Opinion

State of the Race

The electoral picture continues to look grim for Democrats. In the good news category, Obama’s approval ratings have stopped the steep decline that they have been on since May of this year. In the bad news category, the approval ratings have not bounced back either; they remain at roughly 43 percent approving, 51 percent disapproving — ­­dangerously close to a Jimmy Carter-ish netherworld of unelectability.

The outlook for the party as a whole has deteriorated; Intrade lists the Democrats’ 2012 odds of holding the White House, House of Representatives, and Senate at 48, 25, and 25 percent respectively, a notable decrease from last month. If the election were held today, those odds might be even worse, considering Republican Bob Turner recently had a stunning victory over Democrat David I. Weprin to fill the House seat vacated by Anthony D. Weiner. Turner’s victory in a district where registered Democrats outnumber Republicans 3-to-1 bodes ill for the left’s prospects across the nation.

On the Republican side of the coin, Rick Perry’s star has dimmed considerably. It’s not hard to find the reason why: Perry’s performance in the Republican debates have been painfully inarticulate. His failure to put sentences together could not have come at a worse time for his campaign — having declared his candidacy just six weeks ago, now is the time when the media and voters will put the greatest scrutiny on his record and qualifications. Intrade currently gives Mitt Romney a 45 percent chance of securing the nomination, versus Perry’s 26 percent.

However, the real story is not Romney gaining the upper hand against Perry, but rather the intense dissatisfaction Republicans have with their current crop of declared candidates. There is good reason to be dissatisfied; both Romney and Perry lose to Obama in head-to-head polls, even though the president loses when polling against a generic GOP ballot.

A sign of this dissatisfaction is the heavy effort to draw New Jersey governor Chris Christie into the field of candidates. Intrade reports only a 21 percent chance of the governor entering the race, but a 10 percent chance for him to obtain the nomination — suggesting that if the governor chose to run, he would, like Perry before him, become the instant front-runner. Christie, a darling of Tea Party foot soldiers and Republican elites alike, does appear well-positioned to take the nomination, but has thus far adamantly refused to run.

No one is following these developments more closely than Marco Rubio, the freshman senator from Florida, who currently stands as the odds-on favorite to become the Republican vice presidential candidate. Rubio’s youth, eloquence and residence in an important swing state make him an attractive veep prospect for any Republican nominee.

It’s 407 days until Election Day, and this is The State of the Race.

—Keith Yost

5 Comments
1
Paul Smith over 6 years ago

"Marco Rubio, the freshman senator from Florida, who currently stands as the odds-on favorite to become the Republican vice presidential candidate."

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We need to stop talking about Rubio as a VP candidate hopeful! Marco Rubios parents were NOT U.S. citizens therefore he is NOT eligible to be POTUS or VEEP. If he is a true patriot and supporter of the Constitution, he will immediately call a press conference and announce that he is not a natural born citizen because his parents were not U.S. citizens and that he cannot accept any invitation to join a presidential ticket. For more eligibility info, see: http://naturalborncitizen.wordpress.com/2011/06/24/minor-v-happersett-is-binding-precedent-as-to-the-constitutional-definition-of-a-natural-born-citizen/.

Help me make that happen. Go to http://rubio.senate.gov/public/index.cfm/contact Tell Rubio that you expect him to do the right thing so that we can both fix the constitutional crisis we currently face and forever prevent another from occurring. This problem should have been resolved following Chester A. Arthurs administration when it was discovered that his father was not a U.S. citizen when Chester was born but it wasnt. Let's finally put this question to rest.

If Rubio will stand tall and make that announcement, it would immediately shine a spotlight on Barry's ineligibility and force the SCOTUS/Congress to act. Help me make that happen! It will only take a couple minutes - please do it now!

2
Keith Yost over 6 years ago

To 1) The Tech shares some of its offices with MIT Origami-- I know they typically work with paper, but I bet they could fold tin foil as well. How would you like your very own, hand-crafted, high-craftsmanship tin foil hat? You could think of it like a little crown, because in my book you, my friend, are the king of the special people.

3
Keith Yost over 6 years ago

The Tech removed my previous comment because the comment policy says, "No personal attacks." Let me put it in different terms:

Paul Smith, you are a very special person.

Now who could object to that.

4
Paul Smith over 6 years ago

Your opinion is noted, Keith. If you'd like to discuss the merits, I'm happy to oblige. Have you studied the issue?

5
Paul Smith over 6 years ago

Keith? Do you not want to discuss the fact that Rubio is not a 'natural born citizen', Keith?