Slouching Towards Tampa (From Noxious to Obnoxious edition)

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Donald Trump was interviewed by a Michigan radio station last week, and the Bilious One, now a Romney backer, heaped scorn on Rick Santorum:

“There’s nothing – there’s no gift, no Christmas gift, that could be given better than Rick Santorum to the Democrats… he basically has no chance… what’s the whole purpose, what’s the purpose of working, working, working, going out voting, doing your thing if the person has no chance of getting elected…”

Trump was asked if he would consider an independent run if Santorum were to clinch the Republican nomination:

“I would say there’s a good possibility that I would do something, yes.”

Which would be grimly funny to watch, but it will never happen. Trump has done this bit so many times now that he’s sucked all the life out of it. Where’s the in-your-face braggadocio and devil-may-care lack of couth he brought to it when he first took it out on the road last year?

Real estate mogul Donald Trump touted his net worth as a selling point over likely presidential contender and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney.

“I’m a much bigger business man and have (a) much, much bigger net worth. I mean, my net worth is many, many, many times Mitt Romney,” Trump said Sunday on CNN’s “State of the Union.” “I built a very big net worth and I’d like to put that ability … to work for this country.”

And now he’s content to be a Romney shill. Maybe he’s hoping to write off his endorsement-related expenses as a charitable donation to the less fortunate.

Speaking of shills, former candidate Rick Perry is now backing Newt Gingrich, but dreams die hard:

Rick Perry may “absolutely” run for president again and described the debates in the 2012 primary as good practice…

… Perry… said the debates “have absolutely nothing to do with governing.” When asked if they were good practice for 2016, Perry responded “Ya, could be.”

Indeed it could, since in 2016 Republicans won’t be attempting to unseat Barack Obama, but simply to succeed him. Someday maybe Republicans will be able to look back on this election cycle and laugh; until then, it’s the rest of us who get to do the laughing. One Republican who could really use some nyuks is Ed Rollins. Rollins cut his teeth on national politics with CREEP in ’72 and later worked in the Ford and Reagan administrations. He managed Reagan’s 1984 campaign and Jack Kemp’s in 1988, briefly co-managed Ross Perot’s 1992 campaign, and was national campaign chair for Mike Huckabee in 2008.

This time around, he served as architect of Michele Bachmann’s ill-fated nomination bid, but stepped down on Labor Day:

Mrs. Bachmann’s campaign cited health reasons for the abrupt change in the role Mr. Rollins, 68, will play in the presidential campaign.

If Rollins’ health really played any part in the decision, I suspect it had something to do with his gorge rising every time Bachmann opened her mouth near a microphone. Based on some of his quotes in a marvelous new John Heilemann article in New York magazine, Rollins doesn’t seem any happier these days:

“Six months before this thing got going, every Republican I know was saying, ‘We’re gonna win, we’re gonna beat Obama,’” says former Reagan strategist Ed Rollins. “Now even those who’ve endorsed Romney say, ‘My God, what a fucking mess…'”

So enjoy the show, my liberal friends. As primary voters head to the polls today in Michigan and Arizona, even die-hard Republican have twigged to what we’ve known all along. Whether they’re choosing from among 10 candidates or four, the GOP’s options run an impressive gamut, all the way from noxious to obnoxious.