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Marco Rubio Has A New Answer For His Inexperience Problem

Headlines Politics Tribune News Service

Marco Rubio Has A New Answer For His Inexperience Problem

Marco Rubio

By Sahil Kapur, Bloomberg News (TNS)

WASHINGTON – Has Marco Rubio hit on a way to turn two political minuses into a plus?

The 44-year-old first-term senator is competing for the Republican presidential nomination against a crowded field that includes eight governors or former governors and several more experienced lawmakers. He has also been dogged by questions about his acumen when it comes to his personal finances. In recent days he has come up with an argument that seemingly attempts to handle both potential problems.

At a forum last weekend in Ames, Iowa, Republican pollster Frank Luntz told Rubio that “the single biggest knock on you” is that “you haven’t been around long enough.” In response, the son of Cuban immigrants from humble beginnings cleverly morphed job “experience” into life “experience,” arguing that his makes him the most qualified to understand issues facing ordinary Americans.

“I don’t think anybody running for president understands what life is like for people today more than I do,” Rubio said, adding that his parents lived “paycheck to paycheck” and that he had student loans until four years ago. His youth and his financial struggles have given him more of the kind of experience a president needs, he argued.

“No one running has more experience on the issues we face right now, today, in the 21st century, with a world that’s more dangerous than ever and an economy that’s changing faster than we’ve ever seen since the industrial revolution.”

The crowd applauded.

Thursday, in another interview, Rubio trotted out a different version of the same line.

“The world is changing, and no one who is running for president has more experience than I do on the issues confronting our country right now,” the freshman Florida senator told Fox News in an interview Thursday.

Fox host Bret Baier didn’t seem convinced. Why, he asked, is a governor not better positioned for the White House than he is?

Rubio responded that the presidency is a “unique office” that’s “not like being a senator, but it’s not like being a governor, either,” saying that presidents face national security challenges but that they “don’t create jobs.”

Republican voters tend to prefer governors to senators for the White House — and Rubio has been among them in the past as he endorsed former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee in 2008 and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney in 2012. Recently in Iowa, a voter pointed out similarities between Rubio and then-Sen. Barack Obama in 2008.

Photo: Gage Skidmore via Flickr



  1. docb July 26, 2015

    This attempt shows how inexperienced he really is.. Missing the mark by a mile..

  2. Dominick Vila July 26, 2015

    Sen. Rubio is an intelligent, hard working, man, but he is going to need a lot more than teary eyed immigrant experiences to have a chance at the GOP nomination. In addition to the obvious ethnic and cultural bias that is evident in a large segment of the Republican party, the rest are looking for specifics on issues that range from abortion, to gay marriage, to tax incentives for corporations, to the replacement of social programs with for profit institutions. Sen. Rubio does not have a chance to win the GOP nomination, and neither do most of those running. The race for the nomination is limited to Trump, Bush, Walker, and Huckabee. Even Rand Paul is unlikely to elicit more than 2% or 3% of the GOP vote. Dr. Carson’s current popularity is bound to evaporate the moment the GOP concludes that their message of inclusiveness has been conveyed.

  3. charleo1 July 26, 2015

    It’s no secret many Republicans understand the problems faced by the vast majority of Americans today. And are able if it suits their fancy, to tick them off very nicely. From the increasingly high cost of a secondary education, to the Middle Class struggle to maintain access to affordable healthcare. Then on to stagnant wages, and the increasing lack of opportunities for people to move up, and out of lower circumstances. This they’ll even go so far as to admit, is especially true for minorities, and people of color. Who have taken the largest hit, and continue to suffer over the repercussions of the Great Recession. However, it’s only after elected, that their priorities, and concerns change 180 degrees. From concerns about making sure the little guy, and small businesses get a fair shake. To shilling for the big banks, and doling out tax breaks to offshore jobs, and hide profits. As they attach an amendment to cut food assistance on every bill coming out of Congress. Only to suggesting in the strongest of terms possible, if Americans would somehow learn to do without all the ‘cushy benefits’ like pensions, healthcare, Social Security, or Medicare. Working hours could be increased exponentially! That all these issues the Democrats like to talk about all the time, would magically disappear, if left to the free market, and unfettered Capitalism. And besides, they’ll add, it’s not their job as elected officials, to do for you, that which you really should do for yourselves.

  4. susan.thomas32 July 27, 2015



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