We have a surplus of good Republican candidates running for President in 2016, one of the best potential Republican candidate fields in many elections. As such, it does beg a question of whether candidates who run with a low probability of victory should instead bow out and pursue lesser office. Both [mc_name name=’Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL)’ chamber=’senate’ mcid=’R000595′ ] and [mc_name name=’Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY)’ chamber=’senate’ mcid=’P000603′ ] have the dilemma of being up for re-election in 2016. For Marco Rubio, it will be impossible to both run for President and US Senate. And so, here’s a completely different reason to say no to a Rubio run for President: We need him in the US Senate!!
The problems of Rubio leaving an open seat to run for President were noted in this recent article in National Review:
“Rubio has made clear that if he runs for president, he won’t also run for reelection to the Senate. All signs point to a Rubio bid for the White House, meaning the Sunshine State can expect an open-seat race.”
Why is this a problem? With Marco Rubio, the seat is a shoo-in for re-election. Without him, we might lose the seat in an expensive race:
Electing a Republican to Marco Rubio’s Senate seat — quite possibly going to be left empty as the senator runs for president in 2016 – is not Mission: Impossible for the Florida GOP. Just Mission: Extremely Difficult.
… two names most often mentioned on the Democratic side are [mc_name name=’Rep. Patrick Murphy (D-FL)’ chamber=’house’ mcid=’M001191′ ] of Jupiter, and the infamously combative [mc_name name=’Rep. Alan Grayson (D-FL)’ chamber=’house’ mcid=’G000556′ ], http://www.nationalreview.com/article/415746/gop-doomed-lose-marco-rubios-senate-seat-jim-geraghty
But wait, it’s even worse than that: Over 20 Republican Senators are up for re-election in 2016, making the Republican Senate majority itself in danger. So worst case: We lose the GOP majority, and Senator Grayson can join [mc_name name=’Sen. Bernard Sanders (I-VT)’ chamber=’senate’ mcid=’S000033′ ] and [mc_name name=’Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-CA)’ chamber=’senate’ mcid=’B000711′ ] and [mc_name name=’Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA)’ chamber=’senate’ mcid=’W000817′ ] in the comeback-demagogue [mc_name name=’Sen. Harry Reid (D-NV)’ chamber=’senate’ mcid=’R000146′ ]’s Democrat Senate to do Hillary’s bidding in 2017.
Is that what we want?
Rubio doesn’t have much of a chance to be the Presidential nominee. He’s running 6th or more in rank in most polls, and he lacks the executive experience of the Governors running. He’ll be one of three Senators in the ring. Yet [mc_name name=’Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX)’ chamber=’senate’ mcid=’C001098′ ] and Senator Paul have natural constituencies in the primary electorate, movement conservatives and libertarians respectively, while Marco Rubio falls in the cracks between movement conservatives and the establishment. Rubio crossed the Tea Party voters by his flip-flopping and double-crossing on immigration and amnesty. He ran against Crist as soft on immigration, and then became soft himself on it. So he’s not the Tea Party favorite he was in 2010 when running against Crist.
Further, his closeness to Jeb Bush (Bush was something of a political mentor to him) means that Rubio’s fundraising and support opportunities are somewhat closed off by Bush’s entry in the race. It would make a lot of sense for Marco Rubio, in fact, to bow out and use that to garner further support from Jeb Bush for his future political career.
For the Senate, though, Rubio will be heavily favored for re-election. It would be a shame for Marco Rubio to waste his political career on a futile bid for President and put the Republican Senate majority at risk by turning a safe Republican seat into a toss-up seat. Rubio will make a good Senator for 6 more years, and Rubio is young enough that a future Presidential bid or VP slot make a lot of sense. So … Marco Rubio for U.S. Senate!