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The Most Important Number in Politics Today

1,000,000

That's -- roughly -- the amount of money that former Florida state House Speaker Marco Rubio (R) raised over the past three months for his Senate candidacy, a sum that is likely to keep him within financial shouting distance of Gov. Charlie Crist (R) for the foreseeable future.

"This is a strong statement about the direction you believe our Republican Party, our state and our nation should take," said Rubio in a release touting the numbers.

Rubio's haul is a vast improvement on the lackluster $350,000 he collected between April 1 and June 30, a total that was dwarfed by Crist's massive $4.4 million.

Even with his significantly improved fundraising over the last three months, Rubio is almost certain to be outraised by Crist in this and every quarter between now and the primary.

But, what Rubio did with his fundraising showing over the past three months is ensure that the race he had hoped for will happen. That race? A choice between himself, a conservative, and Crist, a moderate, with national implications for the future of the Republican party.

Already Rubio has drawn significant attention from national conservatives -- a glowing profile from National Review, an endorsement from former Gov. Mike Huckabee (Ark.) and a campaign donation from former White House deputy chief of staff Karl Rove -- and his fundraising has the potential to further transform him into a cause celebre among Republicans.

While Crist carries massive leads in both fundraising and primary polling, there is significant concern within the governor's camp about the Rubio's potential. Conservatives in the state are not thrilled with Crist after his high profile support of President Barack Obama's stimulus package and his decision to appoint a Democrat to the Florida state Supreme Court.

Expect Rubio to get even more attention -- and money -- over the next three months as conservatives nationally hone in on the race as a referendum on the future direction of the party.

By Chris Cillizza  |  October 6, 2009; 2:30 PM ET
Categories:  Most Important Number  
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Comments

Funny that "drindl" tried to post about Rubio on thread's today having nothing to do with that race. To keep this $1 million raised in THREE MONTHS in perspective, Rep. Joe Wilson (R-SC) raised $2.7 million just in the few weeks since he called out pResident Obama as a liar.

http://www.politico.com/blogs/bensmith/1009/Joe_Wilsons_tally_since_You_Lie_rises_to_27_million.html

Posted by: JakeD | October 8, 2009 6:09 PM | Report abuse

Fashion is dead.

Some owners will do their own financing, and pay their share in one lump.

Posted by: shrink2 | October 6, 2009 10:19 PM | Report abuse

broadwayjoe:

No.

Posted by: JakeD | October 6, 2009 7:40 PM | Report abuse

"Rubio raises money from people committed to bringing about Fascism in the USA but not numerous enough to do it."
____________
It's the South Florida version of the stormfront crowd. They will give millions on a moment's notice for, er, "the Cause."
Let's hope Fort Sumter is well guarded.

Posted by: broadwayjoe | October 6, 2009 7:34 PM | Report abuse

Jake, have you reconsidered asking the Post for health insurance, retirement benefits, and free parking for "Jake's Place" (formerly known as "the Fix")? BTW, did you ghost-write the Post's ode to birther Oily Taitz today?

Posted by: broadwayjoe | October 6, 2009 7:26 PM | Report abuse

Now that we've heard (yet again) about Rubio, an extremist GOP long shot to say the least, I assume we will soon read a profile here of Kendrick Meek, the Dem candidate that Crist or Rubio will meet in the general election? Lookin' forward to it.

Posted by: broadwayjoe | October 6, 2009 7:18 PM | Report abuse

Well, I thought it was funny.

Posted by: JakeD | October 6, 2009 6:45 PM | Report abuse

yawn.

Posted by: drindl | October 6, 2009 6:00 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: JakeD | October 6, 2009 5:58 PM | Report abuse

snowbama:

He's so frazzled, on another thread, he actually called Barack "present" instead of President ; )

Posted by: JakeD | October 6, 2009 5:57 PM | Report abuse

I see the nmbla meeting has ended. Flood the blog with sewage.

Posted by: snowbama | October 6, 2009 5:32 PM | Report abuse

Aaron Sorkin had this right at least, straight from the "West Wing":

Will: Good evening, Mr. President.

Bartlet: How's it going?

Will: Fine, sir.

Bartlet: Good.

Will: No, it's not.

Bartlet: Yeah. What's hard is that foreign policy has become a statement of what we won't do.

Will: Yes, sir.

Bartlet: "A new doctrine for a new century, based not just on our interests, but on our values across the world." Well, that's pretty spicy stuff.

Will: You wrote it, sir.

Bartlet: Yeah, I know. Why is a Khundunese life worth less to me than an American life?

Will: I don't know, sir, but it is.

Posted by: JakeD | October 6, 2009 5:32 PM | Report abuse

The Most Important Number In Politics Today: 40

American and Afghan troops swept through forested mountains in eastern Afghanistan on Tuesday, killing 40 militant fighters in a hunt for insurgents responsible for one of the deadliest attacks of the war on U.S. troops, the Defense Ministry said.

==

Why does this matter? They're trying to suppress a fanatic religious movement with force of arms. There are plenty more where they came from and they don't get discouraged. The graveyard of empires has a new hole awaiting the corpse of American adventurism.

Posted by: GoldAndTanzanite | October 6, 2009 5:30 PM | Report abuse

Wow, NOTHING to see here. Newsflash: movement conservatives are hot-tempered political junkies who can't do math. They'll sell their other shirt, their trailer, they'd sell their souls if they could find a buyer, and send all the money to whatever caveman hates the same people they do.

What these uh people are NOT is numerous enough to win elections.

Rubio raises money from people committed to bringing about Fascism in the USA but not numerous enough to do it.

And the GOP is still leaning ever further right, and refusing to take the lesson from two searing losses.

More to come.

Posted by: GoldAndTanzanite | October 6, 2009 5:28 PM | Report abuse

FairlingtonBlade:

40 (or even 4,000) militant fighters are not the equivalent of ONE American military serviceman or woman. What was your point again?

Posted by: JakeD | October 6, 2009 5:15 PM | Report abuse

Didn't I read somewhere that we weren't going to be announcing enemy body counts anymore? That made sense to me, if we were focusing on protecting civilians vs. killing insurgents.

The kill ratio has always been highly in our favor. But I guess it makes sense to announce this engagement, to demonstrate resolve.

Posted by: mikenmidland | October 6, 2009 5:04 PM | Report abuse

The Most Important Number In Politics Today: 40

American and Afghan troops swept through forested mountains in eastern Afghanistan on Tuesday, killing 40 militant fighters in a hunt for insurgents responsible for one of the deadliest attacks of the war on U.S. troops, the Defense Ministry said.

BB

Posted by: FairlingtonBlade | October 6, 2009 4:55 PM | Report abuse

For Charlie Crist, Pinellas has become his firewall against Rubio's straw ballot insurgency.

http://bit.ly/8AU3k

Posted by: saintpetersblog | October 6, 2009 4:19 PM | Report abuse

If Martinez had not resigned and instead run for re-election, he would have faced a primary challenge from Crist.

If the National GOP had such a grip on Florida politics so as to prevent a primary, it would have made more sense to ask Crist not to run. But the GOP only tolerates minorities when they are rabidly conservative, like Rubio. Or Thomas.

Posted by: mikenmidland | October 6, 2009 4:11 PM | Report abuse

While Martinez is Latino also, Rubio is clearly more conservative. I am really surprised that the national Republicans allowed this primary to happen. I would have thought they would have channelled Rubio into the Governor's race, which could easily won by a Democrat, once Crist declared for Senate.

Posted by: OHIOCITIZEN | October 6, 2009 4:02 PM | Report abuse

If Rubio wins, he would be *another* Republican latino in that seat, which was recently vacated by Sen. Martinez. His resignation was due to the fact that he was too moderate for his party.

As for the moon shot, scriv, settle down. There is no trigger--this is an impact explosion. The projectile is not filled with explosive. The mass and velocity are much less than that of other "natural" projectiles which have been hitting the moon for eons.

Posted by: mikenmidland | October 6, 2009 3:53 PM | Report abuse

MOST IMPORTANT NUMBER IN WORLD HISTORY TODAY: 3?

* What's NASA Got Against the Man in the Moon? Or Do They Just like to Blow Stuff Up?

* What About the Moonlight? Will It Go Dim?

* Should POTUS Intervene to Save "The Light By the Silvery Moon"?

THREE.

That's the number of days until NASA sends a projectile crashing into the moon, causing a massive explosion expected to send a six-mile-high plume of debris -- visible from Earth -- into the lunar atmosphere (or is it a vacuum-a-sphere?)

The stated reason for the "Mythbuster"-like exercise: To determine if there's a substantial amount of water on the Moon.

Question for NASA scientists who may happen by here:

Is this really the best way to divine for H2O? Don't we have less destructive ways to do this? Or is this just a cover story to cloak the real reason for this lunar fireworks display?

What's the explosive trigger? Is this actually some sort of a microwave or laser or plasma or particle beam directed energy weapons test -- a doomsday weapon?

It's been eons since the last massive lunar impact. Will this NASA adventure dim the moonlight? And for how long? Should they be messing with "Earth's Night-light" like this?

Who is to say that this explosion might not cause a fracture in the lunar surface that could trigger a massive "moonquake" -- possibly enough to affect the lunar axial rotation, nudging the moon out of its orbit and perhaps causing the sphere to lose orbital velocity, sending the orb on a collision course with the Earth? If not soon, sometime much sooner than would would have been predicted by astrophysics?

Okay, I know... this sounds ridiculous. I'm no astrophysicist. But how much does NASA really know about the plate tectonics of the moon? Who's to say this explosion might not trigger some unanticipated consequences?

Didn't someone wisely say, "Don't mess with Mother Nature?" I am being serious here! Inquiring minds want to know...

Got links, anyone? This one does not answer the question, but raises similar concerns:

http://current.com/items/90211992_nasa-scheduled-to-set-off-moon-explosion-this-week.htm

Posted by: scrivener50 | October 6, 2009 3:39 PM | Report abuse

Actually the Florida Republican Senate primary has national implications either way. If Rubio, a Cuban-American, wins, it would give the Republicans a prominent relatively young Latino office-holder at the national level. Of course the problem would be that he is to the right of most Latinos nationwide. But still there is the ethnic appeal there, which Republicans could site as ethnic expansion of their party---getting them away from being purely characterized as the "party of old white men."

However, a Crist victory, while depriving Republicans of being able to claim they were broadening themselves ethnically, would boost what is left of the moderate/centrist wing of the party, as Crist is clearly to the left of the vast majority of Senate Republicans.

Posted by: OHIOCITIZEN | October 6, 2009 3:33 PM | Report abuse

hone is a whetstone, or to sharpen, such as 'hone an attack.'

'home in' refers to zeroing in on a target.

Posted by: drindl | October 6, 2009 3:20 PM | Report abuse

If Rubio loses, it will be because he wasn't 'conservative' enough, you know.

Posted by: drindl | October 6, 2009 3:10 PM | Report abuse

Uh Chris, I know most conservatives are stupid, but I suspect they will home in, not hone in, on this race.

Posted by: koolkat_1960 | October 6, 2009 3:09 PM | Report abuse

Wow -- an endorsement from Karl Rove and National Review -- two of the most evil elements in America today. That's something all right. Well let's hope Rubio wins and then gets his butt kicked in the general, with Rove tied around his neck.

Of course, then it will be all politics is local again.

Posted by: drindl | October 6, 2009 3:06 PM | Report abuse

"A choice between himself, a conservative, and Crist, a moderate, with national implications for the future of the Republican party"

This statement is the most telling of this article. The GOP is looking hard for an identity, and IMO it is looking more and more like that identity will be the conservative right wing of the party. Which is fine with some people, but at the same time the democrats are trying to scoop up more and more moderate voters.

If Rubio wins then I would be willing to bet that the Democrats take the Florida seat.

Posted by: AndyR3 | October 6, 2009 3:05 PM | Report abuse

Two questions for The Fix here:

1. Any chance that if Crist loses to Rubio in the primary that Kendrick Meek could defeat Rubio in the General Election?

2. What are the chances that if Crist loses the Republican Primary, he will run in the General as an Independent? He might actually have a genuine shot at winning a 3-way race. Of course such a scenario may really enhance Meek's chances of winning also.

Posted by: OHIOCITIZEN | October 6, 2009 3:02 PM | Report abuse

"But, what Rubio did with his fundraising showing over the past three months is ensure that the race he had hoped for will happen. That race? A choice between himself, a conservative, and Crist, a moderate, with national implications for the future of the Republican party."

Or not. Anyone want to bet that if Crist wins it will suddenly become 'all politics is local' again? That's the way they play it.

Posted by: drindl | October 6, 2009 3:01 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: JakeD | October 6, 2009 2:51 PM | Report abuse

Did Rep. Wilson (R-SC) raise TWICE that much in the week following his shout-out to pResident Obama?

Posted by: JakeD | October 6, 2009 2:46 PM | Report abuse

That's nice for Sen. Rubio, but given that yesterday's "Most Important Number in Politics" was EIGHT (for the American servicemen killed in Afghanistan), shouldn't today's number be SIX?

The remains of 6 U.S. soldiers KIA returned home for the final time today:

http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/chi-ap-us-afghanistan-casua,0,7273573.story

The soldiers were identified by the military as Sgt. Joshua J. Kirk of South Portland, Maine; Spec. Michael P. Scusa of Villas, N.J.; Spec. Christopher T. Griffin of Kincheloe, Mich.; Pfc. Kevin C. Thomson of Reno, Nev.; Sgt. Vernon W. Martin, of Savannah, Ga.; and Spec. Stephen L. Mace of Lovettsville, Va.

Here's one of their life stories:

http://www.philly.com/philly/news/breaking/20091006_Cape_May_soldier_killed_in_Afghanistan_attacks_returns_to_U_S__so.html

Posted by: JakeD | October 6, 2009 2:39 PM | Report abuse

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