While it was radical loon Saul Alinsky who first promoted the idea, it was Rahm Emanuel who brought the notion of never letting a crisis go to waste into the mainstream back when he was President Obama’s chief of staff. A political writer for The New York Times is now trying to help Beto O’Rourke apply the principle to his campaign, which is in free-fall lately.
As Beto O’Rourke waded through a crowd that had gathered Thursday night to honor victims of the mass shooting in El Paso, the struggling presidential candidate was welcomed as a hometown hero.
“Beto!” someone shouted, addressing this city’s former congressman. “Thank you for being our voice!”
Mr. O’Rourke shook hands and paid his respects at the memorial to the victims of the Aug. 3 massacre at a Walmart that had targeted Latinos and left 22 people dead. He then walked several yards away to pose for photographs with admirers.
Fair warning: if Beto is your voice, you aren’t going to be heard for much longer.
It’s always important to remember that O’Rourke’s only claims to national fame are losing a Senate election and launching an ill-advised presidential campaign that couldn’t have disappeared from prominence more quickly had David Copperfield been managing it.
The media created Beto, then the media forgot Beto, now the media is heartlessly giving the delusional narcissist false hope.
The headline of the article is ” After El Paso Shooting, Will Voters Revisit Beto O’Rourke?”
That’s a little misleading. In terms of this primary race, the voters weren’t really visiting Beto in the first place. They were mostly passing by and saying hi on their way to Joe Biden, Bernie Sanders, and Mayor Pete.
The article does correctly note that times are tough for Team Beto right now:
A new Monmouth University poll, conducted Aug. 1-4, found Mr. O’Rourke with less than 1 percent of support from likely Iowa Democratic caucusgoers. He was at 6 percent in the Monmouth poll in April.
His poll numbers have also been weak in New Hampshire and South Carolina, as well as nationally, and his July debate performance and his most recent campaign fund-raising report both fell short of the heightened expectations for his candidacy among some in the party earlier in the year.
Those “heightened expectations” were another thing that the media manufactured out of whole cloth. They were quickly ditched in favor of Mayor Pete, who was to be the MSM’s next hype concoction.
This is the ray of sunshine through all the murders that the Times sees for a Beto bounce-back:
But Mr. O’Rourke’s allies and advisers hope that his impassioned response to the massacre in his hometown, with flashes of raw anger that match the mood of many Democrats, will prompt voters nationally to give him another look. His remarks calling President Trump a white supremacist, and his cussing out of the news media as he urged journalists to “connect the dots” between the El Paso killings and Mr. Trump’s anti-immigrant language and exploitation of racism, drew praise from both liberals and moderates.
Clarifying: “Mr. O’Rourke’s allies and advisers” (all seven of them!) are pinning their hopes for Beto’s return to whatever relevance he had on him saying and doing the same exact things that every one of his primary opponents have been for the past week.
That illustrates the central problem with Beto, which I wrote about back in May when the MSM first began ignoring him in favor of Mayor Pete: under scrutiny, there is no “there” there.
He isn’t a particularly sharp thinker. What attention he’s gotten recently has come from carefully crafted publicity stunts.
What he is is a guy who spent too much time last year reading and believing the hype being spewed about him in the media.
Beto’s handlers have obviously coached him to seize this ghoulish opportunity:
Toward the end of the interview, he suggested that his experience in El Paso at this moment has uniquely prepared him to take on Mr. Trump, who has been accused of emboldening white nationalists through nativist and racist rhetoric.
But he is not really <wink, wink> using the tragedy for political purposes:
Mr. O’Rourke has been careful to stress that his first focus is on El Paso, not his political future, and Democrats close to him swat away any suggestion that his frequent television appearances are designed to help him in 2020. Still, as he prepares to return to the campaign trail, potentially later this week, Mr. O’Rourke said he believed more people were now attuned to his message.
Whatever helps you sleep at night, Robbie.