Josh Marshall declares it to be Marco Rubio:
[N]ow Rubio seems trapped, on the wrong side of his party’s base on a key issue – and one that looks unlikely even to deliver legislation that might have bipartisanship traction with middle-ground voters. It’s one thing to say ‘I bucked my party to bring change the country needs’, another to say ‘I bucked my party on change my country needs but it actually didn’t pan out. Sorry.’ And now he’s forced to become some sort of hyperactive conservative wild man – what he wasn’t supposed to be – in order to recoup ground on the right that likely can’t be salvaged.
In a later post, Josh adds:
The immigration reform debacle is forcing Rubio to lurch right in a way that makes him look like a guy who has no political core, no principles – just an opportunist. And as his record gets further scrutinized, reporters and voters will find a pretty similar story waiting to be unpacked in the pre-2010 era. It all fits together into a clear and comprehensible narrative about a politician on the make. I did a little poking around today and I get the sense there’s no shortage of Florida Republicans ready to tell this story.
Francis Wilkinson thinks that Rubio “made the rookie mistake of trying”:
While Rubio was working to accomplish something difficult — to improve the status quo — most of his likely rivals for the 2016 Republican presidential nomination offered no constructive proposals. And if immigration reform dies, the do-nothings will be the ones feted (and not only by Politico) for their political savvy.
Which is so fucking depressing.
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