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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Marco Rubio's campaign spin: Chris Christie 'took his best shot and he failed'

Todd Harris, center, speaks with the media after the debate

Alex Leary | Times

Todd Harris, center, speaks with the media after the debate



While acknowledging a "tough exchange" with Chris Christie, Marco Rubio's senior strategist spun Saturday's debate performance as a win. 

"What Gov. Christie was trying to do was to knock Marco out, to kill him dead. He took his best shot and he failed," Todd Harris told reporters.

Asked why Rubio kept repeating the line about President Obama, a tactic that perplexed just about everyone, Harris said:

"Maybe unlike Chris Christie, Marco thinks that fundamentally what this election is about is defeating Democrats in November. So when he was given repeated opportunities to bash Barack Obama and to bash the record of the Democratic Party, he took every single one of those opportunities. It surprises me that any member of the media would think that Republican primary votes wouldn't be interested in hearing a candidate running for president take the fight to the Democrats. We did it repeatedly. We’re proud of it. We’re going to do it again tomorrow. And the next day, and the next day, and the next day."

Harris said Rubio's campaign had raised "three times" more money during the debate than previous debates. He said Rubio's goal is to finish in the "top tier" on Tuesday.

[Last modified: Sunday, February 7, 2016 2:55am]


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