So their loathing of the “amnesty” bill eliminates any chance they’d back one of its co-authors for president, yes? “No,” they say in unison. Their reasons are rooted in a kind of New England Republican pragmatism. First, it’s way too early for early state voters to be vocally dismissive of any potential candidate who may spend much of the next year showering them with attention. They also don’t want to write off a dynamic speaker from a battleground state who happens to be the son of Cuban immigrants at a time when many Republicans seem more interested in driving away Hispanic voters.
Perhaps most important, they see Rubio blurring his position on immigration to appear closer to the party’s base on the issue. And they’re willing to play along.
“We think he believes like we believe,” Kindler said. “He’s getting himself more educated on how to go about it, taking care of the immigration problem. This is a new day. This is a new year. He has a chance to listen to what we have to say.”