This morning The Miami Herald ran a very chilling story asking "Is Gov. Rick Scott eyeing White House in 2012?" Amongst the evidence: his infatuation with federal issues, his appearances on Fox News, his apparent rivalry with other possible 2012 candidates, and his repeated attacks on Obama.
Though, Scott says he won't run, the very fact people are talking about it is still a bit spooky. But calm down children, we soon realized there's ten very good reason Scott just is not that kind of guy who will ever be able to succeed on the biggest stage in American politics.
10. That Whole Medicare Fraud Thing. Yeah, he might have been able to overcome that in a weird electoral cycle with Florida's increasingly depleted press corps, but we have a feeling that won't go over well with the scrutiny of national attention and the full power of the American press.
9. Would Anyone Have a Beer with This Guy? Apparently, this is now a thing in presidential politics, but ask yourself, would you really wanna hit a bar with Scott? Listen, we'd down brewskis with Mike Huckabee and then maybe have a guitar jam session. We'd gladly pop cold ones with Newt Gingrich. Hell, if Sarah Palin was doing keg stands we wouldn't miss it for the world. But if Scott called us up to hit a pub, well, we think we'd rather stay home and do our taxes or something.
8. He Has No Fundraising Experience. Financing your own gubernatorial bid is one thing, but mounting a bid for the highest office in the land requires fund raising. Most every other candidate Scott could face has a huge Rolodex of potential donors.
7. No Charisma. Running for president requires giving lots and lots of speeches. Have you seen Scott speak in front of a crowd? He sounds like he's giving a third grade book report.
6. He Hates the Press. Scott is clashing fiercely with Florida's press corps, but running for President means being surrounded by the press nearly every waking minute and knowing how to woo them is a key ingredient for presidential success.
5. He's Bald. America has a proud tradition of electing follicly gifted men to the White House. Even the few that sported chrome domes made up for it with wigs or Grade-A mutton chops. ('Sup, John Q. Adam and Martin Van Buren.) America's baldest president was Eisenhower, and that guy was a five-star general who championed infrastructure projects. Scott is and does not.
4. He's Not Here to Make Friends Scott's new to politics, and has few allies on the national stage and doesn't seem interested in making them. That's gonna hurt when it comes time to pick up endorsements.
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3. He's Got a Latino Problem. Yes, Scott managed to walked away with a slim majority of Hispanic voters in his governor's race, but with his tough stance on immigration we doubt he'd be able to do in on the national stage. It's hard to win the White House on the white vote alone these days.
2. He's Too Conservative and Not Sugar Coating It. The truth is, when you look at polls on an issue-by-issue basis, the American people are far more moderate than Scott. Some politicians can overcome that by having nice hair, being charismatic, or being the kind of guy you'd want to get a beer with. Some of them slap a nice label on it like Bush's "compassionate conservatism" or like how some liberals call themselves "progressives." But Americans shy away from politicians on the national stage who come across very clearly as strict ideologues.
1. We're Not Even Sure He Could Win Florida. His approval numbers aren't great, and we don't imagine them getting much better to be honest. Guys like Jeb Bush and Marco Rubio would trounce him a primary, and out-of-state power houses like Huckabee, Romney or even possibly Giuliani could take him. Should he win the nomination, we could even see Obama beating him in the general election. He won in 2008, and Florida has a notoriously moderate electorate.