After completing my normal morning review of global news, I have come to the conclusion that there is a concerted push by well known conservative media outlets to hype the Presidential aspirations of Marco Rubio. He is their new favorite and is being promoted heavily. This push comes in the face of his reduced stature within the Tea Party for his support for immigration reform. It seems the Republican establishment is ready to nominate Rubio in spite of the anger on the far right regarding the immigration issue.
After being elected to the U.S. Senate from Florida in 2010 with the support of the Tea Party, against the flip-flopper Charlie Crist, Rubio came under heavy fire over the last eighteen months for his inclusion in the Gang of Eight bipartisan senators who pushed for immigration reform. I attended CPAC for the last two years, and the air was visibly let out of the balloon of Rubio’s fortunes among the conservative faithful. My reaction to his speech was one of interest but not excitement. I felt that he had some maturation to achieve prior to being presidential material.
The Republican establishment is highly focused on finding a candidate who can conform to and present their agenda as well as win against whatever candidate the Democrats will throw their way. They are focused on pushing immigration reform, as they believe the party will be overrun by demographics as the Hispanic population grows as a percentage of the electorate. This is a rational concern, seeing the results of the last few elections where Republicans have been shut out of the White House. However, the Republican leadership also has to address the concerns of the base–that in their zeal to make the Hispanic vote happy, they are weakening the rule of law, adding votes to the liberal cause, and, in the long run, destroying the very fabric of this country for short-term economic gain.
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The Right needs to find a candidate who can articulate both views and appeal to the base as well as the mainstream Republican agenda. We are at a historical crossroads for the United States of America. History is yet to be written as to whether we can move forward as a more diverse country and still maintain our historical values that have led to American exceptionalism and so much success.
I feel the effort to appease the Hispanic electorate by the Right via giving them what they want on immigration reform alone is misguided. Any future Republican presidential leader has to be able to articulate the Right’s views on self-reliance, limited government, and low taxes. I don’t believe the Tea Party is anti-immigration; they are just against breaking the law and needlessly adding voters to the roles that will just vote for more government handouts. That is why presidential leadership on the issue is so important. America is desperate for a leader who can take us into a prosperous and law-abiding future. Republicans are desperate for a candidate who can appeal to the Hispanic vote, but who also can articulate our values and why they are important. The Left has just been buying votes for too long with freebies from Uncle Sam. It remains to be seen whether Marco Rubio is that man or not.
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