Tuesday, November 21, 2017
Politics

Mitt Romney quells rumors that Marco Rubio not being vetted for VP

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Another day, another series of twists in the ongoing will-Marco-Rubio-be-VP-saga.

Early Tuesday, ABC News reported that Rubio was not being vetted by Mitt Romney's vice presidential search team, a report that was later confirmed by the Washington Post.

The ABC News report said that Rubio had not been asked to complete any questionnaires or turn over financial documents typically required of potential vice presidential candidates.

Both outlets said it was possible but unlikely Rubio could still be considered, given that Romney's vice presidential search has been ongoing for nearly two months.

Whether that reporting was wrong, or whether Romney had a change of heart over the course of the day, the GOP-nominee-in-waiting stomped out the story within 12 hours.

"There was a story that originated today apparently at ABC based upon reports of supposedly outside unnamed advisers of mine," Romney said at an event in Holland, Mich. "I can't imagine who such people are. But I can tell you this: They know nothing about the vice presidential selection or evaluation process. There are only two people in this country who know who are being vetted and who are not: And that's Beth Myers (the woman leading Romney's search) and myself. And I know Beth well. She doesn't talk to anybody. The story was entirely false. Marco Rubio is being thoroughly vetted as part of our process."

Bottom line: only two more months of speculation to go.

Rubio lines up with Big Sugar

In the U.S. Senate, Rubio and Bill Nelson often vote differently on big issues with partisan overtones. But when it comes to Big Sugar, they are simpatico.

The lawmakers last week helped defeat a measure to phase out the federal sugar quota, which is a boon to businesses in Florida. The Wall Street Journal editorial page blasted Rubio and 15 other Republicans who voted to table a reform bill sponsored by Sen. Pat Toomey, R-Pa.

"The usual sugar beet and sugar cane state suspects dominate the list, but one name leaps out — Mr. Rubio, the freshman from Florida who won his seat in 2010 while running as a tea party favorite in opposition to the crony capitalism and government meddling of the Obama Administration," the Journal writes. "Mr. Rubio nonetheless voted against consumers and for the big sugar-cane producers, including Florida's Fanjul family. Mr. Rubio thus voted to the left of the 16 Democrats who joined 30 Republicans in supporting sugar reform."

Rubio in his new book, An American Son, writes about the financial help the Fanjuls provided to his 2010 Senate campaign: "The Fanjuls suggested I spend Labor Day weekend in the Hamptons, where many of their friends and major Republican donors would spend the holiday," Rubio wrote. "Jeanette and I stayed in Mark Gerson's guesthouse. On Sunday night, Pepe and Emilia Fanjul hosted a dinner for us on their boat, and they invited former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani. Rudy stayed for the entire dinner, and afterward we talked about my campaign. He wasn't ready to endorse me yet, but he was intrigued. There was no love lost between Rudy and Charlie Crist."

FreedomWorks backs Mack

Connie Mack IV's refusal to debate his GOP primary opponents may offend some activists, but the U.S. Senate front-runner is getting a big grass roots boost.

The conservative group FreedomWorks has endorsed Mack. The endorsement comes with access to FreedomWorks' national phone-banking system. People from Ohio, for example, could now be making calls on Mack's behalf.

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