Is Rubio a Real Contender?

Bloomberg/Getty
Bloomberg/Getty
He still makes the presidential wannabee lists, but Rubio might be lucky in 2016 just to hold his Senate seat.
Florida Senator Marco Rubio made news on Sunday’s “This Week” when asked by Jonathan Karl if he considered himself ready to be president:

“I do … but I think that’s true for multiple other people that would want to run … I mean, I’ll be 43 this month, but the other thing that perhaps people don’t realize, I’ve served now in public office for the better part of 14 years,” said Rubio.

Do the math. Rubio has held public office since age 29. His Wikipedia profile states “politician” as his profession. Given that most Americans believe that “politician” is not exactly a highly respected career path, Rubio may at least want to change his Wiki profile to read “public servant.”

In fact, he may be forced into a career change. Why? Because Senator Rubio is up for a difficult reelection in November 2016, and he told Jonathan Karl that if he runs for president he would not simultaneously run for the Senate.

This could be construed as a jab at Kentucky Senator Rand Paul who is actively considering both.  But Rubio does not have a choice because Florida law prevents ambitious politicians from having their names appear twice on the ballot for different offices, as does Kentucky. And Paul has more in-state political clout and is engaged in changing the law in Kentucky, while Rubio has accepted the Sunshine State status quo.

A quick glance at the Real Clear Politics poll averages for the 2016 GOP presidential nomination indicates that Rubio would be better off focusing all his energy on his Senate reelection if he wants to keep “politician” as his current profession. The current three leaders are Rand Paul and Mike Huckabee with 13 percent each, and Jeb Bush at 12.3 percent. Rubio is stuck in the middle at 6.5 percent.

He doesn’t even fare well at home. The latest Quinnipiac survey of 2016 GOP voters has Jeb Bush winning 27 percent, Rand Paul garnering 14 percent and Rubio trailing at 11 percent. Furthermore in a Florida 2016 general election match-up Clinton stomps Rubio by a margin of 52 to 40 percent.

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Source: The Daily Beast | Myra Adams

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