It’s tempting to overthink New Hampshire—a state that is not really indicative of America, but has huge influence over its presidency—and reconfigure the race for about a week…until the next primary reshuffles it again. All the breathless coverage usually misses the point, but perhaps not in the case of Rubio’s stingingly weak showing.
A week ago, Rubio was polling at a distant second to Trump, jockeying back and forth with John Kasich for that position. Professional dumbass Bill Kristol—who has been dead wrong about everything from the Iraq War to going to war with Iran—predicted Rubio would win a surprise upset over Trump at the last minue. [Remind me to let Kristol do my sports betting picks…so I can pick the opposite.] Well, not only was that pipe dream crushed but Rubio will probably come in 5th when all the results are tallied.
This is significant because right now the media is paying attention to every little micro-disappointment, and small uptick. [It’s why Jeb Bush, of all people, will now be looked at as “possible” because he was third in Iowa. Which is why Rubio himself enjoyed a big bump after he placed third in Iowa, despite being predicted to place…third in Iowa, but hey, it was a closer third than they thought so all the sudden the talk was “Rubio will win!”
Now that assertion has been seriously cast into doubt. And I say that with mixed-reservations since I also have been saying for a few months that it will probably be Rubio. Of course, I was also mostly basing that off of what the Republican Party kept desperately putting out there to stop Trump, and not so much off of my own gut instinct that a party base that has become ferociously against immigration would back him.
Rubio’s campaign has been touting a 3-2-1 strategy where he places 3rd in Iowa, 2nd in New Hampshire, and 1st in South Carolina. That strategy now seems like a very long-shot, and if that’s true then it makes you wonder how he’ll be able to make up the ground Trump, Cruz, or even—gulp—Jeb have gained.