from it's candidates. Cruz will not be the only conservative in the primary - Scott Walker, Rand Paul, and, to a certain extent, Marco Rubio will also vie for the conservatives vote, but he will likely be seen as the "most authentic" conservative of the bunch. 

His inexperience: I don't mean this as a knock, look what it did for President Obama! Simply put, Cruz has only ever been a US Senator while in opposition to President Obama, which means he has a slim record and will be able to run on ideals and deflect accusations of extremism by saying, "I have never attempted to do anything of the sort." Don't underestimate this strategy, it worked out well for President Obama. 

His ethnicity: Let me be clear about this one: I don't think Senator Cruz will run as a Latino, especially in the primary. In fact, I predict that if he does secure the nomination, there will be columns written about how "aloof" Cruz seems around Latinos, especially with another Latino, Senator Marco Rubio in the face that connects better with the Hispanic community. Senator Cruz's ethnicity will be the consolation prize for the GOP establishment, while they would dread having him on the ticket, they would say "at least we nominated the first Latino candidate." And indeed, if Senator Cruz secures the nomination, expect him to shift into high gear, praising his Cuban father, and talking about how proud he is to be Hispanic, even if that isn't the main crux of his campaign.

His smarts: Senator Cruz is no dummy, he is a very smart man and an incredibly skilled speaker and debtor. Expect him to do extremely well and get lots of attention from the media who will describe him as "smart", "precise", "tough", and "unrelenting"

The money: Senator Cruz has the potential to secure a lot of money from grassroots donors, expect the floodgates to open for him in a way that Jeb Bush could only ever really dream of, the base loves 

So there it is folks, Senator Cruz will be the first out the gate, and he isn't someone I would under estimate.

Posted on March 22, 2015 .


I was trying to figure out how to map out all the complexities of this issue in a relatively short blog post, then I came across this speech by Florida Senator Marco Rubio. He perfectly summizes everything I have been feeling today:

Well done, Senator, well done. 

Posted on March 19, 2015 .

Scattershot: Later, Aaron.

Later Aaron Schock! The Republican Congressman from IL with unusual spending habits (he decorated his office to look like a Downton Abby set, I'm not kidding.) has announced he will resign effective March 31. 

Hey Conservatives, let's make sure we're nominating people who are living the message we're trying to deliver to voters.

And my fellow millennials, as we start to win seats in Congress and participate more and more with active roles in government, no matter what party we're apart of, let's refrain from the douchery....


... And make sure we do our best not to emarrass ourselves. 

Posted on March 17, 2015 .

Scattershot: Israel

I seriously hope the people of Israel choose to keep Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's party in election taking place right now. Netanyahu reminded me of Winston Churchill in his address before Congress, sounding the alarm on the intent of the Iranians once they receive nuclear weapons. 

It seems the rest of the world, lead by President Obama, is content making deals with tyrants. If the lessons of history have taught us anything, it is that negotiating with unreasonable people never ends well. 

Neville Chamberlain went to Nazi Germany and got "a piece of paper" promising peace and Britain was bombed repeatedly just months later. We are giving Iran 10 years, 10 years! This is a big mistake. 

What is a Scattershot? Because the blog is new, I will add an explanation as to what a post is. A "Scattershot" is like an extended social media post. It's my immediate thoughts on something with limited editing. Full blog posts will be labeled as such. 

Posted on March 17, 2015 and filed under scattershots.