Florida Senator Marco Rubio is proving himself as formable contender for the Republican presidential nomination. After winning the latest Republican primary debate, Rubio is rising n the polls and attacking the Republicans main opponent Democratic nomination frontrunner Hillary Clinton. Rubio, 44 is capitalizing on being the youngest candidate of this presidential election cycle along with Texas Senator Ted Cruz.
Rubio has attacked Clinton on her age, 68, her generation and she invited it with the comment she made at the second Democratic primary debate. Rubio released an ad on Sunday, Nov. 15, 2015 entitled “This election is a generational choice” a major theme of his campaign. Two days later on Wednesday, Nov. 18 Rubio saw himself moved up to tied for second place in a new New Hampshire poll, which MassInc Polling Group conducted for WBUR radio. Rubio remains in third in national poll, maintain that position in the latest Bloomberg Politics poll released Thursday morning, Nov. 19.
Rubio has made the campaign about a generational choice, a theme he began with his presidential campaign announcement last April. The Florida Senator has continued that theme as a plan of attack on his opponents including fellow Floridian and former mentor the former Governor Jeb Bush. Democratic frontrunner Hillary Clinton however, has given Rubio the perfect opportunity to use that attack strategy on her in a little pre-general election trial run.
During the second Democratic presidential debate hosted by CBS News on Saturday evening, Nov. 14, 2015 at Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa Clinton made a misstep that is already coming back to haunt her. When Clinton was asked if the activism against racism at the University of Missouri “should be replicated,” Clinton gave an answer that aged her. Clinton responded, “I come from the ’60s, a long time ago. There was a lot of activism on campus – civil rights activism, antiwar activism, women’s rights activism – and I do appreciate the way young people are standing up and speaking out.”
It was Clinton’s biggest mistake of the debate emphasizing her age, saying she is “from the ’60s.” Clinton, 68 was young as First Lady in the 1990s, but now she seems from another age or era, one that past with the first Clinton presidency, and it is showing with Clinton have problems connecting with millennials. College Republicans affirmed that problem tweeted “Don’t worry @HillaryClinton – we could tell by your old policy ideas!”
Rubio took advantage of it as many thought he would, his campaign quickly released on Monday, Nov. 16 a web ad entitled, “This election is a generational choice.” The ad places Clinton in the 1960s replaying her debate comment, appearing inside a TV from the sixties surrounded by a house in sixties décor. Rubio then says “This election better be about the future, not the past.”
Rubio strategy emphasizing his youth seems to be working. In the new New Hampshire poll for WBUR radio, Rubio sees himself tied in second place with retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson with 11 percent support. Recently Carson has been topping some the GOP field’s national polls, battling with real estate mogul Donald Trump who topped this poll in New Hampshire with 22 percent. Rubio is the top establishment candidate in the large Republican field that is beginning to shrink as it time approaches the official start of primary season.
Rubio’s support has risen dramatically in this New Hampshire poll after a pair strong debate performances. In September, he only had two percent support and in the last poll taken two weeks ago he had nine percent support. The poll also found that Rubio was the winner of the Republican primary debate held on Nov. 10 in Milwaukee with 36 percent of respondents feeling that way, while only 16 percent gave second place honors to Texas Senator Ted Cruz.
Rubio is also holding on to third spot nationally in the latest Bloomberg Politics poll with 12 percent support. Trump remains the frontrunner and on top of poll with 24 percent support followed by Carson in second place with 20 percent support from Republican and Republican leaning independent voters. Texas Senator Ted Cruz comes in fourth with 9 percent.
Bloomberg pitted Rubio and Cruz together for supporters to compare. Rubio won in almost all categories including the “candidate with the better temperament to be president, work more effectively with Congress, and has the right values to lead the country.” Cruz however won when it came to “solving the problem of illegal immigration,” Rubio lost on immigration, because he previously supported the 2013 Senate bipartisan immigration reform bill.
It is not surprising that Rubio is seeing his stock rise, in a campaign filled with baby boomers Rubio and also Cruz, 44 represent Generation X, who are in prime time to reach leadership posts. Paul Ryan at 45 became Speaker of the House in October, the youngest speaker since the Reconstruction era and the first Gen Xer to assume a national leadership post in The US. Canada has already voted a Gen Xer for their Prime Minister, Liberal Party Leader Justin Trudeau was voted in on Oct. 19 and assumed power on Nov. 4. The youthful, good looking and cool prime minister with his young family has enthralled the public all over the world including in the US. The US who has always been captivated by youthful leaders from John F. Kennedy to Bill Clinton to Barack Obama should seriously consider looking for a leader that represents the future rather than Clinton a relic from the past.