He was the first serious Tea Party candidate to rise to national attention, and now he will be one of the leaders in the new conservative movement in the GOP Senate caucus. Democrats feared his rise so much that the White House and Bill Clinton tried muscling their own candidate out of Rubio’s race in a shabby deal that essentially put Barack Obama in the role of the same sleazy back-room party leader that he demonized in his presidential campaign. If anyone deserves a victory lap tonight regardless of the content of his speech, it’s Marco Rubio, but as we have come to expect, Rubio really rose to the occasion: