Congressman Mike Rogers stopped by the office last week to offer his thoughts on affairs in Washington D.C., including the race for the presidency. Rogers, who has represented us in Washington for 14 years, knows a the players involved at the highest levels and it was interesting to hear his take on politics in 2016.
“God help us” were his words if Donald Trump becomes the Republican nominee for President. Like most Washington insiders, Rogers would like to see an establishment candidate win the nomination versus an outsider.
One of those first term senators (the other being Marco Rubio) that although is a part of the Washington landscape but would never be considered a Republican insider, Texas Senator Ted Cruz, is not a favorite of Rogers. Even though he won the Iowa primary, Rogers doesn’t see him getting the nomination.
According to Rep. Rogers, no one likes him. He came to Washington with one goal in mind, and that was to become the President of the United States, and he doesn’t care who he runs over in the process, noted Rogers.
From what I have read, Rogers is spot on. A championship debater at Harvard, his aggressiveness made him a target of ridicule. He had more enemies than friends. The same can be said in Texas, although too his credit the man knows how to build a formidable political machine and his debating acumen helps him gain a lot of support.
Rep. Rogers sees Cruz (and Rubio somewhat) as another Barack Obama. He’s essentially a first term senator who hasn’t been a manager of anything, totally inexperienced, yet with his speech-making capabilities a person that can turn on a lot of voters. Obama, said Rogers, became the media darling after he electrified the Democratic Convention in 2004 with a speech for the ages. After that, said Rogers, he was crowned the heir apparent by the national media and Democratic fundraisers.
Rep. Rogers unequiovocally supports Jeb Bush. He sees him as the one established, experienced Republican candidate that can beat Hillary Clinton. I too was leaning towards Bush, and after hearing Rogers comments, agree, even though he is polling in single digits, his experience as governor of Florida is tantamount to that of Cruz or Rubio.
As a side note, I lived in Florida, when Bush was governor, and most people would agree, he performed very well in a populous, sometimes divisive state. Bush simply had the ability to build consensus and get reforms passed, that other states struggled mightily with.
I’m a firm believer that we need someone with experience to run the largest organization in the world- the Presidency of the United States. Senators like Cruz and Rubio virtually have no experience. Rep. Rogers would say the same about Bernie Sanders, who he says is way out of line when it comes to mainstream America.
Of course Barack Obama had no experience, either. According to Rogers, Obama didn’t even have a fulltime job, and that lack of experience equates into a disaster presidency. I’m not sure I would call it “disasterous”, but I wouldn’t give it high praise either.
Rep. Rogers (57) is an Anniston attorney and businessman. He and his wife, Beth, have 3 children. He is chairman of the Strategic Forces Committee, a sub-committee of the powerful House Armed Services Committee.
Rep. Rogers is running for re-election this year. Opposing him in the Republican primary is former Phenix City Schools superintendent Larry DiChiara.