You might not like their individual moves, but the likely top five in this year’s Republican primary field is Duke to the Democrats’ (2-28) San Jose State.
Would that the Dems’ only player of note had been a one-and-done, but wily veteran Hillary Clinton plods on to the bitter end, hoping that someone somewhere will finally draft her.
Clinton, in fact, is more than five years older than the oldest of the Republican starting five, the 62-year-old Jeb Bush, and easily old enough to be the mother of three more – Scott Walker, 47, Ted Cruz, 44, and Marco Rubio, 43. Throw in the 52-year-old Rand Paul, and the average age of the five is still under 50.
What is more, every one of these candidates defies the “Republicans are dumb” theme the Democrats have been trotting out to convince themselves of their superiority since egghead Adlai Stevenson had a great fall.
Those Republicans who were not evil geniuses – Nixon, Cheney, Rove – the media have painted as blithering idiots. Dwight Eisenhower was doddering and incoherent. Gerald Ford, perhaps the best athlete to occupy the White House, was a bumbling fool.
Ronald Reagan, in the memorable words of Clark Clifford, was an “amiable dunce.” The senior George Bush was so out of touch he was ambushed by a grocery scanner. Dan Quayle could not spell “potato.”
George W. Bush inspired the popular bumper sticker, “A village in Texas is missing its idiot,” and Sarah Palin was the trailer trash who could allegedly “see Russia from my house.”
Democratic politicians, by contrast, have been “scary smart,” too bright for an undeserving American citizenry. In addition to the egghead Stevenson, JFK was a Pulitzer Prize-winning author. Eugene McCarthy was professorial. George McGovern was cerebral.
Bill Bradley was a Rhodes scholar. So was Bill Clinton. Gary Hart, Michael Dukakis, Al Gore and John Kerry were all big-brained wonks.
Obama, of course, as historian Michael Beschloss put it, was “probably the smartest guy ever to become president.” He had to be in 2008 to beat Hillary, “the smartest women in the world.”
Most Americans never got to hear that Ted Sorensen wrote Kennedy’s “Profiles in Courage” or that Bill Bradley scored a lowly 485 on his SAT verbals or that John Kerry’s grades at Yale were “virtually identical” to George W. Bush’s.
While the Associated Press alone would dispatch a squad of reporters to fact check Palin’s memoir – 11 to be precise – the media were no more likely to fact check the books Obama claimed to have written than they were the Quran.
And if Hillary really were the world’s smartest woman, you would think that at some time, somehow, she would actually do something right.
Sixth-man Ben Carson has. He was the first neurosurgeon to successfully separate twins conjoined at the head. So has reserve Carly Fiorina. And she did not ride her husband’s coattails to become CEO of Hewlett Packard.
Rand Paul, with an M.D. from Duke, is an eye surgeon. Marco Rubio graduated cum laude from Miami University Law School. Jeb Bush graduated from the University of Texas in less than three years Phi Beta Kappa with a degree in Latin American studies.
As to Ted Cruz, he graduated magna cum laude from Harvard Law. “I’ve had great students,” Alan Dershowitz said of Cruz, “but he has to be at the top of anyone’s short list, in terms of raw brain power.”
OK, Scott Walker did not graduate from college, but then again neither did Harry Truman. Besides, unlike a certain Democrat, Walker has not felt the need to hide his grades and SAT scores.
In the media retelling, the Democrats are not only smarter, but they are also more diverse. “Now, over the long term, [immigration] is going to get solved because at some point there’s going to be a President Rodriguez or there’s going to be a President Chen,” said the president smugly a month ago, assuming the Democrats would elect these people.
The Republicans, Obama seems to have forgotten, have two “Rodriguezes” on the starting five, and a third if you go by the voter registration form of wannabe Jeb Bush.
On the deep bench, the Republicans even have two “Chens,” Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal and South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley, both of whom were born to Asian immigrants. In fact, the Republicans are so diverse that several of them have eligibility issues.
Despite all their claims of “inclusivity,” the Democrats’ lineup makes the Wisconsin Badgers look like the Harlem Globetrotters. Their one claim to diversity is Harvard Law’s first “woman of color,” Elizabeth Warren.
Aka “Fauxcahontas,” Warren adopted the Ward Churchill model and greased her way through the affirmative action machinery as a 100 percent fake Indian.
So what do the Democrats have? They have the home court advantage and the media refs fully in their pocket. These are major advantages. Without them, there is no contest in 2016. Without them, there is no Democratic Party.
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