WILL SENATOR MARCO RUBIO BE THE NEXT VICE PRESIDENT: HE SAYS HE CAN’T DELIVER, “YOU’VE GOT TO EARN THE HISPANIC VOTE”

THE HISPANIC BLOG IS THE LATEST HISPANIC NEWS BY JESSICA MARIE GUTIERREZ

Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida, widely speculated to be a top pick for the Republican presidential running mate, once again firmly denied he would join the GOP ticket.

“I’m not going to be the vice president,” Rubio said Friday in an interview with CNN en Español‘s Ismael Cala. “I’m not.”

photo source AP

“I’ll tell you, the Hispanic vote has to be earned,” he said. “You can’t just put somebody on there and say, ‘This is gonna deliver it.’ You’ve got to earn it, and primarily I think you earn it through economic policies.”

Last month, Rubio rolled out a big endorsement for Mitt Romney, adding fuel to the fire in talks over whether Rubio, whose parents emigrated from Cuba, would possibly be tapped for the Republican veep spot. Rubio, however, has repeatedly shot down the notion. With Latino-Americans becoming a more influential voting bloc, politicians are increasingly growing more aggressive in their efforts to court their votes. But the junior senator argued Friday that choosing him as a running mate would not do the trick.

In Florida, Republican Marco Rubio won the senate seat convincingly, with a strong turnout from Latino voters. Photograph: Gary Rothstein/EPA

“I think a better approach is the one I’ve talked about, and that is providing these kids some sort of non-immigrant visa status so they can continue to study and then work in the U.S.,” Rubio said. “Then at some point in the future they would be able to get in line, same line as everybody else in the world.”

Elected in 2010, Rubio was dubbed early on a rising star in GOP. He’s known for bucking popular policies within the Latino community, such as the DREAM Act, a proposal that would grant a path to citizenship for minors in the country illegally, providing they served in the armed forces or attended college. Instead, he sides with positions more inline with the Republican platform on immigration.

Asked if he was setting aside a vice presidential spot in hopes of aiming for higher office in the future, Rubio said:

Republican Sen. Marco Rubio, of Florida, works in his Washington office. (EFE)

“Well I haven’t thought about that in that way. I don’t know what the future holds. I want to do a good job as a U.S. senator. “I think if I do that, I’ll have opportunities to do different things in future.”

READ MORE: KTBS

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THE EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW WITH SENATOR MARCO RUBIO

THE HISPANIC BLOG IS THE LATEST HISPANIC NEWS BY JESSICA MARIE GUTIERREZ

In a Fox News Latino Exclusive interview, Florida Sen. Marco Rubio says he agrees with the 90 percent of Latinos who support the Dream Act -which allows young people who grew up in the U.S. and are in school or the military to become citizens.

In the interview the son of Cuban immigrants told me the proposed law, written by Democrats, would have allowed for “chain migration” of 3 to 4 million of the young people’s relatives. He is reportedly considering proposing a version of the Dream Act that blocks deportation of those young people but does not give them citizenship.

The senator’s uneasy straddle on the Dream Act is similar to his attempt to ride the fence on immigration reform.  He supports tough new laws passed by Republicans in Arizona, Alabama and South Carolina to allow police to demand proof of citizenship – arguably exposing all Latinos to harassment based on racial and ethnic profiling. In that case, the senator said he stands with the Republicans who put the laws in place because local officials are reflecting their constituents’ frustration at the lack of federal action on immigration reform. But he wants the federal government to take the lead. The young senator’s difficult tap dance with the Dream Act and immigration reform is more than one politician’s problem.

Sen. Rubio, the son of Cuban American immigrants, is every Republican’s first choice to be the vice presidential nominee in 2012. His presence on the Republican ticket is potentially a game-changer with Hispanics now the fastest growing segment of American voters and with a large presence in swing states, such as Florida, Nevada and Colorado.

WATCH MARCO RUBIO’S FOX NEWS INTERVIEW

http://video.foxnews.com/v/video-embed.html?video_id=1539051691001&w=466&h=263
Rubio could also help Romney with conservatives because of his ties to the far-right Tea Party.  Rubio is also working with republicans in congress, including Senators in states with large immigrant populations, to write an immigration reform proposal that could win support of a majority of Republicans. The pressure for a Romney-Rubio ticket grew in recent days after former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush endorsed Mitt Romney, the likely Republican nominee, and also went public with his preference for Rubio to be on the GOP ticket. Rubio contributed to political buzz when he quickly followed Bush’s lead with his own endorsement of Romney. “Marco Rubio is living proof that the American dream is still very much alive,” Romney said in a release thanking Rubio for the endorsement.

In February, a national Fox News Latino poll found that 24 percent of likely Latino voters said they are more likely to vote Republican if Senator Rubio is on the ticket.

But Rubio, on the night he endorsed Romney, insisted to me he will not accept an invitation to run with Romney. I asked him if he might change his mind if Romney and other GOP power brokers tell him that his potential power to attract Latino voters to the Republican ticket will be the difference between winning and losing the White House.

“First of all, these hypothetical questions are dangerous,” he said. “And it isn’t going to be the choice between winning and losing. You know, you don’t win or lose a presidential race on a VP pick. You win or lose on competing visions for the future of our country. “And I think we Republicans have an opportunity to offer a very clear contrast to the direction that [President] Barack Obama has taken and wants to continue to take the U.S. ,” he concluded.

The Fox News Latino poll shows that President Obama now has a job approval rating of 73 percent among Latino voters. None of the candidates running for the Republican nomination, including Mitt Romney, gets more than 14 percent of the Latino vote when facing President Obama.

“If Mitt Romney puts a Hispanic candidate on the ticket, I don’t think Hispanic voters are going to look at that say ‘Oh, yeah!,’ and ignore his stand against the Dream Act,” said Joel Benenson, President Obama’s campaign pollster.  The pollster said Romney’s policies on immigration are hurting him with Hispanics.

In fact, Romney has taken the hardest stand against immigration reform of any of the Republicans, including his famous proposal to have illegal immigrants deport themselves. He also criticized former Sen. Rick Santorum for supporting the nomination of Sonia Sotomayor, the first Latino justice on the Supreme Court. Romney has also gone after Texas Gov. Rick Perry for signing into law an in-state tuition benefit for illegal immigrants seeking an education.

So, does Sen. Rubio think Romney and the GOP vision for America’s economic future has any chance of getting through to Latino voters?

“Absolutely, [it will get to] all the communities in America,” Rubio said. No other community understands “empowerment, upward mobility, better than the Latino community… [it] is the reason why they are here to begin with. And the best system in the world for upward mobility and economic empowerment is the American free enterprise system. I would argue the Democrat’s agenda is undermining [it].”
READ MORE: FOX NEWS LATINO

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HAS SENATOR MARCO RUBIO BUMPED UP HIS AUTOBIOGRAPHY TO BE RELEASED BEFORE GOP CONVENTION?

Rubio moves publication of memoir before GOP convention

EXCLUSIVE: Marco Rubio, the 41-year-old first-term senator from Florida of Cuban extraction with sterling conservative credentials and matinee star looks, has bumped up the publication of his autobiography from October to June. Politico‘s Mike Allen broke the news this morning. The Sentinel imprint of Penguin Group is moving up the publication of Sen. Marco Rubio’s memoir, “An American Son.” It was originally planned for October but will now go on sale June 19. The jacket is attached, including the flap copy. There will also be a Spanish language edition, “Un Hijo Americano.” Adrian Zackheim, president and publisher of Sentinel: “National interest in Senator Rubio keeps heating up and we want the book out in the world as quickly as possible. It’s important to the Senator and to us that people hear his remarkable story, and that of his family, directly from him.”

See the jacket full size

–Rubio is racing a more critical version, “The Rise of Marco Rubio,” by WashPost’s Manuel Roig-Franzia, edited by Simon & Schuster’s Priscilla Painton, scheduled for release July 3.

–From Rubio’s jacket: “Rubio spent countless hours with his grandfather … ‘Papa’ loved being Cuban, but he also loved America for being a beacon of liberty to oppressed people around the world. As Rubio puts it, ‘My grandfather didn’t know America was exceptional because he read about it in a book. He lived it and saw it with his own eyes. … Conservatism is not about leaving people behind. Conservatism is about allowing people to catch up. … [M]y dad would work banquets at hotels. At these events there are usually only two people standing—the speaker on the podium and the bartender behind the bar. My dad was the one behind the bar. But he worked all his life so that his kids could make the symbolic journey from the bar to the podium.’”

READ MORE: POLITICO

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HOW DOES REPUBLICAN SENATOR MARCO RUBIO FEEL ABOUT FELLOW REPUBLICANS BEING ANTI-IMMIGRANT AND WILL HE BE THE NEXT VICE-PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE?

THE HISPANIC BLOG BY JESSICA MARIE GUTIERREZ

Will Marco Rubio be the Next Vice Presidential Candidate?

He has said –over and over and over again– that he does not intend to be the GOP vice presidential nominee. But, evidently, the disclaimer matters little to the public. Senator Marco Rubio of Florida once again has emerged in a national poll as the favorite to occupy the slot that is a heartbeat away from the presidency.

Beating out household names such as New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie and former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, Rubio was the top choice in a new poll that asked roughly 800 registered Republican and Independent voters across the country: “No matter who is the Republican nominee for president, if you could pick the vice presidential nominee, who would it be?”

After Rubio, respondents picked GOP presidential candidate Rick Santorum, former senator from Pennsylvania, then Christie, then Palin.

“Any time you place ahead of Sarah Palin, call yourself a winner,” said Peter Woolley, director of the poll, which was conducted from Feb. 6-12 by Fairleigh Dickinson University’s PublicMind. “Her name recognition and presence are formidable.”

The results, released Monday, come shortly after a straw poll conducted at the Conservative Political Action Conference recently showed Rubio as an overwhelming favorite for the vice presidential slot. In the CPAC poll, Rubio was followed by Christie, and then Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell.

In the presidential straw poll, Mitt Romney was the top choice, followed by Santorum, former House Speaker Gingrich and Texas Congressman Ron Paul.

Rubio has not yet endorsed any of the GOP presidential candidates; his endorsement would be a big get for any of the contenders.

His thoughts on the words and actions of the contenders have carried weight. He’s a Tea Party favorite, a GOP star and, many say, the future of the Republican Party.

Rubio, 40, is one of Florida’s most popular leaders, particularly among Republicans. A Quinnipiac University poll released Jan. 10 found that nearly 80 percent of Republicans and nearly half of independents approved of the job he is doing. Only a quarter of Democrats liked his job performance.

“It’s pretty easy to see why Florida Sen. Marco Rubio is on every GOP presidential candidate’s vice presidential shot list,” said an article in U.S. News & World Report. “The freshman, Cuban-American senator laid out a passionate, succinct, and unifying conservative agenda more effectively than any of those actually vying for the presidency have thus far, during remarks he made at the Conservative Political Action Conference.”

At CPAC, Rubio asked: “What is the conservative movement? It’s pretty straightforward. We believe that the way prosperity is created is when people have the freedom and the opportunity to pursue their dreams.”

Rubio has not hesitated to call out fellow Republicans when he feels they have erred.

He has taken exception to what he considers potentially self-destructive talk by Republicans about illegal immigration. He has urged the party to focus its rhetoric on legal immigration.

He assailed Gingrich for airing an ad in the Cuban-American senator’s home state calling Romney, considered the frontrunner in the GOP primary, “anti-immigrant.”

“This kind of language is more than just unfortunate,” Rubio was quoted as saying in The Miami Herald. “It’s inaccurate, inflammatory, and doesn’t belong in this campaign.”

No sooner did the news of Rubio’s discomfiture hit the Web than the Gingrich campaign say that it planned to pull the radio ad out of “respect for the senator’s wishes.”

“We respect Senator Rubio tremendously and will remove the ad from the rotation,” said Gingrich’s Florida campaign leader, Jose Mallea, according to The Miami Herald.

Echoing the sentiment other presidential contenders in the GOP primary have expressed, Gingrich said during a debate before the Florida primary that Rubio was worthy of consideration for vice president.

Asked the next day to elaborate on his statement, Gingrich said in an interview with Fox News Latino: “I think that anybody who has any sense as a presidential candidate is going to recognize that Marco Rubio has to be on the short list.”

“He is so talented, he is so competent, his background is so strong, he’s such a good speaker. . .he has an ability to reach out and help with the very rapidly growing Latino community across the whole country. . .Anyone who wouldn’t put him there I think is just not serious about how you win the presidency.”

Read more: http://latino.foxnews.com/latino/politics/2012/02/20/marco-rubio-is-top-choice-for-vp-among-gop-voters-in-new-poll/#ixzz1mxABrlY2

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WHAT IS HARRY REID SAYING ABOUT HISPANICS?

THE HISPANIC BLOG BY JESSICA MARIE GUTIERREZ

Conservative Latino leader knocks Harry Reid

photo by the Associate Press

Alfonso Aguilar, a former Bush administration official who now heads the Latino Partnership for Conservative Principles think tank, said he was especially offended by Reid’s suggestion that Rubio was “supposedly” representing all Hispanics – and therefore should have backed Aponte from the start.

“It’s appalling for the Senate Majority Leader and Obama surrogates to question Sen. Rubio’s commitment to the Latino community, and more specifically the Puerto Rican community,” Aguilar wrote in an email. “This blatant attempt at racial identity politics is offensive and condescending to all Latinos.”

“Sen. Reid, based on Sen. Rubio’s initial opposition to the confirmation of Aponte, questions whether Senator is defending ‘Hispanic issues.’ The hypocrisy cannot be more shocking. Wasn’t Reid the man who helped lead the Democrats‘ filibuster of Bush nominee to the federal bench, Miguel Estrada, a Harvard trained and extremely experienced attorney, who was also a Honduran immigrant? Was Reid working against ‘Hispanic issues’ then?” he wrote.

Read More: http://www.politico.com/politico44/2012/02/conservative-latino-leader-knocks-harry-reid-114728.html

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