For me, the most interesting aspect of Marco Rubio’s ill-fated rebuttal to President Obama’s State of the Union Address this week wasn’t the Senator’s palpable, obvious difficulty with nerve. As entertaining as the stuttering, stammering, and dry-mouth was to behold, it is the ongoing reaction of my Conservative friends and associates that I’m enjoying most. The response can invariably be broken down into two categories:
- To pretend it didn’t happen.
- To respond to the chorus of laughter from the left with comments like: “Why don’t you respond to the content of Senator Rubio’s speech, instead of poking fun at the fact he was thirsty?”
In the case of the former, those smart enough to leave this one alone, I applaud your finally conceding some ground to reality. In the case of the latter, those who feel compelled to pretend the cause of our derision is dehydration, please don’t allow anything I share to influence your Conservative fantasy bubble. The echo chamber you live in is partially what makes progressive political gain possible.
Frankly, there was no content to Senator Rubio’s rebuttal. It was a rehash of the same, worn-out, parroted, rhetorical talking points that cost the GOP the Presidency, and control of the Senate in the 2012 elections. The 2013 GOP who only maintained a lingering, marginal control of the House because of underhanded gerrymandering tactics. The NY Times ran a great piece on this today, entitled ‘Can the Republicans be Saved From Obsolescence?’
As for the remainder of the Senator’s blathering, it was a collection of lies and misleading reductionist clap trap, sprinkled with a hint of science denial, God and patriotism. Oh, and that little gem about the Senator living in a working class neighborhood…That was a particularly ostentatious line of bullshit Conservatives are sure to gobble up, without even thinking of using Google to confirm.
So if you are wondering…Why are liberals only reacting to how pitifully nervous the Senator was? The answer is simple: His inability to remain calm was the only genuine part of his speech. His obvious internal conflict over the garbage he was regurgitating, undoubtedly under threat of losing Super PAC money, was the only detail of interest. We’ve all heard the nonsense pouring out of his dried up soup-cooler before. Yawn.
But the very best part? Continued Republican denial of reality. Instead of determining this man is not prepared to compete in the big show, conservatives will press forward, under the lingering hope his Latino heritage will somehow make a difference in coming elections. Instead of waking up and realizing the Conservative platform only appeals to a handful of shrinking demographics, they will press on without any change in the prioritization of issues. Over the past 10 years I have wondered aloud so many times, is this the best Republicans can do? Really? It’s why I left the Republican party after Bush Jr. was elected and now it seems I will never be back.
To be honest, I have stopped wondering. In an era of accelerating technological progress there will be a natural process of leaving some things behind. It will be sad, in a sense, but it is inevitable. It’s not the first time progress rubbed out a political party…And it’s certainly not going to be the last.