Rubio weighs in on McConnell’s election fight
October 20th, 2013
11:31 AM ET
8 years ago

Rubio weighs in on McConnell’s election fight

Washington (CNN) – One-time tea party favorite Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Florida, said Sunday he supports Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell’s bid for re-election in 2014.

McConnell is facing a primary challenge in his home state of Kentucky from businessman Matt Bevin, who was endorsed by the influential Senate Conservatives Fund on Friday.

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"Matt Bevin is a true conservative who will fight to stop the massive spending, bailouts, and debt that are destroying our country. He is not afraid to stand up to the establishment and he will do what it takes to stop Obamacare,” Senate Conservatives Fund Director Matt Hoskins said in a statement.

But McConnell said he’s skeptical of attacks from the far-right.

"I've endured millions of dollars in attack ads that have called me a right-wing fanatic over the years. I think my opponents in the primary are going to have a hard time convincing Kentucky primary voters that I'm some kind of liberal," McConnell said on CBS’s “Face The Nation.”

“I enjoy the support of the most famous tea party senator in America, Rand Paul,” McConnell added. “I’m supported by Marco Rubio. Pat Toomey. Two other tea party favorites who were elected in 2010.”

The Kentucky senator has faced backlash from the tea party for his brokering of a deal to both end the government shutdown and raise the debt ceiling.

But Rubio, himself facing flak from the far right over his stance on immigration reform, said McConnell is doing a good job in tough circumstances.

"I do support Sen. McConnell's re-election. I think he's trying to lead our conference. It's a diverse conference with a lot of different opinions, and that's a tough job to begin with. And then, of course, he's got to represent his own state,” Rubio said on “Fox News Sunday.”

Filed under: Kentucky • Marco Rubio • Mitch McConnell • Senate
soundoff (11 Responses)
  1. Kinard

    Wow, someone's desperate. They recruited a lightweight.

    October 20, 2013 11:39 am at 11:39 am |
  2. vic , nashville ,tn

    Moving towards 2016 good move by Rubio

    October 20, 2013 11:43 am at 11:43 am |
  3. Louis Grue Jr.

    I'm for term limits for congress, but they in no way will vote for it, so therefore, we the people must vote them all out after 10yrs. service. If term limits are good for the President then It should be good for congress. If America want's to bring the country back to It's true potential and become once again the #1 free Democratic/Republic that everyone came here for, we need to have new conservative blood installed every 10yrs.

    October 20, 2013 12:39 pm at 12:39 pm |
  4. Rick McDaniel

    I think McConnell is not a true conservative, and does not hold the same values as true conservatives.

    October 20, 2013 12:48 pm at 12:48 pm |
  5. Thomas

    Marco Rubio needs to didtance himself from the crazy Cuban "Ted Cruz " and the Teanut jobs .

    He will never carried a presidential nomination if he look like a teapot dome !

    October 20, 2013 12:56 pm at 12:56 pm |
  6. Gary

    Who is this Rubio guy you speak of?

    October 20, 2013 01:34 pm at 1:34 pm |
  7. Larry in Houston

    yep, that's right, we need to keep the "Lifers" IN....
    That's the big problem in this country, If the voters ever want real change, and want real people to change, the "lifers" has to go... But 'ol Mitch needs to get a few more earmarks for his state, just like he did, when he & Reid negotiated the shutdown, behind closed doors, getting a deal for 'ole Mitch, for several million, for his state.

    October 20, 2013 02:13 pm at 2:13 pm |
  8. Michael Benjamin

    McConnell doesn't have the support of Senator Rafael Edward "Ted" Cruz-R-TX. Mitch is old and needs to go!

    October 20, 2013 02:27 pm at 2:27 pm |
  9. Tampa Tim

    Fewer Floridians support Rubio. His votes against seniors, veterans, the uninsured, the poor, and workers, are hurting him. 2016 could be a good year for his democratic opponent.

    October 20, 2013 02:50 pm at 2:50 pm |
  10. Name jk. Sfl. GOP CRUZ conservatives,the garbage of America.

    I have a solution , elect the democrats and get rid of these GOP teaparty fools!!!!!

    October 20, 2013 03:34 pm at 3:34 pm |
  11. Thomas

    In addition to slamming the Tea Party, centrist Republicans also have had unkind words in recent days for the conservative Heritage Foundation.

    October 20, 2013 04:25 pm at 4:25 pm |