Despite relatively low national poll numbers, Marco Rubio’s campaign has calculated that the donor-class favorite can snag the party’s nomination through a strong performance in Nikki Haley and Lindsey Graham’s state of South Carolina, according to a new report.
As National Review outlines in a piece entitled, “Rubio’s Team Plots Path to Nomination: Third in Iowa, Second in N.H., First in S.C.”:
According to multiple Rubio allies recently briefed on campaign strategy, the senator’s team has settled on an unconventional path to winning the GOP primary contest. The strategy, dubbed ‘3-2-1’ by some who have been briefed on it, forecasts a sequence in which Rubio takes third place in Iowa on February 1, finishes second in New Hampshire on February 9, and wins South Carolina on February 20. From there, Rubio would be well-positioned in the long haul to win a plurality of voters, and ultimately a majority of delegates, in a three-way contest against Donald Trump and Ted Cruz.
This report is consistent with the analysis of FiveThirtyEight’s Nate Silver, who famously predicted the outcome of the 2012 Presidential election.
Silver has repeatedly detailed how even if Rubio loses the first few primary contests, the party’s establishment could still throw the 2016 race to Rubio. Silver explains that this is because the Establishment has the “persuasive power to set the rules of engagement and strategically encourage winnowing of the field”:
Imagine that the party establishment is the referee in a boxing match. It has one boxer it would prefer to see win. But it can’t rig the match once it’s underway. However, it can choose when to call the fight. So if its preferred boxer — let’s call him Red — is winning early, it can call the fight after a couple of rounds. But if he’s losing, they can let the fight keep going and hope he prevails on the basis of his stamina…he’s getting a lot of second and third chances when his opponent might not. And that makes his overall odds pretty good. He just has to lead at any point and the refs can call the match.
It is perhaps not surprising that the pro-amnesty and mass immigration 2016 candidate believes the Palmetto state is the key to his path to the White House.
Indeed, South Carolina has a history of supporting lawmakers who support large-scale migration—some of whom have even boosted Rubio’s campaign.
For instance, Nikki Haley in her response to the President’s State of the Union address, denounced the policies of GOP frontrunner Donald Trump and delivered the mantra of the open-border philosophy— declaring that “No one who is willing to work hard, abide by our laws, and love our traditions should ever feel unwelcome in this country.” This argument means that any willing employer should be able to hire any willing worker regardless of the country in which they reside—thus removing any suggestion that American workers be entitled to get American jobs.
In her subsequent press tour, Haley told reporters that she is in personal contact with Sen. Rubio and that he was “supportive” of her speech condemning Trump and “appreciated” what she was doing. In one national media appearance, Haley even adopted the Rubio campaign talking point that Rubio, who supports citizenship for illegal immigrants, is “not for amnesty”— publicly retracting her previous statement that Rubio was pro-amnesty only hours after she made it.
Similarly, Trey Gowdy has been a longtime supporter of mass immigration and amnesty for illegal immigrants. In 2013, he teamed up with Luis Gutierrez to try to push for citizenship for illegal immigrants, and likened illegal immigration to children misbehaving in grocery stores. “When children eat a grape at the grocery store or eat a piece of candy waiting in line before mom or dad pays for it we don’t have them arrested for petty larceny,” Gowdy said in 2013, establishing a principle that would forgive unlimited amounts of illegal immigration in perpetuity. Last month, the strongly pro-amnesty Gowdy announced his decision to endorse Marco Rubio.
House Freedom Caucus’ Mick Mulvaney has also called for expanding immigration levels beyond all known historical markers. As Mulvaney writes on his website calling for increased visa dispensations: “The simple truth is our immigration system is broken… it’s too difficult to enter America the right way.” Mulvaney has also publically demeaned his conservative constituents and colleagues, such as influential Iowa Congressman Steve King, for opposing Paul Ryan and Marco Rubio’s agenda of mass amnesty—suggesting that such views are “absurd” and “stupid”. “We need to stop celebrating the absurd in our party and stop rewarding the outrageous and the stupid,” Mulvaney said in 2013.
Similarly, South Carolina Senator Lindsey Graham was a member of the Rubio’s Gang of Eight along with John McCain, Dick Durbin, and Chuck Schumer. Graham recently endorsed Rubio’s mentor, Jeb Bush, for president. Interestingly, Bush told Breitbart News that Rubio’s views on immigration are more leftist than his own: “I put forth, in my book Immigration Wars, a different plan that had a path to legalized status, not a path to citizenship,” as Sen. Rubio’s bill did.
Ironically, the immigration agenda of Rubio, Haley, Mulvaney, Gowdy, and Graham will have the ultimate result of permanently and irreversibly disenfranchising South Carolinian voters and negating any electoral impact of the state. It would also swamp out the cultural influence of South Carolinians, as they are greatly outnumbered by migrants and their descendants from countries like Yemen and Bangladesh with vastly different cultures and traditions.
As Sens. Jeff Sessions and Dave Brat explained in a recent “Dear Colleague” letter hand-delivered to every GOP Congressional office, Rubio’s Gang of Eight immigration bill “would have tripled green card issuances over the next ten years—a population of new permanent residents almost seven times larger than the population of South Carolina.”
The lawmakers point out that expanding immigration, a position championed by Rubio and these South Carolinian lawmakers, goes against the desires of the overwhelming majority of the GOP electorate:
Ninety-two percent of GOP voters oppose this immigration growth, Pew reports. A microscopic 7 percent of GOP voters say they’d like to see more immigration. And yet party elites continue pushing for more—with no recognition of, let alone concern for, its impact on workers… How can it be possible that the demands of 92 percent of our electorate are not merely ignored, but sabotaged?