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U.S. Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) addresses the American Conservative Union's annual Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in Washington, February 9, 2012.
New poll shows Republicans still like Rubio despite supporting reform
Check out some of the Republicans quotes in this article from The Hill about how Marco Rubio needs to win back the GOP base after supporting immigration reform:
“There's terrible disappointment with Marco Rubio specifically,” says Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah), an opponent of the Senate immigration bill that Rubio helped write and pass. [...]

“He's definitely on the rehabilitation trail,” said Rep. Kenny Marchant (R-Texas). [...]

“I think if he comes out [to Iowa], he's very articulate, he talks about his conservative values, what brought him here, he can come back, there's no question,” Rep. Tom Latham (R-Iowa) said about Rubio’s chances in his early-voting primary state. [...]

“I don't think it helped him at all. But nothing ventured, nothing gained. He's a cool guy, he can recover. But he learned a big lesson,” said Rep. Pete Sessions (R-Texas), a former leader of the campaign operation for House Republicans. [...]

“He's just a delightful person and he's talented. If it was a negative I think he can recover from it,” said Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.), a leading opponent of the Senate immigration bill.

So, according to these guys, Rubio was guilty of a major political screwup. They don't write him off completely—after all "he's a cool guy" and can be "very articulate"—but other than Jeff Sessions, none of them even contemplate the possibility that Rubio's support for immigration reform was anything but a negative.

But even though they are all eager to give Rubio advice on how he can claw his way back from the doghouse, the real question is whether Rubio actually did himself serious political damage by supporting immigration reform. The way these guys talk about it, you'd think that Rubio supporting immigration reform was the political equivalent of Joe Lieberman enthusiastically supporting Iraq in 2004. The thing is, it's not. For better or worse, Republicans still love Marco Rubio.

Today's Quinnipiac thermometer poll shows that Rubio is the third-most popular Republican they tested, trailing only Paul Ryan and Ted Cruz. Ryan's thermometer score was 68.7 among Republicans. Cruz's was 65.6 and Rubio's was 65.1.

In other words, if the Republican base is suffering through "terrible disappointment" in Marco Rubio as Jason Chaffetz claimed, they sure are doing it in a weird way. Instead of punishing him for supporting immigration reform, they continue to hold him in high esteem.

It's not just Rubio, either. Ryan, the most popular Republican (among Republicans), also supports immigration reform. And John Boehner, who has refused to bring the Senate bill up for a vote, is the least popular Republican.

These numbers don't show that supporting immigration reform is a huge positive—Ted Cruz is on the opposite side of the issue as Rubio and Ryan, yet falls in between them in popularity. But the number do show that despite what the Jason Chaffetz's of the GOP might say, supporting immigration reform isn't political kryptonite for Republicans. That's a lesson Republicans are going to need to learn if there's any chance for immigration reform to pass during this Congress.

Originally posted to The Jed Report on Mon Aug 05, 2013 at 08:52 AM PDT.

Also republished by Daily Kos.

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Comment Preferences

  •  "if there's any chance for immigration reform to (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Matt Z

    pass during this Congress."

    Did I miss the part where there IS a chance for immigration reform to pass during this Congress?

    The GOPer House won't entertain it. Boehner is toast if he let's it come up. Immigration reform isn't happening.

  •  Rubio big on defunding Obamacare....this week. (0+ / 0-)
  •  The GOP is counting on Rubio to reel in the (0+ / 0-)

    Hispanic vote.  It's obvious.

    Building a better America with activism, cooperation, ingenuity and snacks.

    by judyms9 on Mon Aug 05, 2013 at 09:37:57 AM PDT

    •  GOP thinks hispanics are stoopid. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
    •  Exactly, they don't have to "like" him personally (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      a2nite, Matt Z

      they hope they're gonna ride his funny sounding name to national victory with all the "dark" people.  

      After all, it's not the inane, racist, paranoid beliefs they've clung to since 1958, it's the "package" that spouts them.

      They love it when they can find a "non-white" guy to parrot the company line.   They don't want their daughter marrying him, but they love to see him on TV.  

      Clarence Thomas is the patron saint of this ilk.  

  •  Whatever nt (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    skillet, Matt Z

    nosotros no somos estúpidos

    by a2nite on Mon Aug 05, 2013 at 09:42:25 AM PDT

  •  Ryan's temperature was 68.7? (0+ / 0-)

    I KNEW he wasn't human!  I just KNEW it!  AND THIS PROVES IT!

    I'll believe corporations are people when one comes home from Afghanistan in a body bag.

    by mojo11 on Mon Aug 05, 2013 at 09:45:17 AM PDT

  •  I would say that the average Republican voter (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Wildthumb, Matt Z

    not people like you and I of the right, but Joe Six-Pack in Des Moines, knows little to nothing about the immigration bill. It was generally passed with little fanfare in the Senate and has quickly died in the House. It won't be until the primaries where everybody on stage gets to beat him over the head for an hour about handouts to illegals and amnesty for criminals that he's going to take a hit.

  •  Immigration reform is popular w/ even Republicans (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Wildthumb, Matt Z

    There's a simple answer to that.

    Even Republican primary voters support immigration reform, as today's Washington Post reported:

    The problem is, one-third of GOP primary voters adamantly oppose immigration reform - and it's this racist fringe who has held all Republican politicians hostage.

  •  I read "rehabilitation trail" as 'habitrail'. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Egalitare, Matt Z
    “He's definitely on the rehabilitation trail,” said Rep. Kenny Marchant.
    Now I'm stuck with the image of Rubio racing around in an over-sized plastic display case, desperately seeking refreshment, (or atonement, it's hard to tell).
  •  Ah, yes. The right can point to Latinos like Cruz (0+ / 0-)

    and Rubio, and blacks like Allen West to "prove" that there's no racism there. They looooove to have them around, so long as they don't stray too far from the herd.

    "They come, they come To build a wall between us We know they won't win."--Crowded House, "Don't Dream It's Over."

    by Wildthumb on Mon Aug 05, 2013 at 09:53:38 AM PDT

  •  “He's definitely on the rehabilitation trail,” (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Matt Z

    Drink More Water!

    Warning - some snark may be above‽ (-9.50; -7.03)‽ eState4Column5©2013 "I’m not the strapping young Muslim socialist that I used to be" - Barack Obama 04/27/2013

    by annieli on Mon Aug 05, 2013 at 10:02:04 AM PDT

  •  The GOP base has a core set of principles, but.... (0+ / 0-)

    in general, nationally Republicans will eschew principle for who they think is electable.

    Cruz and Ryan are the darlings of the GOP platform - tearing down the government and dismantling the safety nets - and Rubio and Christie are the guys they think can deliver that message with a smile.

    Its really only in deep red states where the GOP base will vote principle over electability, which is why the tea party has managed to dump some prime pickup opportunities. That won't happen with their national nominee.

    Team blue doesn't have a competitive left flank, so the most popular Dems tend to be the most electable. Or perhaps electability is crucial to building a firewall from GOP stupidity, in which case Obama and Hilliary's less desirable traits are tolerated for the greater good.

  •  Marco. n/t (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Matt Z

    I'm not always political, but when I am I vote Democratic. Stay Democratic, my friends. -The Most Interesting Man in the World

    by boran2 on Mon Aug 05, 2013 at 10:10:11 AM PDT

  •  My kids won't let me throw away... (0+ / 0-)

    ...their old toys either.

    When you are right you cannot be too radical; when you are wrong, you cannot be too conservative. --Martin Luther King Jr.

    by Egalitare on Mon Aug 05, 2013 at 10:13:07 AM PDT

  •  Republicans want someone they can market (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    a2nite, Matt Z

    as a candidate and who has the ability to either sell their values or package them in a way that is non-threatening.  George W. Bush was their ideal candidate.  Bush looked affable, seemed like a true believer in their causes, and never did anything without consulting the key conservative interests first (neocons on foreign policy, social conservatives on domestic policy, rich industry types on everything), and was generally able to maintain a decent level of popularity until his policies on the war, and then the economy, collapsed on him.  

    Rubio represents an adjustment in that as a latino who isn't abrasive like Cruz, he is likely to do 5%-10% better than Romney just out of the gate.  That gets them a bit closer to winning.  That's how Republicans think.

    They don't want to win elections by appealing to non-white voters.  Rather they want to sharpen divisions and race consciousness and pick off enough Democratic leaners to win 49% -50.1% of the vote.  

    Alternative rock with something to say. Check out Global Shakedown's latest album, "A Time to Recognize": Available on iTunes/Amazon, or stream it at

    by khyber900 on Mon Aug 05, 2013 at 10:38:34 AM PDT

  •  Don't Y'all Know That The Media Is Now (0+ / 0-)

    pushing Chris Christy to be the 2016 GOP nominee.  Rubio, Cruz, and Ryan are all going to be losers because the big money talkers are going with Christy.  It looks like the tea baggers are going to get another rino candidate again.  LOL.  

    PS:  Immigration reform in the house is already dead.

    "Don't Let Them Catch You With Your Eyes Closed"

    by rssrai on Mon Aug 05, 2013 at 11:11:51 AM PDT

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