Burned by his support for comprehensive immigration reform, Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) has settled on a new issue to champion — the “War on Poverty.”
Following in the footsteps of House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA) and Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI), a potential 2016 contender, Rubio has selected reforms to anti-poverty programs and the American dream as issues he will discuss in a speech Wednesday hosted by the American Enterprise Institute.
Rubio, himself a potential 2016 presidential candidate, has struggled to regain footing with the right after he helped pass a Senate bill that included a pathway to citizenship for millions of the nation’s undocumented immigrants. He previously attempted to curry favor with a quixotic demand to shut down the government if Obamacare wasn’t defunded, an effort that failed last fall.
The speech marks the 50th anniversary of President Lyndon Johnson’s declaration of the “War on Poverty”, and comes as Republicans continue to oppose an extension of emergency unemployment compensation, which expired for 1.3 million Americans on Dec. 28. The Senate will hold a key test vote Monday, and its passage is less than certain due to a lack of Republican support.
Igor Bobic is the assistant editor of Talking Points Memo, helping oversee the site’s coverage of politics and policy in Washington. While originally from Bosnia and Herzegovina, Igor feels best at home on the beaches of Southern California. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.