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A bizarre criticism of Rubio

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I always thought it was a virtue in a leader to have the issues nailed?

We really have gone off the deep end. 

Look, I know that Senator Marco Rubio made a gaffe during the GOP debate in New Hampshire this last Saturday.  No getting around that.  He got hit with a broadside by Governor Chris Christie of New Jersey that everybody on the planet knew was coming, and even with that forewarning he whiffed. 

Hey, it happens.  It is perhaps due to Rubio’s virtually flawless performances in previous debates that this failure stood out so much.  (It should also be noted that he rebounded admirably from this “glitch” to perform splendidly for the rest of the debate.  I would posit that resiliency is an important trait in a leader, but that’s me.)

What stands out to me is the bizarre and almost breathtakingly hypocritical criticism he’s taking from other candidates (and the media), and in particular Gov. Christie, about what they call his “scripted” answers to everything.  Christie, and others, are focusing on the fact that Rubio has crisp, well-thought-out answers to pretty much every issue thrown at him, delivered with passion and remarkable articulateness in settings ranging from town hall meetings to national debates. 

Gosh, what a concept.  A leader who has the issues nailed and can speak in concise, articulate and reasonable paragraphs without fumbling around for words or invoking bombast every time he’s uncomfortable.

Gosh, what a concept.  A leader who has the issues nailed and can speak in concise, articulate and reasonable paragraphs without fumbling around for words or invoking bombast every time he’s uncomfortable.  I don’t know, I always thought those were virtues.

The other, related, criticism is the “repetitiveness” of Rubio’s answers.  Christie openly mocked Rubio on Saturday night for repeating the same lines multiple times about President Obama “knowing what he is doing,” among other things.  (And, it must be said, Rubio did indeed repeat those lines too many times, playing directly into Christie’s hands.)  But, again, in an earlier time, that was called “staying on message.”  Honestly, isn’t it a regular trope of political candidates that they must “get their message out?” The way successful campaigns do this is by taking any question – and I mean ANY question – and twisting it (or ignoring it) in such a way as to allow the candidate to talk about what he or she wants to talk about, usually in pre-determined talking points. 

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Angus DuBois
Angus DuBois
Contributor
Angus DuBois is the nom de plume of an entrepreneur of 20 years who, in cowardly fashion, prefers to keep his/her business identity a secret. Comments can be forwarded to angus@nexxuspublishing.com.

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