Political pundit Karl Rove experienced another electoral malfunction last night on the Fox News Channel during its coverage of Super Tuesday election results.
Known as the architect of George W. Bush’s two national victories, Rove famously refused to accept that GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney was losing Ohio on Election Night 2012 until he was corrected by Fox anchor Megyn Kelly.
A somewhat similar attention-getting scenario played out last night for the keeper of the whiteboard who is on the Fox payroll.
For about two hours during the Super Tuesday evening, Fox deemed the primary contest between businessman Donald Trump and Florida Senator Marco Rubio in Virginia “too close to call.”
When asked by anchor Chris Wallace for his opinion on what he thought would happen in Virginia, Rove chimed in with his pro-Rubio insight that apparently was based on wishful thinking, perhaps given the bad blood between Rove and Donald Trump.
“I think this race is going to continue to tighten.”
Just as Rove was getting warmed up to discuss Senator Rubio’s momentum, Wallace interrupted the pundit, a long-time Bush family loyalist, to announce that Fox was making a call on Virginia, tossing it to Megyn Kelly who informed the viewers that the network was projecting Donald Trump as the winner.
Parenthetically, Rove is hardly alone. Trump has confounded virtually all of the political experts since the brash real estate developer officially announced his candidacy in June 2015.
As the Inquisitr previously reported, Rove has been cautioning the GOP establishment that Trump can’t win. He appeared on The O’Reilly Factor tonight to level more criticism at Trump’s alleged unelectability. See clip below.
In addition to Virginia, Trump won Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Massachusetts, Tennessee, and Vermont on Super Tuesday. Texas Senator Ted Cruz won three states (including his own), while Florida Senator Marco Rubio won the Minnesota Caucus.
Last month, in the aftermath of Trump’s victories in New Hampshire and South Carolina, Karl Rove claimed that the New York business mogul had peaked.
After the Nevada Caucus was decided, Rove penned a Wall Street Journal Op-Ed that included lots of delegate math that claimed that “There is still time for the non-Trump GOP majority to coalesce around a single candidate, but not much.”
Following his win in Nevada, Trump has used his Twitter feed to call Rove “sick” and “dopey” for his political prognostications on Fox and insisted he should be fired.
According to the Washington Times, however, like him or hate him, Trump’s presence in the presidential sweepstakes is presumably bringing new voters to the polls this primary season in unprecedented numbers. “Republicans continued to shatter turnout records in their presidential primaries and caucuses Tuesday, while Democrats lagged behind in what analysts said was a clear indication of an enthusiasm gap heading into the general election.”
Added the Associated Press, “Exit polls conducted for the Associated Press and other media across nine of the states showed Trump drawing significant support across educational, ideological, age and income classifications: Even among voting groups where he was weakest, he maintained enough strength to deny Sens. Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio any chance of catching him.”
Karl Rove fundraised and spent a lot of money in the last two election cycles with little to show for it through his American Crossroads organization.
“Rove has been the infrequent target of Trump’s insults during this cycle, so it’s possible that he was a teensy bit over-invested in a Rubio win in the Old Dominion. Whatever the reason, however, Rove boned it again,” the Huffington Post observed.
Commenting on Rove’s participation last night — particularly about his off-target Virginia “tightening” analysis — during the Super Tuesday coverage, Baltimore Sun media critic David Zurawik offered this assessment.
“Once upon a time, I was very impressed by Karl Rove. But, this year, he and his little whiteboard are leaving me cold. Either he’s not sharing the good inside stuff he knows with Fox viewers, or the game has passed him by. Either way, he needs to raise his on-air performance or step aside for someone who will share something real with viewers…Worse, he seems to have let his prejudices influence his analysis…”
Like-minded members with Rove in the GOP establishment in the form of a new Political Action Committee, Our Principles PAC, is launching an anti-Trump advertising blitz funded by wealthy donors in the run-up to the key Florida primary on March 15. There is also chatter that they will try to maneuver delegates at the Republican convention to nominate someone other than Trump.
Mitt Romney is scheduled to deliver a speech tomorrow with an anti-Trump message
“Rove has a spotty record with his predictions; In 2006, he predicted ‘a Republican Senate and Republican House,’ but the Democrats won the House and Senate; in November 2000, he opined that the presidential election ‘will not be close,’ and he said in 2000 that George W. Bush would win the New Hampshire primary, which Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) 36% won by 18 percentage points. In 2012 he predicted that Mitt Romney would get 279 electoral votes; Romney only got 206,” Breitbart News recalled.
Republican strategist Alex Castellanos asserted in an e-mail that the anti-Trump campaign within the Republican Party is a waste of time, the Washington Post reported.
“It is too late. There is a fantasy effort to stop Trump, like a fantasy campaign to stop yesterday but it exists only as the denial stage of grief. If our self-indulgent Republican party establishment had really wanted to prevent a takeover of the GOP, they should not have gorged on political power while they failed to do anything to prevent the decline of the country…They should have stood up for the change Donald Trump is bringing now but they didn’t.”
[Photo by Rich Pedroncelli/AP]