Marco Rubio: I can’t believe the damned media is talking about my damned boots

posted at 4:01 pm on January 7, 2016 by Allahpundit

Consider this progress. Typically it’s only women candidates who are scrutinized for their fashion choices.

I skipped Bootgate yesterday because it was too stupid even for me, but on a slow news day, if Rubio’s going to talk about it, I guess we’ll talk about it.

“Let me get this right. ISIS is cutting people’s heads off, setting people on fire in cages, Saudi Arabia and Iran on the verge of a war, the Chinese are landing airplanes on islands that they built and say belong to them and what are international waters and in some ways territorial waters, our economy is flat-lined, the stock market is falling apart, but boy are we getting a lot of coverage about a pair of boots,” he said Thursday, grinning. “This is craziness. Have people lost their minds?”

Rubio was responding to a member of the audience — who said he is still undecided — during his rally in New Hampshire who said he was glad the Florida senator made “a better shoe choice today.” (Rubio was not wearing the infamous boots.)

“I’ve gotten a chuckle out of it. Who knows, they may make a comeback here soon. Stay tuned,” Rubio warned.

Here’s what the fuss is all about. It’s true that the media, specifically a reporter from (where else?) the New York Times, got the ball rolling, but I think this tweet from a non-journalist is what got under Rubio’s skin:

Rick Tyler is Ted Cruz’s national spokesman. Team Cruz wasn’t the only campaign to jab Rubio over the boots — Rand Paul, Jeb Bush, and Carly Fiorina teased him too — but the line about “high-heeled booties” was the most cutting. Lefty Jonathan Chait has something of a point here:

[Rubio] avoids gratuitous demonstrations of anger, speaking optimistically and sometimes even gently. If it works, Rubio’s strategy will make him more popular in a general election, encouraging Republican insiders to rally around him, thereby increasing his chances of winning the nomination…

The weakness in Rubio’s strategy is that it leaves him out of step with the mood among the base. That is what his rivals are attempting to exploit. Specifically, they are trying to make Rubio’s boots imply something deeper about his character: that he is a lightweight, unmanly, lacking the angry urgency needed at the moment. The boots are a synecdoche. Sunny and optimistic can be turned into callow, naïve, and even effeminate.

Ted Cruz wears cowboy boots; Rubio wears high-heeled booties, like girls do. Here’s Rand Paul amplifying the idea:

Populist conservatives are from Mars, moderate establishmentarians are from Venus. Kevin Williamson has written several fun, characteristically acidic diagnoses of Trumpmania that zero in on how important Trump’s alpha-male virility seems to be to some of his fervent supporters, but the idea on the right that populism is manly and conservative while elitism is effeminate and left-ish goes way beyond Trump. I think it’s mostly a function of geographical stereotypes: Grassroots conservatives come from rural “real America,” where people work hard for their money, while moderate Republicans come from soft blue states and push paper in banks, law firms, and so on. Populists like guns and fight for what they believe; moderates fear guns because they fear confrontation and prefer to compromise. Populists don’t worry about silly superficial things like fashion; moderates care about nothing more than how they’re perceived. Rubio is seen as the establishment’s best hope and so anything he does to play into the “moderate” stereotype is going to be broadcast by his populist critics as proof that he’s every bit the candy-ass RINO that they say. The boots, supposedly soft and girly and evidence of how much he cares about being fashionable, are part of the picture. (Rubio may, in fact, be talking tougher on the trail lately precisely because he’s worried about being seen as too “soft.”) God help this poor bastard if he gets caught showing up to a Beltway cocktail party sometime in the next five months. We’ll never hear the end of it. Free advice for Rubio: If you do go to one, at least make sure you drink beer, not wine. And drink it straight from the bottle. Beer glasses are for sissies.

Here’s the media, including veteran Rubio-hater Joe Scarborough, enjoying some euphemistic “sissy” fun at Rubio’s expense. Kind of weird that Trump, King Alpha, hasn’t joined in. Maybe Rubio’s far enough back in the polls that he doesn’t care.



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Comment pages: 1 2

Also, petunia is another commenter here at HA. You may be confused.

CivilDiscourse on January 7, 2016 at 6:23 PM

Sigh, some folks just don’t when to shush. Right there is a tell.

Back it down a bit, your slip is showing.

HonestLib on January 7, 2016 at 6:34 PM

HonestLib
A tell of what, do you suppose? Did you have any questions that need answering, as well? I may answer, if you ask nicely.

CivilDiscourse on January 7, 2016 at 6:38 PM

Is Rubio still running?

newarker on January 7, 2016 at 7:13 PM

I have to admit that I did laugh over Christie’s sorry socks.

onlineanalyst on January 7, 2016 at 7:26 PM

Rubio’s problem is that he didn’t “own” those boots. He should have accessorized them with skinny jeans, a vest, and maybe a fedora.

Happy Nomad on January 7, 2016 at 7:45 PM

Happy Nomad
+1

CivilDiscourse on January 7, 2016 at 7:52 PM

That style was good enough for the Beatles.

digitalhap on January 7, 2016 at 7:55 PM

I strode purposefully, parasol held high to shield me from the savage Arizona sun, down the dusty path towards the dilapidated shack that purported to be the office of this “ranchero” as the natives say, marvelling at the auto-voiture tyres carefully arrayed on the roof to keep the tin roof from blowing away.

Navigating the rickety stairs I stepped over an old what I could only imagine was a dog, though it appeared to be more mange and fleas than dog, and boldy strode through the door, eager to try to secure my first employment.

Alas, there was only one, what I will charitably call a gentleman, in the place, a rangy fellow, appearearing to be asleep slumped in a chair, with a sweat stained hat pulled over his eyes and spittle running down his chin. Frankly, it appeared as if he and a bathtub were far from even being passing acquaintances.

“Ahem”, I ahemed. Alas, there was no response. “My good man, mighn’t you assist me ?”. That appeard to rouse this old “cowpoker” as the natives say, from his stupor.

“Well, ain’t you a purdy little lady all dressed up all fancy and all like that,” this crude ruben said. “My good fellow, I’ll have you know I am Pamela Smith-Plushbottom of the Boston Smith-Plushbottoms”, I replied. “Well, ain’t that swell, I am Lemuel Weldtub of the Conuhatchee Crick, Alabama, Weldtubs, what is it you are a-wantin’? ” this crude creature from the backwoods asked.

“I am here to seek emplyment”, I replied. That caused a spasm of laughter from this “Lemuel” whereupon he let fly with a prodigious amount of brownish spittle towards a spitton. Of course, this missed, and nearly splashed on my high top button up Manolos. When his seizure of laughter subsided, he asked, “Petunia, what are you going to do here ?”.

I was shocked – this inbred with perhaps three teeth in his entire family, who didn’t know Lacan from a lemur, was questioning me ! “I’ll have you knw, “Sir”, that I have in my portmandeau a diploma conferring on me a degree in Feminst Perspectives on Lesbian topics in Icelandic Eddas”.

“Well, ain’t that special,” he replied, “what are you going to when you step in a cow pie in then thar fancy high top button up shoes ?”

Cow pie ? What ever was he taliking about – perhaps a beef Wellington ?

“My good man, why would I step in a beef Wellington”

“Little lady, I don’t know what a beef Wellington is where y’all come from, but I am talking about cow flop.”

Cow flop ? A fallen cow ? “Why would I step on a poor fallen cow ?”

“No lady, cow flow, you know cow $hit, cow poop, we have steaming piles of it here.”

I was aghast at the crudity ! I almost felt myself about to take the vapors, but regained myself.

“Were that dreadful occurance to transpire, I would have my man clean my shoes, of course !”

Lemuel then broke down in another paroxysm of laughter so hard he broke three ribs.

I, however, had the last laugh. Appalled by this rude bumpkin, I sent daddikins a Western Union and had him buy the “ranchero”, so I could become Lemuel’s boss, or “hacienda” as the natives say.

F X Muldoon on January 7, 2016 at 8:07 PM

Kevin Williamson has written several fun spittle-flecked, characteristically acidic dishonest diagnoses of Trumpmania that zero in on how important Trump’s alpha-male virility seems to be to some of his fervent supporters, but the idea on the right that populism is manly and conservative while elitism is effeminate and left-ish goes way beyond Trump.

Williamson and AP (and Rich Lowry) have been extremely fixated on this “masculinity” angle from the start, but I think that it is really more or less of a strawman, something that Williamson truly excels in constructing.

When someone goes “wow so and so sure has big balls”; that isn’t supposed to be taken literally as in “wow he has large testicles”, but I think that Williamson views it in that way.

It is more of a way of saying that someone is fearless in expressing things; a woman could have “big balls” in this sense.

Williamson’s Trump articles about masculinity vs. femininity in “The Village People” and similar topics had very little to to do with what is going in the race, which is why National Review’s obsessive Trump coverage has had zero impact; if anything it backfired by making Trump more anti-establishment.

Redstone on January 7, 2016 at 8:41 PM

but the idea on the right that populism is manly and conservative while elitism is effeminate and left-ish goes way beyond Trump.

This is also probably largely due to “National Review”; people associate establishment pundits with Charles Cooke, George Will, etc., and any observer would view them as extremely effete in their presentation and style.

“Populist pundists” seem to be mostly female, like Ann Coulter or Laura Ingraham, but they easily “out alpha” someone like Lowry or Cooke when paired against them on TV.

The “populist” argument simply has more credibility at the moment due to the failures of the last 15 years.

Redstone on January 7, 2016 at 8:48 PM

Also, the media always hypes up nonsense Rubio controversies like this one and downplays serious ones in order to make any criticism of Rubio look unreasonable.

No one would care about Rubio’s high heel boots if he wasn’t such a radical amnesty warrior and hadn’t borrowed Lindsey Graham’s foreign policy.

Redstone on January 7, 2016 at 8:59 PM

Too stupid to comment on.

AP, correction – Rubio wasn’t talking about the boots, he was commenting on how stupid it was that people were talking about his boots #finerpointsmatter

sheryl on January 7, 2016 at 9:04 PM

FX
Is that your own fan-fic, or…?

Is it so hard to believe that what I wrote would happen in a real-life situation? Again, what would be the purpose of fabricating the story? Do you live such a dull life that nothing of interest happens to you?

Again, I ask—which part is difficult for you to believe? AZ? The ranch? The employee? The conversation? That I was hired? That I ended up his boss?

CivilDiscourse on January 7, 2016 at 9:09 PM

Again, what would be the purpose of fabricating the story?

“I remember landing under sniper fire. There was supposed to be some kind of a greeting ceremony at the airport, but instead we just ran with our heads down to get into the vehicles to get to our base.”

F X Muldoon on January 7, 2016 at 9:20 PM

FX

Sorry, I said I had conversation with a dude on a ranch during an interview, not that I landed under sniper fire. You’re welcome to tell me what you don’t believe, or ask questions to help you understand this really very simple story. Or you can keep trolling. Whatever you like.

CivilDiscourse on January 7, 2016 at 9:48 PM

Sorry, I said I had conversation with a dude on a ranch during an interview, not that I landed under sniper fire.

Yes, and unless you are denser than depleted uranium, you can a), quit pretending you didn’t get my point, and b), like H>illary!™, quit making up tales to try to make yourself and others believe you are something you are not.

F X Muldoon on January 7, 2016 at 9:57 PM

Rubio’s short and likes to wear Cuban heels.

Marlow on January 7, 2016 at 9:58 PM

FX

Say, I just read over your little vignette again—perhaps you did actually write it after all? I mean, you misspelled portmanteau, but other than that, it’s pretty darn good. Remarkable effort for a HA comment. You’re quite the creative writer. Scenic detail, (somewhat strained but decent) dialog, the works. Hats off to you, sir.

But again, I would never show the disdain for the employee that you did in your scene. That’s your projection. But great draft in any case; maybe take it to a writing workshop to polish it up a bit?

CivilDiscourse on January 7, 2016 at 10:02 PM

FX
I’m not making up a thing. Sorry about your cynicism. I’m not sure what sort of character my little anecdote would be building, exactly, in your eyes, or what you think I’d be trying to make others believe by it—other than it was a thing that happened to me that I thought appropriate to the article—but, like I said, your incredulity can’t be helped. I’d be happy to answer any questions you might have about the situation that may help your disbelief (as far as reasonable privacy and circumspection would allow), but otherwise, c’est la vie.

CivilDiscourse on January 7, 2016 at 10:09 PM

lol, just went back and looked at the screen cap. Boots are fine…wore them myself until the late eighties. and as someone upthread said about HR or professor. That wasn’t me. Had a man job. Anyway Marco’s tight little pants and pretty blue sweater just screams “macho, mijo, mucho, puto.

arnold ziffel on January 7, 2016 at 10:13 PM

Oh, FX, I know you spent a lot of time on your story effort, so I’m happy to give some feedback. There’s pretty good scenic setting, but the characterization’s a little flat, and the denouement is rushed. Overall solid effort. Depending on your level, I’d say it definitely merits a passing grade. College freshman, B+—anything higher than that is a C.

CivilDiscourse on January 7, 2016 at 10:20 PM

Best line: “…didn’t know Lacan from a lemur …” Really, it’s good stuff. Keep at it—you show great promise!

CivilDiscourse on January 7, 2016 at 10:24 PM

perhaps you did actually write it after all?

Sprung, as if Athena from the head of Zeus himself.

I would never show the disdain for the employee that you did in your scene. That’s your projection.

Lighten up, Francis; it must suck to go through life as a humorless scold. FWIW, my neighbor grows cotton, so I am deep in that part of civilized America you lot disdain, and your ears would melt if you heard how he and I make fun of each other – the stuff here ain’t nothin’.

F X Muldoon on January 7, 2016 at 10:27 PM

Oh, FX, I know you spent a lot of time on your story effort…

Once again, you flatter yourself, unless you think 5 minutes is a lot of time, I don’t type fast at all.

…so I’m happy to give some feedback.

Don’t put yourself out, when I want your opinion, I’ll give it to you.

F X Muldoon on January 7, 2016 at 10:33 PM

FX
Nice; I also used to live in the south—Pensacola, which is (or was, then) about as the “South” as you can get in FL. As far as me “disdaining” it or the people there, I can simply say that I don’t think you know enough about me to think that, seeing as I have friends and family still there and all. And as for humor, you should try me, I’ve got a pretty good sense for it. Calling somebody a liar for sharing a simple (and true) anecdote does tend to dampen humor, though, in my experience.

CivilDiscourse on January 7, 2016 at 10:37 PM

I’ll take Marco’s fashion fails instead of Trump being a 3 times married man or Jeb being a terrible candidate or Rand being ……rand. Silly season is deadly.

AYNBLAND on January 7, 2016 at 11:50 PM

Too stupid to comment

sheryl on January 7, 2016 at 9:04 PM

#tellussomethingnew

Schadenfreude on January 8, 2016 at 12:37 AM

Beatle boots, elevator boots, gay boots.

Y’all got it all wrong.

The salient point is Latin. They are flamenco boots.

Younggod on January 8, 2016 at 6:08 AM

Populists don’t worry about silly superficial things like fashion…

Exactly. I’m not a big Rubio guy, but if I were him, I’d be sorely tempted to show up at the next rally in Birkenstocks and a tutu, just to make the point that I’m not so insecure about my manhood that it is threatened by what I wear.

If you really think it’s a valid point, try telling a Scotsman that he must be gay because he wears a skirt. Do yourself a favor, make a dentist’s appointment first, your teeth will likely need some work after.

GrumpyOldFart on January 8, 2016 at 8:09 AM

The heels on those boots look much like the ones on cowboy boots and doesn’t the Right love those?

katiejane on January 8, 2016 at 9:29 AM

Marco looks like he’s late to his Flamenco dancer lesson.

Kissmygrits on January 8, 2016 at 9:30 AM

So, the picture is tiny, but they only look like boots to me, and in different places around the country people wear different kinds of boots, in different fashion styles. I like Rubios ads currently running on my cable channel, he sounds really good, and so pro traditional American. Surely that is the reason to pick on what kind of water he drinks or whatever shoes Mrs. Rubio likes.

During the Scott Brown campaign there was a fuss made over the barn coat that he wore…this was harkening back to one of the candidates, perhaps it was Al Gore, had a Fashion Make over for the campaign. Why that barn coat? asked all the reporters…Brown said he did not know. Then he said, he got it for Christmas from one of the girls a few years back. Do you know the reporters had to have a half hour interview with the daughter to see if it was true? He might have been lying and wanting to look like a fashion model. Oh, yah, he used to be a fashion model.

The silly season.

Someday, if the current candidates don’t ruin him, I would like Rubio to be president. He is young, it can happen as long as the jealousies and egos of other GOP candidates can be kept under control. We probably need to fix the immigration abuse first. Looks like 20% of todays American workers are foreign born, according to a PEW study. And 98 million natural born citizens are without jobs. Right.

Fleuries on January 8, 2016 at 9:56 AM

I knew Rubio was a prissy rhino from day one.

gwhh on January 8, 2016 at 10:45 AM

Hey Marco, you should feel lucky. Obama was chosen because of the ‘neat crease’ in his pants. That means they like you.

geminicontender on January 8, 2016 at 11:18 AM

I have a pair just like them.

Buttercup on January 8, 2016 at 12:10 PM

At least the “Rubio wants to put Italian boots on the ground” joke writes itself.

pat buchanatar on January 8, 2016 at 12:49 PM

the Chinese are landing airplanes on islands that they built and say belong to them

That’s right Marco. The Chinese built them and they belong to China.

DarkCurrent on January 7, 2016 at 4:34 PM

If the Chinese build an island between Florida and Cuba, within US territorial waters, does it “belong to China,” as in Chinese territory?

Or are you being deliberately obtuse?

Or is there a third option that I’m not seeing?

GrumpyOldFart on January 8, 2016 at 7:42 PM

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