Here is something you need to know to this morning — Jeb Bush’s Super PAC ads have been terrible. They have not helped Jeb Bush at all. In fact, more Republican primary voters say they would never vote for Jeb Bush than say the same about Donald Trump.
Here is something else you should know — Team Bush premised his strategy on keeping Marco Rubio out of the race. Bush announced early that he intended to run, then stockpiled his Super PAC before having to cut off ties when formally announced, then saw Marco Rubio still get in. They are bitterly angry at Marco Rubio because they see his as a young, upstart Hispanic boy ungrateful to his patrician masters and they want to payback their “boy.”
For many of Mr. Bush’s longest-serving advisers, Mr. Rubio’s run is a personal betrayal: Mr. Bush backed Mr. Rubio’s bid for House speaker in Florida and persuaded important donors to endorse him for Senate. A few of Mr. Bush’s supporters have taken to calling Mr. Rubio “Judas.”
Leading this effort for Team Bush is Mike Murphy, who has decided to drop up to $20 million attacking Marco Rubio for being a conservative pro-lifer.
You read that right. Murphy’s genius plan is to go nuclear on Marco Rubio in states that have a moderate to liberal GOP voter influence and crush Rubio for being pro-life and conservative.
In an attempt to blunt Mr. Rubio’s appeal against a Democratic nominee, Mr. Murphy recently showed some Republicans a video portraying Mr. Rubio as too extreme on abortion. A longtime opponent of abortion rights, Mr. Rubio said in a debate in August that he had “never advocated” laws that would allow abortions, even in cases of rape or incest.
Mr. Murphy has privately said to several people that Right to Rise would be ready to devote up to $20 million to fighting Mr. Rubio, according to several people told of the conversations.
The effect of this will be to hand Ted Cruz the Republican nomination. Cruz is consolidating conservative support and is going to get a huge bounce into the SEC Primary on March 1st where he will have Texas, plus Georgia and other southern states before Rubio and Bush even get to Florida to battle it out. This effort by Murphy will just hurt Rubio in later states with sizable establishment leaning votes when Rubio needs to overcome the early Cruz lead.
Mike Murphy has built a machine to get Jeb Bush elected and cannot get it done. More and more Republican voters have decided they will never, ever support Jeb Bush. The Bush Super PAC ads have done nothing to boost Bush’s popularity. As revenge for their “boy” becoming his own man, Mike Murphy intends to destroy Marco Rubio. If Bush can’t get the nomination, they will make sure Marco Rubio can’t either.
Advantage: Ted Cruz.