April 30, 2011
When the Epochal Voters Come BackBy Chet Arthur
Millions of new voters came to the polls in 2008 to create a wave for Barack Obama.
I call these new actors in the political drama epochal voters because they were caught up in the excitement of doing something really new and different in politics. We have heard a great deal about how social media were used to stunning effect by the Obama team to bring these epochal voters into the political process.
Epochal voters were largely absent in 2010. That's doubtless attributable to several factors: the bad economy, the lack of commitment over time of epochal voters to take part in voting, and -- perhaps most decisive -- the fact that Barack Obama was not on the ballot last November. Now, epochal voters are disproportionately young, minority, and female.
As we bask in the glow of last November's rout of liberals, we must remember this:
The epochal voters may well be coming back in 2012. I would like to think that you cannot make a soufflé rise twice, that Barack Obama's sell-by date will have passed by then. But I am not sure that will be the case.
Ronald Reagan had a huge appeal to the young -- contrary to all media expectations.
Liberal journalists kept saying he was, well, old. But the young voters of the eighties were attracted to Reagan's sense of adventure, his buoyant optimism about the future, and his obvious fondness for them. Nor did it hurt that Reagan's economy rebounded starting in October 1983, just in time to rescue the Gipper's political life.
We might think that if gas goes over five dollars a gallon by Election Day 2012 that anybody the Republicans put up can win. Don't bet on it. The entire media will go out, all out, for Obama's re-election. They may grind their teeth over Guantanamo Bay staying open, over military tribunals for terrorists, over extending Bush, but they know that Barack Obama is their last best chance for Socialism. They also know that Ruth Bader Ginsburg isn't getting any younger. Fear and loathing of conservatives will do for the newsies what hope and change did for epochal voters in 2008.
I have in the past put forward the case for Marco Rubio in 2012. I maintain again that there is no one else on the political horizon who can create a wave of excitement for conservatives the way Reagan did, or the way Barack Obama did for liberals and epochal voters in 2008.
We desperately need a thumping win, a 40-state romp to sweep out Harry Reid and to create the conditions necessary for a conservative resurgence. Rubio could take the strong stances on immigration -- demanding that immigrants be legal, loyal, and laboring -- and never be trashed by the media as a bigot. This is key. But then he could go on to welcome those immigrants who want to become Americans, because he believes this is the greatest country in the history of the world.
Rubio could cut deeply into Obama's base with epochal voters. No other Republican can do that. And he would retain the support of conservatives because of his record, his character, and his convictions.
Bill Clinton went to Florida in the waning days of the 2010 campaign. He had only one goal: To try to persuade Rep. Kendrick Meek to drop out of the race against Rubio. We may hate Bill Clinton's gaudy guts, but no one ever accused Bubba of not being a shrewd political operator.
The liberals did not fear Sharron Angle or Joe Miller. They didn't fear Rand Paul or Mike Lee. But they feared -- and they still fear -- Marco Rubio. They know that his election would mean the end of their dominance. They know he could create a new conservative coalition.
We obviously don't want to nominate a candidate only because he appeals to epochal voters. In many ways, their goals are not ours. Still, Ronald Reagan appealed to 96% of Republicans while reaching out to 24% of Democrats. He had to be doing something right.
The fact that all our horses are balking at the starting gate for the 2012 derby, that none of them breaks 25% even among Republican voters, and that a billionaire who lavished political contributions to Kennedys, Schumers, and Rangels is now polling in second place proves we need help.
Everyone says Sen. Rubio is a rising star. Many have said he will be president someday.
But with the deficit rising faster every month under Obama than during Bush's worst year, we are running out of future fast.
If we get behind a movement to draft Sen. Marco Rubio in 2012, then maybe we can be the epochal voters of 2012. We can bring the change the country needs. Let's hope.
Supporters of www.draftmarcorubio.com are asking conservatives to donate $20.12 to Rubio's website and to send emails to Sen. Jim DeMint asking the stalwart South Carolinian conservative to appeal to Rubio to enter the race.