It's back again. The Republican Presidential Power Rankings. Time to get updated on what's happening with your favorite Republican presidential hopefuls.
1. Rand Paul: Paul stated that he did not think that a filibuster would stop the funding of Obamacare. That's almost too bad. I love when Senators actually do the speaking filibuster. It's so much more interesting than the procedural filibuster. Paul and others who want to defund Obamacare probably do not have the votes to filibuster it in the Senate. People are still convincd Paul's filibuster was more than a publicity stunt, but you know how those uninformed voters are. But in news that might hurt Paul's chances at securing the nomination, you have Paul trying to end mandatory minimum sentencing and trying to restore voting rights to convicted felons once they return to society. These are both interesting proposals. I am in favor with one of them and would have to look at the other, more. Rand Paul's wife has expressed some concern over Rand running saying that the presidential race is all about character assassination. I don't think character assassination is what has doomed other presidential hopefuls, but then again, what do I know?
2. Chris Christie: According to a recent Public Policy Polling poll in New Hampshire, Christie is on the rise and is now neck and neck with Rand Paul in a key primary state. New Jersey voters assume Christie is going to be running for president but yet a plurality of them still believe Christie will put managing New Jersey ahead of managing his own political future. Donors to Christie can sidestep some of the campaign finance laws by donating to the Republican Governor's Association. But there are some ways to criticize Christie, fairly easily. For instance, employment is up just 2.2% since he took office, sixth lowest according to Bloomberg news. But that's probably character assassination...
3. Ted Cruz: Oh, Ted Cruz. Cruz pissed off House Republicans. He spent all this time advocating for the House Republicans to pass a resolution defunding Obamacare as part of the budget talks. But then when it was finally passed, Cruz conceded that there was nothing he could do in the Senate. Good job, House Republicans! It's likely Republican primary voters will forget all about Cruz's concession and just remember his efforts to defund Obamacare. Cruz also stated that the government shutdown wouldn't be that bad. But if Cruz is right, why would Obama be threatened into a shutdown? Ugh. But who cares about logical consistency or facts?
The Fading Favorite
4. Marco Rubio: Well, the Washington Post has written a mini-profile on Rubio. They're not really sure who Rubio is at this point. Rubio has been consistent in one thing. Being inconsistent. Rubio wanted to reform immigration and now he's silent about it. He flip-flopped on Syria. He flip-flopped on education. The list goes on and on. But I suppose if the Republican party wants to show they're not racist by nominating a Hispanic, I can't stop them. Rubio has also gone campaigning for Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli. Cuccinelli has been a hardcore right-wing Republican and will probably continue to be. Whoever is advising Rubio on his actual political actions, I'd be looking for a new job, if I were you.
The Republican Governor's Club
5. Jeb Bush: Bush has joined embattled Louisiana Republican Governor Bobby Jindal in trying to block the Department of Justice from suing Louisiana over school vouchers. Bush has always been an education reformer but this is getting a lot of play in Conservative circles. Bush has cultivated an image as a moderate Republican but like Rubio, he has campaigned for Cuccinelli. This helps Bush cultivate himself to the Republican primary. Bush has a stronger chance to be elected in a general election than he does in the primary. He could certainly reposition the party in 2016 and beyond. He may get critical funding from the moderates who might be looking to jump ship, especially if the New Left is actually rising.
6. Scott Walker: Well, Walker decided that he opposed a government shutdown due to the Obamacare fight. As did Cruz, apparently. I got jokes today, sucka. Walker's most popular legislative priority with Conservatives is under attack. In the spirit of governors everywhere, ignore the state's Supreme Court's decision.
7. Rick Perry: Perry has decided to try and make everyone forget about his oops moment in the Republican debate by engaging in a public debate with Martin O'Malley. I'm sure it went over fine. Perry stated that Texas is leading the pack with job growth but as O'Malley pointed out, Maryland leads the states with schools, median income, and innovation. O'Malley also invited Perry to attend the National Governor's Association since Texas seceded. You know how Perry likes to secede. Perry did not look great. What's more is that Perry decided to tour a gun factory just two days after the Navy Yard shooting. All of this can be ignored, but Perry's debate skills needs to improve quickly if he really wants to run.
The Long shots
8. Kelly Ayotte: Ayotte fares well in the New Hampshire primary if she chose to run, at least according to Public Policy Polling. Ayotte has asked for more information about the Navy Yard shooting and has tried to reframe the gun issue about mental health. Conservatives love that type of reframing. She has stated that the debate over Obamacare should not shut down the government because it is not good for America.
9. Paul Ryan: Ryan is favored in Wisconsin over Walker. So why rank Ryan lower than Walker? Well, Ryan has been silent during the government shutdown. Since he was the economic wizard of the Republican Party for years, it is kind of strange. House Majority Leader Eric Cantor's plan to delay Obamacare did not make it to Ryan before it hit the newswire. Some are speculating that because he embraced immigration reform, he shouldn't antagonize the base? But at that point you're accepting the premise the that he would be in favor of allowing the funding of Obamacare. But oh well. Ryan told a business group Obamacare should be delayed a year.
10. Peter King: King was critical of Ted Cruz. He always has been. This time he said he hopes that Cruz should be quiet from now on. He hopes that Cruz's influence over the Republican party has ended. King has an interesting background check bill that has yet to reach the House floor, but once it does, support from hated liberals like Nancy Pelosi will doom King in the Republican primary. If people can do the opposition research, King won't be able to make it far in the Republican primary.