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February 9, 2016

The Rise of the Unfit: Trump, Cruz and Rubio

Breathlessly, Republicans await the outcome of today's New Hampshire primary. In times past, New Hampshire was, variously, a check on Iowa, a force for moderation, a safe haven for front runners, a boon to long shots, and quicksand for the presumably anointed. In this unconventional year, it will likely alter the trajectory of the presumptive leaders -- not least because of Marco Rubio's Saturday night train wreck -- as well as of those in the second tier, muddling the contest for "mainstream" candidate while winnowing the brace of also-rans. But that death knell we are hearing is not just the mercy killing of walking footnotes like Carly Fiorina. It is for the GOP establishment and, more profoundly, for the very idea of what a president should be.

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