Politico on Sunday featured two pieces at its website that make one wonder if Republican senator-elect Marco Rubio of Florida should be a strong contender for the GOP's vice presidential nominee in 2012.
"Hispanics Emerge As Key 2012 Wildcard" laid the groundwork:
Hispanic voters saved the Democratic Party Tuesday - buoying Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, keeping California blue, playing an outsized role in preserving the party’s Senate majority and demonstrating a partisan loyalty Democrats didn’t exactly earn in two years of inaction on immigration policy.
But that support is anything but certain for 2012 and both parties face difficult and immediate choices when it comes to the Latino vote as they position themselves for the presidential election. [....]
An election eve poll conducted by Latino Decisions found Hispanics weren’t nearly as motivated to vote Democratic as they were to show solidarity with the Latino community. Forty-seven percent of Latinos in eight key states told the pollsters they voted to “represent and support” Hispanics, 31 percent to support Democrats and 12 percent to back Republicans.
The son of Cuban immigrants, Rubio advertised heavily on Spanish-language television, broadcasting his personal story as the centerpiece of an inspirational message to Hispanics.
Similar to former President George W. Bush, Rubio spoke about his opposition to legalization “in a respectful and empathetic tone, focusing on law and order aspects and not using people who cross the border illegally as political punching-bags,” said Ana Navarro, a Miami-based Republican strategist and adviser to Sen. John McCain’s 2008 presidential campaign.
Rubio won between 55 percent and 62 percent of the Latino vote.
Not so subtly, Politico then hit readers with "New Republican Stars Get V.P. Look":
By far the most buzzed-about is newly minted Sen. Marco Rubio, the Florida Republican whose trajectory is so obvious that he was tapped to give his party’s first post-election weekly address on Saturday.
Obviously, Politico likes the sound of Vice President Rubio.