Rubio endorses Romney on Fox News
Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., endorsed GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney Wednesday night, arguing that President Obama has deliberately divided the country.
Appearing on Hannity, a Fox News show, Rubio said, “No one can convince me that having a floor fight at the convention in Tampa in August is a recipe for victory in November,” adding that it is evident that “Mitt Romney is going to be the nominee.”
The senator added that Romney is a very clear alternative “to the direction this president is going to take the country.” Rubio also praised Romney’s experience with the private sector and the free enterprise system and his conservative credentials.
Hannity reminded Rubio the “tea party loves you and supports you” and that Rubio’s name is on “anybody’s short list” for vice president, but Rubio said he does not intend to be on Romney’s ticket.
The Tampa Bay Times reports that “Rubio’s endorsement comes late in the game — he said for months he did not plan to endorse — and closely follows that of his political mentor, former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush.”
The Times adds that “Rubio’s rising national status and conservative bona fides,” as well as his presence in the GOP “establishment circles and the tea party” make his endorsement important.
Add to that the fact that Rubio is a Florida native of Cuban descent, whom Republicans see as a figure who can bring the Hispanic vote their way in November.
Politico reported Monday that, “for a guy who keeps insisting he has no interest in being vice president, Sen. Marco Rubio appears to be feverishly positioning himself for the job.”
Politico added that a “Fox News poll this month showed almost one-quarter of Latino voters surveyed said they would be more willing to vote for a Republican if Rubio was on the ticket. His support increased to almost four in 10 in Florida, which is critical to GOP hopes of defeating Obama.”
According to a January 2012 Latino Decisions/Univision poll, about 60 percent of Latino voters across the U.S. had no opinion or had never heard of Rubio.
Progressive groups in Florida launched a website this month to shine “a spotlight on” Rubio’s “extremist positions, numerous ethical lapses, and the ‘wrong way’ he’s trying to lead our nation.”