Question: when do you know that a campaign is in trouble?
Answer: when it stops emphasizing its own message, and starts attacking its rivals.
Case in point: Team Jeb! Bush wants to open a full frontal attack on Marco Rubio, the young senator from Florida. At least, that’s what U.S. News & World Report says. This website got its hands on a presentation that Jeb and his cohorts used to convince Jeb’s donors to stick by their guy, even though he’s trailing in the polls.
Additionally, while the slides released to the media outlined Bush’s overarching argument against Florida Sen. Marco Rubio – that he’s the GOP’s Barack Obama – the complete offering contains more biting, detailed slights, pointedly questioning the character and ethics of Bush’s home state rival.
The document provides a rare behind-the-curtain look at the gritty details of a campaign at a crucial inflection point. Here’s a breakdown of the most illuminating pieces of intelligence contained in Bush’s 2016 blueprint.
The main point of the presentation? The campaign supposedly found some dirt on Rubio and is going to use it in the weeks and months ahead.
Here’s a slide from the presentation. Pay special attention to the last bullet point:
Oh no! What in the world can that “concern” be? Did Marco cheat on his wife? Did he slaughter a poor, innocent puppy by eating it alive? What? Your imagination runs wild, doesn’t it?
Well, sadly for the Bush campaign there’s just one problem (in addition to it being rather pathetic that Jeb! is so desperate that he believes he can only win by destroying other candidates): it isn’t true. As The Blaze reports, former members of Mitt Romney’s vetting team checked out Rubio’s past in 2012 — when Mitt was looking around for a running mate — and didn’t find anything bad.
Nothing. Zero. Zilch.
But Beth Myers, a Romney advisor who oversaw vetting of Rubio as a possible selection for Romney’s running mate, told TheBlaze that the Florida senator “passed” without any serious trouble.
“Nothing we found would have disqualified him from serving as VP,” Myers said, adding she had first-hand knowledge of all the vetting documents.
In other words, Jeb! isn’t merely lowering himself to the level of the average sewer rat, but he’s doing so by using smears (lies) instead of facts.
Can this guy — please — save us the drama and just end his campaign?