Breaking: Cheney endorses Rubio

posted at 10:18 am on April 22, 2010 by Ed Morrissey

Dick Cheney decided to make a splash in Florida today by endorsing Marco Rubio over Charlie Crist in the GOP primary for the US Senate.  Cheney explained that Crist can’t be trusted to remain firm on principle, and that Floridians need a strong conservative leader:

Former Vice President Dick Cheney is endorsing Marco Rubio in Florida’s GOP Senate primary, saying Gov. Charlie Crist can’t be trusted to stand up to President Barack Obama’s agenda.

It’s the latest high-profile endorsement for Rubio. Cheney called him a strong conservative leader.

Rick Klein at ABC’s The Note tweeted this quote from the former VP: “”Congress is already overflowing with politicians who need pollsters to tell them what to think.” Crist’s sudden Hamlet act on an independent run has left him open to this criticism, and he should expect more of it between now and the April 30th deadline for filing candidacy papers.

Crist could, of course, hope that support from conservatives like Cheney and Sarah Palin would marginalize Rubio. Rasmussen’s latest survey of likely voters in Florida suggests that Crist might have a long wait for that:

The latest Rasmussen Reports poll of Florida voters finds that 37% would vote for GOP frontrunner Marco Rubio, 30% for Crist and 22% for the likely Democratic nominee Kendrick Meek. That’s much closer than a month ago when Rubio had a 17-point advantage and Crist was in third place.

In a two-way race, both Rubio and Crist hold solid leads over Meek. Rubio now leads among Republicans and unaffiliated voters with Crist in second. Among Democrats, Meek earns 46% support, while Crist picks up 33% of the Democratic vote.

Meek leads among voters under 30, Crist leads among 30-somethings, and Rubio leads among those 40 and older.

The crosstabs show just how difficult this will be to pull off. To no one’s great surprise, Rubio wins Republicans in a three-way race, but he also wins independents, 40-28 over Crist, with Meek getting just 18%. Rubio wins the male vote easily, 45/31/16, but also edges out Crist and Meek with women, 30/28/28.

Interestingly but perhaps not terribly surprisingly, Rubio’s success depends on the intensity of disapproval for Barack Obama. He wins 67% of those who strongly disapprove of Obama, but only 22% of those who “somewhat disapprove.” Crist gains 54% of that demographic. Crist also leads among those who “somewhat approve” of Obama, 45% to Meek’s 38% and Rubio’s 10%, but Meek gets the edge among those who strongly approve of Obama, 44% to Crist’s 35% and a near-zero for Rubio.

What does it say about Crist that those who strongly approve of Obama’s performance still support Crist so strongly? Better yet, what does that say about Kendrick Meek? Small wonder he trails so badly in all permutations of this race.


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Comments

Crist is toast

blatantblue on April 22, 2010 at 10:21 AM

Yesssss!

Babino on April 22, 2010 at 10:21 AM

Worse, he’s cold, dry unappetizing toast

MainelyRight on April 22, 2010 at 10:22 AM

Snooki Crist needs to take a deep breath, start thinking conservative thoughts, and wait for 2012 — when he can run against the Democrat and the wildly unpopular President.

I propose that he strike this pose: “I was very optimistic about President Obama, and believed that he was sincere about the promises he made during his campaign, but he has turned out to be a divisive President, a 1960s style left winger, and a disaster for America.”

That one’s on the house, Snooki. If you want the whole enchilada, call my people.

Jaibones on April 22, 2010 at 10:25 AM

Crist is probably a decent fellow. He just got inebriated by the power, and now he’s like the drunk guy at the bar in the wee hours – feverishly looking for someone – anyone – who will canoodle with him.

SlimyBill on April 22, 2010 at 10:25 AM

Hot Dog! Finally Cheney gets it! Or does this mean that Rubio is an establisment Republican?

BetseyRoss on April 22, 2010 at 10:26 AM

will this make that hat taste any better JetBoy?//

ted c on April 22, 2010 at 10:27 AM

To quote Die Hard….”Oh my god…the orange guy is TOAST!”

search4truth on April 22, 2010 at 10:28 AM

I demand jetboy put hot hot chili pepper on his hat!!!

blatantblue on April 22, 2010 at 10:28 AM

Crist has tried to outmaneuver Rubio and has only maneuvered himself right out of this race.

Marginalized.

Crist is as doomed as an unwrapped Wonka bar lying in a Tallahassee parking lot during a mid-July afternoon….

melting…

ted c on April 22, 2010 at 10:28 AM

Buh-bye now, Charlie.

Ward Cleaver on April 22, 2010 at 10:29 AM

Florida GOP please just buy Crist off. I don’t want another Scozzafava situation. Promise him Party elder status or something nice sounding and powerless like that. Just don’t let him split the Republican vote in November.

Speedwagon82 on April 22, 2010 at 10:29 AM

schweet…

moonbatkiller on April 22, 2010 at 10:29 AM

I miss voting for Cheney.

Vashta.Nerada on April 22, 2010 at 10:30 AM

I demand jetboy put hot hot chili pepper on his hat!!!

blatantblue on April 22, 2010 at 10:28 AM

Maybe some orange marmalade.

SHARPTOOTH on April 22, 2010 at 10:30 AM

Mavtastic!

beatcanvas on April 22, 2010 at 10:32 AM

Latest breaking…

Elizabetty endorses Cheney’s endorsement of Rubio.

Elizabetty on April 22, 2010 at 10:32 AM

will this make that hat taste any better JetBoy?//

ted c on April 22, 2010 at 10:27 AM

What, Cheney’s endorsement is supposed to guarantee a Rubio win?

I’m certainly not dissing Cheney, but remember, Crist has to run indy for that hat-eatin’. And again, it ain’t gonna happen.

Not for nothing, but all this anti-Cristness of HA the last week is a bit disheartening…from both Ed and AP. It’s like a Rubio cheer squad fer cripes sake.

I can remember not too long ago a whole lotta peeps giving Allah grief for posting a string of threads that didn’t source unquestionable praise for a certain former Alaska governor. But I’ll rise above that…

JetBoy on April 22, 2010 at 10:32 AM

Hard to believe Rasmussen has it that close. Crist better read the handwriting on the wall and bow out.

sandee on April 22, 2010 at 10:33 AM

But I’ll rise above that…

JetBoy on April 22, 2010 at 10:32 AM

okay… tell us how that hat tastes up on that moral high ground, k?//

ted c on April 22, 2010 at 10:34 AM

Meek leads among voters under 30,

At 29, I never thought I’d say this, but I can’t wait to turn 30. I’ve been disgusted with my age group for a decade now.

Daemonocracy on April 22, 2010 at 10:34 AM

If only we could get Obama to campaign for Crist, his fellow man of color.

TXUS on April 22, 2010 at 10:34 AM

Why are we so excited about a guy with so much dirty laundry like Rubio? I know that Crist is out of the question but endorsing Rubio may become a big mistake soon.

iam7545 on April 22, 2010 at 10:35 AM

But I’ll rise above that…

JetBoy on April 22, 2010 at 10:32 AM

You know, when Cristinistas b*tch and moan, it’s almost as bad as when the Palinistas do it.

myrenovations on April 22, 2010 at 10:36 AM

In the era of the professional politician, what else can Crist do but double down on his electoral aspirations? What did he do before he was a politician?

To “spend more time with his family” seems an unappetizing alternative.

marybel on April 22, 2010 at 10:37 AM

…endorsing Rubio may become a big mistake soon.

iam7545 on April 22, 2010 at 10:35 AM

Exactly my point in all this. Thank you!

Be careful what you wish for…

JetBoy on April 22, 2010 at 10:37 AM

Bravo Zulu to VP Cheney!. I would now like to see him endorse JD so that we can rid the Capitol of McLame.

hawkman on April 22, 2010 at 10:38 AM

awesome :0)
Marco is my first conservative, lol..
sent him a few more dilly dollars just this week…

ginaswo on April 22, 2010 at 10:38 AM

Rubio does not have dirty laundry. What he does have are political opponents who are dirty liars.

Emperor Norton on April 22, 2010 at 10:39 AM

I’m waaiting for all of you to criticize Cheney the way you criticized Romney – (remember?) jumping on the band wagon etc., etc. I only hope Rubio is a good guy and is a new start for the old republican guard.

Bambi on April 22, 2010 at 10:39 AM

Sweet!

ohiobabe on April 22, 2010 at 10:40 AM

I think we all understand that no one, much less a politician, is perfect. But that doesn’t stop us from cheering on someone who actually appears to share our ideals. Crist is a flopper and continues to show that his job is to stay employed, not to help the people who elected him. Rubio isn’t the second coming, just a man who shares the conservative values we desire.

search4truth on April 22, 2010 at 10:51 AM

Yesterday I was pretty sure Crist was going to go independent. If his internal polling looks like those Rasmussen numbers, he’s got to be rethinking that decision. Or at least, one would hope.

Slublog on April 22, 2010 at 10:52 AM

VP Cheney the only true Conservative that was in the Bush adm.Good for him.

thmcbb on April 22, 2010 at 10:53 AM

Rubio does not have dirty laundry. What he does have are political opponents who are dirty liars.

Emperor Norton

Lame Stream Media outlets are so anti-Marco that they run blatant falsehoods and base canards–yet, there are those who will believe them still. St. Pete Times runs low-grade cow pies on Rubio and praises Suntan Charlie like he’s the second coming. THAT alone should be the obit for Charlie’s political career. A good rule of thumb: if the SPT is for someone, vote against them because they are probably crooked or socialist, or both.

Crusader Rabbit on April 22, 2010 at 10:55 AM

Why are we so excited about a guy with so much dirty laundry like Rubio? I know that Crist is out of the question but endorsing Rubio may become a big mistake soon.

iam7545 on April 22, 2010 at 10:35 AM

If Crist has such dirt on Rubio, why wouldn’t he have unveiled it by now? Why would he even consider going Indy if he could stick a fork in him and own the Repub nomination?

Patrick S on April 22, 2010 at 10:58 AM

Crist’s sudden Hamlet act

Nice one, Ed.

mikeyboss on April 22, 2010 at 11:02 AM

Charlie like he’s the second coming. THAT alone should be the obit for Charlie’s political career. A good …

lol, don’t forget Keith Olbermann’s new romance with Charlie, the “respected governor”

Marcus on April 22, 2010 at 11:02 AM

If Crist has such dirt on Rubio, why wouldn’t he have unveiled it by now? Why would he even consider going Indy if he could stick a fork in him and own the Repub nomination?

Patrick S on April 22, 2010 at 10:58 AM

He wouldn’t unveil it because it might hurt him too. That doesn’t mean the MSM won’t.

Speedwagon82 on April 22, 2010 at 11:05 AM

yawn…

gatorboy on April 22, 2010 at 11:13 AM

From the notepad of Charlie Crist

My Future Job Prospects:

1. FL Governor
2. FL’s U.S. Senator
3. Any elected office
4. Syracuse Sycacuse University mascot
5. Willy Wonka’s chocolate factory
6. Jersey Shore 4

red winger on April 22, 2010 at 11:15 AM

This would have been an “endorsement” two months ago.

Today, it’s just jumping on the bandwagon.

logis on April 22, 2010 at 11:16 AM

From the notepad of Charlie Crist

My Future Job Prospects:

1. FL Governor
2. FL’s U.S. Senator
3. Any elected office
4. Syracuse Sycacuse University mascot

5. Willy Wonka’s chocolate factory
6. Jersey Shore 4

red winger on April 22, 2010 at 11:15 AM

Running around in an Orange suit would at least have a Florida tie-in…

jon1979 on April 22, 2010 at 11:20 AM

Maybe some orange marmalade.

SHARPTOOTH on April 22, 2010 at 10:30 AM

Yeah, I can see Jetboy being Paddington Bear.

portlandon on April 22, 2010 at 11:21 AM

Does this mean that Crist will no longer have to pay the tanning bed tax?

faraway on April 22, 2010 at 11:21 AM

This would have been an “endorsement” two months ago.

Today, it’s just jumping on the bandwagon.

logis on April 22, 2010 at 11:16 AM

+1

gatorboy on April 22, 2010 at 11:24 AM

Doncha just love it when one of the old warrior elephants decides to teach the younger ones what it’s really all about?

Smart minds shut up when wisdom clears its throat to speak.

platypus on April 22, 2010 at 11:24 AM

“What does it say about Crist that those who strongly approve of Obama’s performance still support Crist so strongly? Better yet, what does that say about Kendrick Meek? Small wonder he trails so badly in all permutations of this race”

..maybe they could get a two-fer from TEH SUPREME PANTLOAD having Obama come to Florida to campaign for Meek and Crist.

..a double toilet-flush.

The War Planner on April 22, 2010 at 11:27 AM

Hard to believe Rasmussen has it that close. Crist better read the handwriting on the wall and bow out.

sandee on April 22, 2010 at 10:33 AM

After the Q-poll showed Crist leading by 2 points in a three-way race, this Rasmussen poll showing Crist trailing by 7 points is like a cold shower.

The Rasmussen poll was taken BEFORE Cheney’s endorsement, but if Crist actually announces as an Independent, any of Crist’s remaining Republican support will flee to Rubio, the “official” Republican nominee, who will probably be well over 40% in a three-way race, since he already gets 40% of Independent voters.

The final shoe to drop: What will Jeb do? Crist was Jeb Bush’s anointed successor, and may soon stab the party in the back. If Jeb Bush endorses Rubio, it’s over.

Steve Z on April 22, 2010 at 12:02 PM

Running around in an Orange suit would at least have a Florida tie-in…

jon1979 on April 22, 2010 at 11:20 AM

The ol’ lame-duck Gov can still flip the coin at the Orange Bowl.

Steve Z on April 22, 2010 at 12:04 PM

Come to the Dark Side, Marco. I am your father.

SurferDoc on April 22, 2010 at 12:09 PM

Ho

t Dog! Finally Cheney gets it! Or does this mean that Rubio is an establisment Republican?

BetseyRoss on April 22, 2010 at 10:26 AM

Ironically it probably means Cheney needs a poll to tell him who to endorse.

I have no illusions about politicians… I do think Cheney is great… I’d vote for him for President–on any Tuesday in November–of any year.

But he is a politician.

petunia on April 22, 2010 at 12:23 PM

Come to the Dark Side, Marco. I am your father.

SurferDoc on April 22, 2010 at 12:09 PM

The force is strong with this one… he’s turned the Sith Lord to his side!

petunia on April 22, 2010 at 12:25 PM

JetBoy on April 22, 2010 at 10:32 AM

Here’s an idea: Start manufacturing edible hats and sell them in Florida. I’m sure you aren’t alone.

petunia on April 22, 2010 at 12:29 PM

The final shoe to drop: What will Jeb do? Crist was Jeb Bush’s anointed successor, and may soon stab the party in the back. If Jeb Bush endorses Rubio, it’s over.

Steve Z on April 22, 2010 at 12:02 PM

It’s been widely rumoured for 6 months that Jeb has not liked Crist’s performance as Governor. Especially in education (Jeb’s policy specialty) where Crist had reversed some of Jeb’s education policies even before last weeks veto… Jeb is duly proud of Florida’s advancement in nationwide K-12 education rankings.

In 1998, when Bush took office, Florida’s fourth-graders ranked 33rd out of 39 states on the reading portion of the National Assessment of Educational Progress test, which measures student performance nationwide. That year, 53 percent of the state’s fourth-graders rated at basic or better in reading.

In 2003, 63 percent of Florida’s fourth-graders tested at that level.

or from a more recent article on Florida school performance

Governor Charlie Crist today announced that Florida’s decade of educational progress continued this year with a jump to 8th in the nation on the 2010 Quality Counts: Fresh Course, Swift Current report. Issued annually by Education Week, the report tracks state policies and performance across key areas of education and assigns each state with an overall point total to signify their education standing in the nation. This year’s increase follows continuing trends of improvement that saw the Sunshine State ranked 10th last year and 14th in 2008, up from 31st in 2007.

This is all while spending levels were around 39th in country…

phreshone on April 22, 2010 at 12:31 PM

Who cares? He also endorsed that loser from Texas Hutchinson.

Blake on April 22, 2010 at 12:50 PM

Allahpundit, please retract your comment about Sarah Palin “supporting” Marco Rubio. Officially, Palin has done no such thing. All she has done is to suggest Marco “call her”.

technopeasant on April 22, 2010 at 12:57 PM

clincher.

maynila on April 22, 2010 at 1:02 PM

Running around in an Orange suit would at least have a Florida tie-in…

jon1979 on April 22, 2010 at 11:20 AM

University of Tennessee mascot or checkerboard in the endzone.

hip shot on April 22, 2010 at 1:48 PM

“I find your lack of conservatism disturbing.”

/darthcheney

CurtZHP on April 22, 2010 at 2:58 PM

Crist could, of course, hope that support from conservatives like Cheney and Sarah Palin would marginalize Rubio.

I don’t think this will happen. In fact, I am sure that a lot of Republicans who supported Crist because they thought he was a shoe in are wishing they had waited awhile to take sides. I really thought that Crist was popular enough to pull this off, but voter angst is so strong that his ties to Obama are going to do him in. This just goes to show how long a year is in politics.

In fact, it might also be a warning to people who are already trying to pick the next GOP nominee..anything can happen in a year.

Terrye on April 22, 2010 at 3:28 PM

CurtZHP on April 22, 2010 at 2:58 PM

Hahahahahaha! Orange you glad for Darth Cheney! I am! Tang (instead of Dang, get it?)!

margategop517 on April 22, 2010 at 3:28 PM

I don’t believe Sarah has officially endorsed Rubio but they are playing this call me bit I don’t get… Palin seems reluctant. Cheney’s endorsement has probably been given now because of Crist’s indie talk… seems like a shot across the bow sort of thing..

CCRWM on April 22, 2010 at 6:39 PM