The 2016 race is over. I mean the primary race on the Republican side. Senator Marco Rubio will be the GOP nominee.
How do I know this? Because Rubio was allowed to vote against the fiscal cliff deal. Moreover, a number of stories have made it clear that Rubio will henceforward be allowed to compile a record designed to appease red-meat Republican primary voters.
That means he's the guy
Smart move, from the GOP standpoint. Rubio will increase the brand's appeal to Hispanics. Since black turnout probably won't be as high as it was in 2008 and 2012, the Republicans stand a very good chance of winning.
As for the fiscal cliff thingie: I still don't think the House will go for any deal. The deal doesn't actually save all that much money compared to the alternative
. And it is clear that the GOP is simply too fractured and unruly
Personally, I don't think that this is the time for austerity. I know it seems counter-intuitive, but the time to tighten belts is when the jobs are plentiful and the money is flowing. When an economy is stuck, you prime the pump. That's basic Keynesianism.
Still, if we are going to do the austerity thing, then let's at least go for some real savings and real revenue increases. I've been reading articles bewailing the fact that an individual earning $50,000 a year might have to pay an extra thousand in taxes. Well, Mr. 50K should have thought about his tax bill when he voted for a president who authorized a needless war in Iraq. (Cost: $4 trillion.)