Tag Archives: Marco Rubio

Kevin Mullin Is Disappointed In You

Poor, poor State Sen. Kevin Mullin (R-Oatmeal). He might just have to relinquish his spot in our delegation to the Republican National Convention. And it’s all our fault.

Mullin, last seen trying to sneak pro-gambling language into a couple of unrelated bills, and seen before that loitering incuriously outside the room that Norm McAllister “shared” with his teenage “assistant,” says that if Donald Trump keeps winning primaries, he won’t be a party to Trump’s coronation in Cleveland.  He told VPR’s Mitch Wertlieb:

“… after Tuesday night, I’m not so sure that there is an alternative path. We’re still trying to assess the numbers to see if there is a way to try to get to a brokered convention and have some sanity prevail,” he says.

You know the Republican Party is in bad shape when “sanity” equals “a brokered convention.” Where someone other than the top two vote-getters would be parachuted into the nomination, perhaps without winning a single vote in the primaries.

See, Mullin doesn’t like Ted Cruz either. His hot ideas: John Kasich, who still trails Marco Rubio in delegates, or Paul Ryan, who didn’t run and says he won’t accept the nomination.

In other words, Kevin Mullin is hoping that his party overturns the will of its voters. Because, I suppose, the Republican Wise Men Know Best.

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Former politician does something irrelevant

Well, well. Look at what the Sunday Times Argus brought me.

Former Vermont Gov. Jim Douglas has endorsed Republican John Kasich for president.

Wow. That’s… uh… that’s… useless.

How useless? Douglas issued his endorsement on Tuesday. As far as I can tell, the Times Argus was the first* media outlet to even mention it.Five days later. 

*Update: Seven Days’ Paul Heintz reported the endorsement in a longer piece last Wednesday about preparations for the state Republican convention.

That’s how you move the needle, folks.

Douglas’ endorsement came the day after the New York primary results put yet another nail in Kasich’s coffin. Which begs the only interesting question about this:

Why now? And why not before, when it might possibly have made a little bit of difference?

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Primary reax: Big Bernie, Little Marco, voting rights

Three Brief Posts In One! (Ignoring what the experts would say about fostering pageviews, oh well.) In descending order: Big night for Bernie (but not big enough), a bad night for GOP establishment, and A Tale of Two States on the voting process.

1. Bernie continues to confound the experts, and people like me. His Michigan victory plants his flag in another area of the country and reinforces the idea that The Left Cannot Be Ignored by the Democratic Party. However, he comes out of the night in even worse shape delegate-wise, thanks to Hillary’s thumping victory in Mississippi.

The clock and the delegate math are not in Bernie’s favor, but the Michigan win gives him every reason to keep on fighting. Which, in my view, is a good thing for the Democratic Party: the longer he keeps going, the stronger the case for making the progressive agenda front-and-center in the next administration.

2. Boy, does it ever look like the GOP establishment blundered big-time. They’re being outfoxed by a guy who uses an election-night speech as an infomercial platform. Their big move to back Marco Rubio is looking awfully sour, isn’t it?

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Nice going, VTGOP

Last week, a whole bunch of Vermont Republicans (including Phil Scott) issued a mass endorsement of Marco Rubio, forswearing their perceived favorite, John Kasich. They argued that Rubio was best positioned to block the establisment Republican bete noire, Donald J. Trump.

In doing so, they well and truly shot themselves in the foot.

The Vermont primary results: Trump narrowly beat Kasich, while Rubio was a distant third and failed to win a single delegate. It’s hard to imagine a worse outcome for the state’s Republican establishment.

And it seems obvious that if Vermont Republicans had stuck with Kasich, he would have won the state. He trails Trump by less than three percent, while Rubio took almost 20 percent.

In the long run it makes no difference, but it would have saved the VTGOP the embarrassment of being one more state in the Trump column. Vermont Republican leaders made their distaste for Trump abundantly clear; now, he is their standard-bearer, and they could have avoided that fate if they hadn’t been too clever by half.

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Phil Scott Leadership Watch: Presidential mush

Looks like Marco Rubio has belatedly realized his Comic Insult routine was doing him no favors.

JENKS, Okla. — Someone in the rafters shouted: “Donald Trump has small hands!”

“We’re not talking about that today,” Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) said in response. “It was fun while it lasted.”

… He still called Trump “a con artist” but there was little talk of the businessman’s small hands, or spray tan, or his large private plane.

Yeah, they had to take the Rubot into the shop for a little reprogramming. Because making jokes about Donald Trump’s spray tan and dick size were making Marco look… eh… just a tad unpresidential.

They were also devastating to Phil Scott’s endorsement of Rubio, which posits the notion that the Florida Senator “can build consensus” and treats “the process with respect” and “has a calming effect.”

Speaking of Phil Scott, he finally issued an official statement about his endorsement. Which, curiously, has not been posted on his website; it was simply sent out to his email list. VPR’s Taylor Dobbs posted it on his Twitter feed; you’ll find it After The Jump.

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The Brock campaign’s nuclear connections — UPDATED

Last week, Randy Brock kinda re-introduced his bid for lieutenant governor at the same news conferece where a bunch of Republicans threw their lot in with Marco Rubio, the presidential candidate last seen telling dick jokes about Donald Trump.

Mm-hmm, presidential.

Brock made headlines by claiming he knows how to boost state tax revenue by $100 million, and I’ll be writing more about that in the near future. But he also showcased his campaign team. And the media coverage was notable for what it didn’t say.

VTDigger identified campaign manager Brad Ferland in passing, without specifying his credentials. The Vermont Press Bureau named Ferland* (listing his day job as deputy commissioner of the state Department of Finance and Management) and two others: Brent Burns, credentials unspecified; and Guy Page, identified as “field director for VT Watchdog.”

*UPDATE: The VPB was in error. There are two Brad Ferlands. The one who works for the state is not connected with the Brock campaign in any way. 

The latter is interesting enough; VT Watchdog is the Green Mountain outpost of the national Watchdog network, which is funded by far-right wealthy donors in the Koch brothers orbit.

But what’s even more interesting about Page and Ferland is what wasn’t reported: both are on the payroll of the Vermont Energy Partnership. For those unfamiliar, this bland-sounding organization is basically a sounding board for corporate energy interests in Vermont. As Green Mountain Daily put it:

The Vermont Energy Partnership was founded by [some] of the most powerful corporations, few from Windham County, including IBM, Casella Waste Management, and Pizzagalli Construction, plus business associations like the Vermont Fuel Dealers Association. And, of course, Entergy.

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That Rubio endorsement is looking better and better

Two days after his as-quiet-as-possible endorsement of Marco Rubio, Lt. Gov. Phil Scott finally talked to a reporter about it. And he made it even worse.

He told Seven Days’ Terri Hallenbeck that he had planned to endorse John Kasich until the Ohio governor signed a bill defunding Planned Parenthood. For the self-described pro-choicer Scott, that was a deal-breaker.

But wait: Rubio is, if anything, more profoundly anti-choice than Kasich. He has voted, numerous times, to defund Planned Parenthood, and opposes abortion rights even in cases of rape or incest. Scott’s weasely response?

Scott acknowledged that Rubio opposes funding Planned Parenthood, but said, “He didn’t sign a bill doing so.”

Oh, what a load of crap.

Which is worse: endorsing an actual Planned Parenthood defunder, or endorsing an anti-Planned Parenthood candidate to, among other things, nominate Supreme Court justices?

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Phil Scott Leadership Watch: Ducking Rubio (UPDATED)

Update: Most of what I wrote here is incorrect. I’ve been informed that Scott’s radio interview was taped in advance. He was, in fact, presiding over the Senate when the Rubio presser was held. My apologies for jumping to a conclusion. I’m keeping the original post intact because I don’t believe in erasing my mistakes. 

It still doesn’t explain why the Republicans held the presser at a time when Scott wasn’t available, and didn’t mention Scott’s name at all. Scott clearly intended for his endorsement of Marco Rubio to gain as little notice as possible. 

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Earlier today, I wrote about Lt. Gov. Phil Scott’s arm’s-length, leave-no-fingerprints endorsement of Marco Rubio. You know, the one where he didn’t show up for a unified Republican press conference, at which nobody mentioned his name. The only indication of his endorsement was on a distributed list. He never even issued a statement about it.

Well, now we know where he was.

Yup. Paul Ralston’s vanity project, The Reluctant Pedant (I may have misremembered the title), airs at 1:00 Thursdays on WDEV. The Republican endorsement presser was at 1:00 Thursday in the Statehouse.

I gave Scott too much credit. I figured he was presiding over the Senate’s debate on marijuana legalization, a big issue on which he could have been called upon to cast a tie-breaking vote. But he was nowhere near the Senate. He was in Waterbury appearing on his “friend’s” radio show.

Now, maybe he considered that an unbreakable appointment. But the Republicans could have easily scheduled the presser for another hour, when he could have been on hand.

Nope, he was ducking. What a leader he is.

Repeating above update: Scott’s radio interview was taped earlier on Thursday. He was, in fact presiding over the Senate. Again, I apologize for my error. 

Profiles In Courage, the Phil Scott Way!

Apparently, Lt. Gov. Phil Scott endorsed Marco Rubio for President yesterday.

I say “apparently” because he didn’t appear at the big endorsement extravaganza put on by top Republicans yesterday at the Statehouse. Nor has he released a statement of any kind.

This is pretty damn shameful. The details from VTDigger:

At a Statehouse news conference, GOP legislators touted what they called Rubio’s values-based campaign. Afterward, Rep. Kurt Wright, R-Burlington, gave VTDigger a list of those backing Rubio, which included Lt. Gov. Phil Scott, 27 representatives and one senator.

Scott was not present or mentioned at the news conference. He could not be reached late Thursday afternoon for comment.

Holy Hiding In A Closet, Batman!

The strategery had an effect — and I have to infer it was the effect Scott wanted: very limited coverage. I assume that the Statehouse media corps were covering the Senate’s debate on marijuana legalization. As far as I can tell, VTDigger was the only media outlet to report on the endorsement.

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Gnats to Fart in Windstorm

Oh look, a bunch of Republican lawmakers are belatedly getting off the pot.

Vermont state Rep. Kurt Wright, R-Burlington, says approximately 30 Republican lawmakers will endorse Marco Rubio for president on Thursday.

… “He’s the last best chance,” Wright said. “I think the window’s beginning to close.”

Err, “beginning” to close? More like “coming down like a well-greased guillotine.”

Presumably, at least some of these 30 Bravehearts also attended the John Kasich Town Hall last Saturday. None endorsed him, although they were all very happy to be on hand. But I guess they realize that Foxy Grandpa’s window was never open, let alone “beginning to close.” It’ll be interesting to see how many top Republicans show up at the just-anounced Kasich Town Hall on Monday at Castleton University.

The Rubot also got the coveted (cough, choke) endorsement of former Lt. Gov. Brian Dubie, who praised Florida’s Usually Absentee Senator as a “strong conservative” with “bold conservative ideas.”

Yeah, that’ll move the needle. Look out, Trump: Brian Dubie is comin’ to get ya!

Also, gosh, I didn’t realize Dubie was such a fan of strong conservatism. I guess that Jim-Douglas-without-the-charm act he pulled in 2010 was just a load of horse hockey.

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