Yesterday the oath had been sworn, the speech delivered, the parade marched, the balls waltzed, and time found to briefly visit the Oval Office and ceremoniously rescind select Executive Orders of the previous occupant. Today being the first official day in office and the start of the 100 Day clock, it was time to get down to business.
President Marco Rubio and Vice-President Rick Santorum met in the morning to discuss an extensive legislative agenda. With a goal of repealing and replacing the so-called Affordable Care Act and completely revising – essentially rewriting – the tax code by Easter, they needed to hit the ground running.
Already Presidential historians likened the pair to Kennedy and Johnson. Rubio’s youth and vision ushered in a new generation of leadership, they declared. Meanwhile, Santorum’s knowledge of the House and Senate would prove crucial in shepherding landmark legislation through Congress.
Rubio, of course, was no John F. Kennedy. He had neither money ties nor wandering eyes. And Santorum was no Lyndon B. Johnson. Johnson’s infamous bullying and screaming tactics of the mid-twentieth century would likely have proven counter-productive in the new millennium.
In addition to a legislative agenda, several key appointments needed to be successfully navigated through the Senate. Fortunately, the Rubio-Santorum ticket had long coattails. To quote the famous headline: Die-hard Dems Disillusioned and Demoralized, Stay Home in Droves, Go Down to Defeat.
With a candidate racked by scandal, nominated by a determined elite seemingly hell-bent on thwarting the will of their own rank and file, and an outgoing administration leaving a legacy of a lop-sided economy, continued terrorist attacks and a world seemingly spiralling towards global conflagration, no one was truly surprised.
In the afternoon, the pair held a meeting and a photo-op with Supreme Court nominee Ted Cruz. It had not been a difficult decision for Cruz – Solicitor General, Attorney General, or Supreme Court Justice replacing Antonin Scalia. A lifetime appointment to the court could hardly be refused. Meanwhile, Texas could be reliably counted on to appoint an appropriately conservative replacement, maintaining the Republican majority.
The rest of the day focused on foreign affairs and national security issues. Re-establishing America as a leader required immediate and decisive action. The process started with yesterday’s inaugural address. Some likened it to Kennedy, others to Reagan, all agreed it was well written, well delivered and would be long remembered. Well, everyone who actually listened agreed. The old-guard liberal press focused on the weather and Rubio’s hair.
But that was yesterday. Today and the next 99 days would focus on turning the ship of state in a new direction. No large ship can change course quickly and easily. An ocean freighter is no sports car, and a nation is no small concern. It takes many people from all walks of life coming together with a common vision and a common goal to push, pull, drag, cajole, wheedle, and coax this great body towards a brighter future. Join together. Join hands. Join the cause.