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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Marco Rubio as Donald Trump's VP? Some can dream

Donald Trump and Marco Rubio at a Republican debate in November 2015

Donald Trump and Marco Rubio at a Republican debate in November 2015

Donald Trump’s blockbuster night in Indiana got the political class buzzing about a running mate, and Marco Rubio was frequently named.

Yes, the former candidate who made small penis jokes about Trump and was tagged by Trump as “Little Marco.” The Rubio who has declared, “I’m not going to be anybody’s vice president." The Rubio who always keeps an eye on the future and is widely assumed to be pondering another run for president. Rubio also appears to have clout in the #NeverTrump crowd, though he personally did not join the movement.

But that didn’t stop the chatter Tuesday night on Fox News, social media and among political writers. There wasn’t much to go on but Rubio, who never endorsed Ted Cruz, had seemed to warm to Trump — or at least the idea Trump would be the nominee -- and would be an attractive VP pick, given his Hispanic background and foreign policy knowledge.

Rubio says he’ll support the nominee. (As of early Wednesday, he had not commented on Trump's victory.)

Still, there’s reality and Rubio’s stated desire to finish out strong in the Senate.

“I have no intention of being vice president,” Rubio said recently on Univison. “I have said it clearly. And I’m always looking for a way to serve the nation, but I don’t believe that it will be as vice president and I’m really not seeking it, I’m not requesting it and it won’t happen.”

When he was still in the race, Rubio said he would do whatever to stop Trump.

“I will campaign as hard as it takes, I will stay in this race as long as it takes,” Rubio told a crowd in Georgia in February. “A con artist will never get control of this party.

"We feel good about Tuesday. We’re gonna get a lot of delegates on Tuesday. We want to win states on Tuesday. We’re gonna win states after Tuesday,” he said. “I can tell you this, I don’t care about if I have to get in my pickup truck and drive around the country like I did when I ran for the senate. Donald Trump will never be the nominee of the party of Lincoln and Reagan.”

[Last modified: Wednesday, May 4, 2016 9:48am]


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