Now few people know this, but lost in last night's hydration disaster, was the fact that Senator Rubio actually gave a speech. The first nationally televised Republican speech since Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan lost last November. In large part, they lost because they came off as whiny and defensive. And the picture of Barack Obama that those two painted did not match the Barack Obama most voters experienced. So the big question for Rubio's response was what lesson here had the GOP learned?Video below the fold.
SEN. MARCO RUBIO, R-FL (2/12/2013): He accuses us of wanting dirty water and dirty air. ... He accuses us of wanting to leave the elderly and disabled to fend for themselves. ... His favorite attack of all is that those of us who don't agree with him — that we only care about rich people. ... But any time anyone opposes the President's agenda, he and his allies usually respond by falsely attacking their motives."I mean, he's just so hurtful, why, it's enough to make a man perspire. I'm sorry, I mean, glow."
Yes, how awful it is to misrepresent your political opponent's views and proposals. Anything you'd care to add to that?SEN. MARCO RUBIO, R-FL (2/12/2013): Our free enterprise economy is the source of our middle class prosperity. But President Obama? He believes it's the cause of our problems. ... I hope the President will abandon his obsession with raising taxes. ... Instead of playing politics with Medicare, when is the President going to offer his detailed plan to save it? Tonight would have been a good time for him to do it.Yes, instead of attacking capitalism, and obsessing about taxes, and not offering a Medicare plan, why didn't he just go out there last night and say something about Medicare? Something... what would that sound like, what would that sound like?
BARACK OBAMA (2/12/2013): On Medicare, I'm prepared to enact reforms that will achieve the same amount of health care savings by the beginning of the next decade, as the reforms proposed by the bipartisan Simpson-Bowles commission.I see the problem. Once again, rather than responding to actual Obama, Republicans are stuck responding to the fictional image of Obama that they've created, the same boilerplate Republican talking points, but just with a better backstory.
SEN. MARCO RUBIO, R-FL (2/12/2013): More government isn't going to help you get ahead. It's going to hold you back. More government isn't going to create more opportunities. It's going to limit them.And queue the exact same Republican in the same speech trying to limit your access to federal help, cataloging the federal help that somehow managed not to hold him back.
SEN. MARCO RUBIO, R-FL (2/12/2013): I believe in federal financial aid. I couldn't have gone to college without it. ... Medicare is especially important to me. ... It pays for the care my mother receives now."But my point is, fuck you. (wild audience applause) Because, I don't know, it makes you dependent. Whaddaya gonna do?"
So Republicans, a little tip. As you're feeling around for a new party strategy, if Paul Ryan doesn't work, Pablo Real? That's not gonna help. We'll be right back.