Donald Voldemort and Rubio Potter? Muggle PAC bungles beloved books

Candidates for the GOP presidential nomination, Senator Marco Rubio and Donald Trump. © Rick Wilking
In a dubious reading of J.K. Rowling’s books, Marco Rubio’s super-PAC sent out a fundraising pitch comparing the Florida Senator to Harry Potter, while casting the GOP frontrunner Donald Trump as the Dark Lord Voldemort.

Rubio came in second in the South Carolina primaries on Saturday, beating Ted Cruz by two-tenths of a percent and trailing Trump by ten percentage points. Calling this a “tremendously good” showing, Warren Tompkins and Jon Lerner of the political action committee Conservative Solutions argued that Trump would get weaker, not stronger, as the Republican field shrinks.

This is where the wizard analogy comes in – and Tompkins and Lerner insist it is an analogy, not a comparison.

“Like Voldemort’s horcruxes, the large candidate field shields Trump from harm,” their memo states. “At each step of the primary process, Trump is losing his shields, and that is making him more vulnerable.”

While intriguing, the analogy borrowed by Tompkins and Lerner does not quite work.  In Rowling’s best-selling series, the evil wizard Voldemort achieved immortality by imbuing seven objects – the horcruxes – with the fragments of his soul. One would be hard-pressed to believe that Jeb Bush or Chris Christie – both out of the race by now – somehow contained a piece of Trump.

Harry Potter fans know that the very last “horcrux” required the boy wizard to sacrifice himself in order to defeat Voldemort. Tompkins and Lerner either haven’t read the books themselves, or someone has put them under a Confundus Charm, since their analogy would imply Rubio himself was Trump’s “shield.”

There is also the small matter of coming to the party three months late.  Trump was first compared to Voldemort in December of last year after he proposed a temporarily banning Muslims from entering the US. The comparisons at that time prompted Rowling to tweet, “Voldemort was nowhere near as bad.”

Setting aside their “muggled” understanding of the Potterverse, there does not seem to be much evidence to back Tompkins and Lerner’s assertion that Trump has “virtually no claim on the other two-thirds” of the Republican vote. State and national polls all show Trump with a double-digit lead over every other candidate, with Rubio and Cruz racing to be the also-ran.

The sole exception is an NBC/Wall Street Journal poll from last week that Tompkins and Lerner seem to refer to in their memo – though it shows Cruz 2 percent ahead of Trump and 11 percent ahead of Rubio, rather than Rubio beating Trump 57-41, as the memo purports.

“The data consistently and overwhelmingly shows Trump with the highest unfavorables among the remaining candidates, and that he is the last choice of more voters than any other Republican by far,” the superPAC memo states.

Republicans caucus in Nevada on Tuesday before heading to the March 1 “Super Tuesday” primaries in Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Massachusetts, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Texas, Vermont, and Virginia. Republican caucuses will also be held in Alaska, Colorado, North Dakota and Wyoming on the same day.