Marco Rubio’s views on reproductive rights are likely to alienate women. His views on immigration reform are likely to alienate a lot of Latinos. His take on marriage equality is going to alienate the LGBT community. And his plan for tax breaks for millionaires will alienate economists.
But now Rubio has really done it: he’s alienated the comic-con crowd.
The latest McClatchy/Marist poll found the Florida senator running third nationally, trailing only Donald Trump and Ben Carson, in the race for the Republican nomination, but there was an interesting age gap: Rubio may be the youngest candidate – he’s only 44 – but he enjoys stronger support with older GOP voters than younger GOP voters.
Rubio has pitched himself as the voice of a new generation of far-right policymakers, but voters older than him tend to like Rubio more than voters younger than him.
The senator’s take on science fiction may not help matters.
The first hint of trouble came two weeks ago, when someone asked Rubio a familiar genre question: Star Wars or Star Trek? He tweeted in response, “Star wars. It has a political theme.” The political themes in Star Trek are hard to miss, making his answer odd.
Today in New Hampshire, Rubio added some related thoughts on the subject, explaining his conflicted feelings about Darth Vader. He also reflected on some childhood toys (thanks to my colleague Will Femia for the heads-up):
…Rubio also revealed that he had a toy version of the Death Star, the fictional base for the movie’s darker forces, and re-told a key moment in the series’ plot.“I think I had the Death Star, but it kept breaking just like it did in part two – in ‘Empire Strikes Back’ when it blew up cause that guy got that rocket to go into that hole,” Rubio said. “Remember that?”
No. No, no, no. Noooooo.
Look, I realize Marco Rubio gets confused about economic policy, foreign policy, health care, immigration, the culture wars, and most of the major issues of the day, but he should at least have some basic understanding of Star Wars canon.
First, the Death Star blows up in two Star Wars movies, but “The Empire Strikes Back” isn’t one of them.
Second, Luke Skywalker is not to be referred to as “that guy.”
And third, I wouldn’t really say Luke fired a “rocket.”
Political pundits seem to love the Florida senator, but is it fair to say Rubio just lost some backing among sci-fi pundits?
Postscript: If Rubio is looking for pointers on how public officials and politicians should talk about Star Wars, he could get some useful pointers from the Obama White House, which knows what it’s talking about.