Thursday, December 13, 2012

The GOP's big three

John Dickerson has a good read on the three GOP figures who are increasingly trying to define the party's future -- Marco Rubio, Paul Ryan, and Bobby Jindal.

Jindal, he claims, is positioning himself as the "truth-teller" and as a "doer", Ryan is going for "bleeding heart conservative", and in what's probably the best nickname to date, he calls Rubio the "Coalition Whisperer."

Marco Rubio is something more rare—the coalition whisperer. Party strategists are hoping he will be the man who helps Republicans improve their relationship with Hispanic voters. Unlike Ryan, who must operate in the balky political system, Rubio has public gifts of the kind on display at that same Kemp dinner. He told the crowd that night of being presented with a badge from the hotel’s catering department that read, “Rubio, Banquet Bartender,” in honor of his father. “It all starts with our people,” Rubio continued. “In the kitchens of our hotels. In the landscaping crews that work in our neighborhoods. In the late-night janitorial shifts that clean our offices. There you will find the dreams America was built on. There you will find the promise of tomorrow.”

No other national Republican figure can speak like that.

Btw, Ramesh Ponnuru also wrote about these guys the other day, "Can Jindal, Rubio, and Ryan save the Republican party?"

Even the language the three men are using these days is similar. “We need to show folks that we are an aspirational party,” Jindal said. “We need to be the party that represents the upward mobility,” a party that believes “every single American has the same American dream, and we want to help them.”

It's a pretty good set of guys to put forward as the faces of your party, but more importantly, none of them are being coaxed to do it -- they're just doing it. That signals talent and that also signals ambition, and probably most of that ambition is directed toward the 2016 GOP nomination.