Marc(o) my words

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Photo by: Gage Skidmore

Keith Stone staff writer

Donald Trump might hate illegal immigrants, but the son of two Cuban immigrants is going to beat him in the Republican primaries. Marco Rubio may currently be in fourth place in most polls, with nine percent of the vote, but on election day, he’ll walk away as the next presidential nominee for three reasons.

First, Rubio is the only candidate in the top four who has any foreign policy or political experience whatsoever. Although Trump, Carly Fiorina and Ben Carson have collectively racked up 53 percent support in most polls, their stars will fade once voters end their love affair with Washington outsiders. At the end of the day, Republican voters will have to ask themselves a simple question, “Whose finger should be on that red button?” The answer will not be a vain, racist billionaire (Trump), an extremely unsuccessful CEO (Fiorina) or a neurosurgeon who talks slower and less knowledgeably than a six-year-old learning English (Carson). They will choose a man who has served multiple terms in state legislature, served Florida’s legislature as majority leader and speaker of the House and won a hard fought fight for the Florida Senatorial seat.

Second, Rubio has a serious campaign team with years of experience, and has many right-wing political views that will align with most of the Republican party. This campaign team understands that a major part of any political campaign is money, and they have already started pounding the pavement for political donors. In this case, they will be successful. Rubio’s conservative economic views and international foreign policy ideas all jive well with the Republican image of a perfect candidate. This perfect candidate is embodied by Rubio, a man willing to ramp up defense spending and play hardball with China and the Middle East. With the support of the party leadership, Rubio will have abounding opportunities to meet with the people he needs in order to win the nomination.

Also, Scott Walker recently dropped out of the race after watching his stance in the polls fall from second place to having less than .5 percent support. Back when Walker looked like a serious candidate, donors and political strategists flocked to his campaign, seeing him as one of the only people capable of challenging Jeb Bush. Now that Walker has withdrawn from the election, most of these experienced political operators and donors with massive cash hoards will look to the next best option, an experienced statesman named Marco Rubio, who has shown his right-of-center leanings and could very possibly become the next President of the United States, with a little help.

Lastly and most importantly, Rubio is a smart, well-spoken man who, polling shows, relates very well to women and minorities, especially Hispanic immigrants. In a party where every single presidential candidate out of 15 is a white male, except for Carly Fiorina and Ben Carson, the Republicans need someone who can obtain votes from the key Democratic groups, which is where Rubio’s Cuban heritage comes in. Also, various top Democrat strategists are uneasy about the possibility of a Hillary Clinton-Marco Rubio matchup because they know that his youthful face, fiery speeches and real life American-dream story could capture many previously Democratic voters.

Now, as election day comes closer, many of Rubio’s opponents will begin to feel threatened and start releasing negative campaign ads. Although Rubio has a strong background in many ways, he can also be hit pretty hard. For example, years ago, he lied and said that his parents left Cuba during the Castro regime, but they actually left before. He has also flip-flopped on many important issues such as the “Path to Citizenship” which he initially supported and then railed against. His record in the Senate is not very strong as he was frequently absent. However, all of these issues will be overcome simply by the fact that Rubio is the best of the worst. He can adroitly respond to all accusations with skill and aplomb, which he did during the second Republican debate when questioned about his Senate record. Even with weak areas where he can be attacked, he’ll be able to fight off allegations, smears and other aggressive actions and rise to the top of the heap.

No matter what, in 2016, Marco Rubio, with the support of the GOP will be facing off against the Democratic nominee in an incredibly heated race for the highest office in the land.

 

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