Monday, February 13, 2023


New York magazine's Ed Kilgore recognizes that Senator Tim Scott's presidential campaign is highly unlikely to lead to the nomination:
... in a field of candidates implicitly and explicitly promising to usher in a glorious post-Trump future for the GOP, Scott will need an ideological identity that goes beyond legitimizing his party’s “color-blind” racial policies....

The two distinctive policy ideas that Scott is most associated with are ... tax preferences for private capital investments in low-income areas and “school choice.” ... Scott’s going to need something a little more novel than promoting these chestnuts that virtually all Republicans support anyway.
But as the usually astute Kilgore strains to imagine how a Scott campaign could succeed, he loses his grip on reality:
One of Scott’s best assets in what could be a vicious primary season dominated by Trump and DeSantis is his sunny disposition.

“He truly believes that God is great and America is great and we are provided with incredible opportunities. So I think a Ronald Reagan ‘Morning in America’ hopeful America vision is one that Tim has, lives and breathes and is really needed in our country,” Republican senator John Barrasso told the [Wall Street] Journal.

It’s possible Republicans could grow sick of nuclear exchanges that drive up the negatives of the big-time candidates and hurt the party as well. Scott could catch on as the beneficiary of a murder-suicide scenario involving the equally saturnine Floridians Trump and DeSantis.
Ed, just stop. Republican voters don't want "sunny." It's questionable whether they even wanted "sunny" in the Reagan years. (Right-wingers didn't use the phrase "own the libs" back then, but that's what they thought Reagan did, and that's what they liked. His attacks on Democrats, liberals, and government may have come with a wink and a smile, but they were meant to sting, and his policies were meant to make us howl.)

If Republicans somehow reject the two leading nasty people in the race, or if the two of them exit the race early, or stay out altogether -- all extremely unlikely scenarios -- then the GOP base will be desperate to find someone who's equally nasty. Maybe Mike Pompeo can fill that role, or maybe there'll be a late entry by Mike Flynn or Mike Lindell, Steve Bannon or Stephen Miller, or Donald Trump Jr.

Or maybe it'll be the person who's the subject of the lead story at the Fox News website right now:

A photo of former Arizona Republican gubernatorial candidate Kari Lake attending Super Bowl LVII has gone viral, but for reasons you might not expect.

The former news anchor turned GOP firebrand was seen sitting during the controversial playing of the Black national anthem ahead of the game, which took place Sunday at State Farm Stadium in Glendale, Arizona.

A photo of her refusing to stand for the anthem was posted on social media and quickly sparked a frenzy of people praising her decision.

"Never been easier to be a hero these days," wrote one user responding to the photo of Lake seated during the song.

Another Twitter user stated: "Good for her. No one should support this. It was created to divide the country."

"I’m just here for THE National Anthem," Lake responded to one Twitter post about the photo.
Lake is a failed candidate who lost a winnable race, but she's the center of what Fox considers the most important story of the moment -- because she's disrespecting this song. And she's being cheered for this.

Given the specifics of this story, it's hilarious that anyone thinks a Black senator could win the 2024 Republican presidential nomination. And it's hilarious that anyone thinks being positive and upbeat can win it for anyone. GOP voters love divisiveness. They love darkness and "saturnine" politicians. That's how they'll vote in 2024 even if they don't vote for Trump or DeSantis.

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