The Phony Campaign

2015-02-01 Update

[phony baloney]

For some inexplicable reason, Mitt Romney's odds of being elected President have gone very long at Betfair. So he has been dropped from our tabulation:

Query String Hit Count Change Since
"Jeb Bush" phony 3,550,000 +2,801,000
"Hillary Clinton" phony 390,000 +4,000
"Rand Paul" phony 170,000 +11,000
"Chris Christie" phony 129,000 +8,000
"Scott Walker" phony 95,900 +19,100
"Elizabeth Warren" phony 89,100 -1,900
"Marco Rubio" phony 86,800 +2,500

That's quite a phony bump for Jeb this week; based on past experience it's more than likely one of those inexplicable Google Glitches, and he'll be back in the pack next time we look.

But what else is going on in the world of Presidential Political Phoniness?

  • Okay, one last shot at Mitt, from a January 27 WaPo story about the campaign that wasn't:

    If he runs again in 2016, Romney is determined to rebrand himself as authentic, warts and all, and central to that mission is making public what for so long he kept private.

    Not for the first time (or the last), we'll quote Jean Giraudoux: "The secret of success is sincerity. Once you can fake that you've got it made." If only Mitt had figured this out four years ago!

  • Mike Huckabee does not, as I type, have odds at Betfair, but Indispensable Geraghty notes that his "homespun schtick" is getting on some peoples' nerves. Charles C. W. Cooke is quoted, from his article on Huckabee's "cornpone politics":

    Unlike so many in Washington, Huckabee claims, he is firmly on the side of “Bubbaville” rather than “Bubbleville”; of the “catfish and cornbread crowd” rather than “the crepes and caviar set”; and of those who “come home tired at the end of the day” rather than those who “burn tires in the street.” Are you tired of the incumbent set? he seems to ask. Then you know what to do.

    Geraghty goes on to note some facts in discord with Huckabee's trying to paint himself as jes' folks: his $2.8 million Florida beachfront house; his recently-concluded $500K contract with Fox News; his $50K+ speaking fee; his PAC that doles out $400K in salaries to his extended family while providing a relative pittance in support of GOP candidates.

  • Rand Paul posted a fake transcript of a phone call between Jeb and Hillary. In this vein:

    Hillary: Well you're right...Maybe we can work something out…we both agree on so many issues! Bigger government, common core, and amnesty for illegal immigrants!

    Jeb: Well, we've both got problems... you've got problems with the grassroots and I've got all those damn conservatives. What say, we make a deal

    Everyone says it's fake, anyway. I'm not too sure.

  • And more news from the Democratic side:

    A group of major liberal donors who want Elizabeth Warren to run for president have paid for a poll intended to show that Hillary Clinton does not excite the Democratic base and would be vulnerable in a 2016 general election.

    Shadowy fat cats trying to push their radical agenda by torpedoing a mainstream candidate? That would be real alarming news if they were Republicans!

    [Update 2017-11-29: wow, that turned out to be prescient! Vulnerable even to Trump!]

Last Modified 2017-11-29 4:12 PM EDT