Opinion: Sen. Marco Rubio Won't Be the GOP Veep (Probably)

Tuesday, February 14, 2012 - 04:40 PM

So much of the commentary on the airwaves today revolves around the Republican flavor of the week candidate. Romney was up last week; Santorum is up this week and who knows what next week will bring us.

And yet, folks overlook what I think is the really fascinating race that is percolating just beneath the surface of our national consciousness: The race to become the Republican nominee for Vice President. The United States Senate is comprised of 100 men and women who all believe they ought to be president, yet most shrug of any notion of being picked as the running mate on the ticket.

Take Florida Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL), for example. At first glance, he would seem to have it all: Compelling life story, former Speaker of the Florida House of Representatives, beautiful family, etc. Yet, sources I’ve spoken to who are close with Rubio say that he isn’t interest in running as vice president and doesn’t want to be considered to do so. His rationale is that his roots are in Florida, his family is in Florida and he made a commitment to serve his full six-year term in office.

At the same time, how could Rubio not be selected for all of the reasons I’ve articulated, above? Presuming that Gov. Romney is the eventual nominee, wouldn’t he need someone who could inoculate him from charges of being a Johnny Come Lately to the cause of conservatism? Rubio’s ties to the conservative party and Tea Party movement are impeccable and unassailable. Also given that Hispanic voters will be key either to President Obama’s re-election or a Republican victory, wouldn’t having a rising star who also happens to be of Cuban descent a nice touch to a winning ticket?

As an admirer of Senator Rubio, I hope he’s our pick to stand a heartbeat away from the presidency. Once you take away Rubio, Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI), Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell and Senator John Thune (R-SD), our bench is a bit short at this point.

As for President Obama, don’t believe the “Draft Hillary” talk that zings through cyberspace about replacing Joe Biden as the VP candidate. I think the President felt confident that he made the right pick in 2008 - while selecting Hillary would energize the democratic base, he will need Biden in crucial states such as Pennsylvania, Ohio and West Virginia – states he must carry to be re-elected.

So next time you hear someone asking you to handicap the race for president in November, challenge them to put their cards on the table as to who the next vice president will be. A far more complex and interesting question to watch as the campaign season now unfolds in earnest.


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Comments [3]


"..Compelling life story, former Speaker of the Florida House of Representatives, beautiful family, etc..."

The "ect." is the most important part with all the other reasons mentioned superficial window dressing that the chattering classes of the establishment are so obsessed with.

Rubio articulates conservatives in a way that makes conservative another word for common sense and exposes the malarky of progressivism as the sham that is. He is not just a pretty face and compelling story but he is the thinking person's Obama. He appeals to the intellect and our better angels while Obama appeals to base emotion and our deepest divisions.

Feb. 15 2012 06:24 PM
Paul Smith from Houston, TX

Rubio can't be the VP candidate - he's not eligible. Rubio's parents were not U.S. citizens when he was born therefore he is not a natural born citizen.

For details, see:


Feb. 14 2012 08:26 PM

If you are an admirer of Rubio, we can extrapolate that your worst fear is Obama winning a second term, so this article is probably an attempt to manipulate the outcome. Hence, I'll take with a huge grain of salt any predictions about Obama's VP pick.

I'll be quite happy, though, if Romney picks Rubio as his VP candidate. I still remember the last election, when a pretty-faced Tea Party VP pick turned catastrophic for McCain, as people soberly reflected on what it would actually mean to have that finger poised over the nuclear button. Biden or Clinton are both serious, substantive, experienced statesmen/women. Either is Presidential. Either would mop the floor with Rubio.

Feb. 14 2012 06:27 PM

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