by Jay Caruso
COLUMBIA, SC – Campaigns that are confident and think they’re going to win are usually easygoing and willing to talk to the press, especially grassroots based political sites such as this one. Earlier today, I wrote about my experience going by the Rubio headquarters in Columbia and it was a great experience. People talked openly.
Shortly thereafter, I stopped by Jeb Bush’s headquarters which was just up the road from Rubio. What a difference.
I walked in and unlike the upbeat sense I got inside the Rubio HQ, Jeb’s place was pretty dead. There was approximately 12-15 people working the phones. There wasn’t much activity going on. When I told a pleasant woman at a desk I was there from RedState, she smiled and told me she’d get Taylor. All I was going to do was the same I did over at Rubio’s HQ. I wanted to ask some basic questions, get some photos and talk to a few people.
Imagine my surprise when Taylor came out and immediately told me, “I am not allowed to go on the record. If you want to ask questions you have to talk to Jim Dyke.” Really? I wasn’t there asking campaign secrets. Just to get a general sense of what they thought.
As Taylor went off to fetch Jim Dyke’s phone number for me, I didn’t do anything. It felt like I was told moments ago, “Don’t move from this spot.”
When he came back with the phone number, I thanked him and he immediately say, “Thanks for stopping by.” Essentially what he was saying, “That’s about all I am going to say to you. Get lost.”
It’s indicative of a campaign that was so out of touch, it couldn’t seem to find any footing. When you have people who can’t talk to somebody in the press over light campaign coverage, then you realize things are too centrally located. It is likely a situation where people are still trying to convince Jeb he can win. He’s going to limp out of South Carolina and into a crushing defeat in Nevada. When will it end?