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Welcome to Miami on -- -- Tuesday morning I'll sit down with governor Mitt Romney as he campaigns here in Miami.
-- many candidates are spending more time in Florida this year the latest state polling in the GOP nomination battle is from eighteen days ago.
Could -- -- -- at Florida registered Republican voters choosing Herman -- first at 27%.
Mitt Romney at 21%.
Newt Gingrich at seventeen and Rick Perry -- five.
No other candidate broke 4%.
But as we've seen in this race a lot can happen in just eighteen days.
Today we caught up with Florida's freshman senator an up and comer in his party.
About politics policy and the presidential race.
We are now watching political -- the -- In our time and it's fascinating to -- -- in a classroom while it's happening.
As much as he can Republican senator Marco Rubio becomes.
Professor rubio at a Florida International University class he -- teaches on political parties he was the individual now empowered to start movements.
That are independent.
For political parties or even traditional political structures the lesson today.
Taps into his Tea Party groups and the nontraditional campaign that vaulted him to victory in 2010 there is no way that a candidate.
With a National Republican Senatorial Committee and much of the leadership of the state party was against -- won.
But you can win in 2010 and 2012.
Now fast rising star in the GOP senator rubio says it's hard to overstate the importance of his state in the nominating process.
With the Florida primary batting cleanup in January the final of the first four contests.
And a testing ground with -- general election implications if you look at the -- lined up I think it's perfect.
It requires the candidates to deal of all the major issues and you wind up in state like Florida which if you can't win the Florida you can't -- -- This as the top issue of getting jobs and improving the overall economy another key issue here is immigration.
An issue that's gained prominence on the campaign trail this past week.
With speaker Gingrich coming under fire.
For mentioning a plan to start dealing with the eleven million plus illegal immigrants currently in the US.
Amnesty traditionally has been defined as a path to citizenship.
And I don't think that's what he talked about we talked about what some.
Middle road accommodation for people have been this country for a long time that -- to be explored let me tell you how we get to that point we're not at that point yet -- I think speaker Gingrich would acknowledge that.
And here's how you get to that point first and foremost as you've got you've got to win the conference the American people back that begins to border security where I think there has been progress made.
More progress needs to be made.
Also on on employment enforcement we need to create a mechanism more employers are required to and can safely and reliably and cost effectively verify that the people that they're hiring.
Are legally in this country.
I think we accomplished step one.
Step two would be -- to create a legal immigration system that works and that's where I think Republicans need to focus more on it's not just what work pants -- clearly against illegal immigration.
We are for legal immigration and we support legal immigration and quite frankly the legal immigration system we have now doesn't function.
So let's -- -- modernize our legal immigration system let's reform our visa programs let's create a functional guest worker program.
So that it works and I think -- you do those two things then I think you can move to step three and that is beginning to answer the very difficult question.
Of what to do with 1112 million people -- -- in this country.
Many of whom have been here for very long time many of whom are brought here is very young children have grown up their entire lives.
Our high academic achievers and have a lot to contribute to America's future.
I think most Americans are willing to figure out a way to to perhaps deal without issue but only after the first two parts and modernization of our legal immigration system.
-- real enforcement of our immigration law so.
When the word amnesty -- -- around in a primary.
Election environment is that dangerous.
When the issue of immigration is so sensitive I think it's important for Republicans to understand that when you talk about immigration.
These aren't just statistics these are human beings these are real people.
Yes some -- or some people come here and to take advantage of our country of laws but many come here because they can't find a better life because their kids are hungry.
Because -- wife is suffering because of family isn't a dire straight.
And they're gonna do anything they can to help the families out in their jobs in the United States that that are willing to hire.
And so we need to recognize that these are human beings that are looking for a better life unfortunately.
You know they've either come here and violation of the law or we don't have a functional immigration system in place for them to be able to come here.
When it comes to US policy towards Cuba and increasing calls for the US to end its economic embargo of the Castro regime.
Senator rubio insist Cuba needs to make the first move and I always chuckle because everyone's always talking about -- as the US gonna change towards Cuba.
And my question is when -- Cuba cannot change towards the US.
And once -- gonna change towards its own people.
When -- -- gonna join other countries in the hemisphere even Nicaragua and Venezuela and have elections and when they do that we should talk about changing our relationship and until they do that.
I think we should be on the side of democracy.
Back to the presidential campaign.
Are you going to endorse I have a lot of people running that have had relationships where there have been helpful to me.
And so I'm really not inclined to endorse in the primary I am looking forward to having a nominee because I think I'm confident looking at this field looking at the way the field -- shaping up.
That we as Republicans are gonna nominate someone who is going to be a very clear and very appealing alternative to the direction president Obama's taking America.
You've been asked this question ad nauseam about a possible you know if you were asked to be vice presidential nominee.
And you were pretty definitive in that you said you like being Florida senator and that you would say no.
That's changed over thank and that hasn't check it out over Turkey that have.
As Suffolk University poll suggest if you were on a ticket no matter who the nominee is that you could somehow sway Florida.
To go GOP.
Would you reevaluate that.
See I don't believe those polls and I can show -- -- says the opposite the bottom line is presidential elections are decided by the top of the ticket.
Can someone on the bottom of the ticket weigh you down or slow you down sure but but.
Ultimately what decides election where people vote for is for the president of the United States that that's.
The guy or that -- that of the gals going to be calling the shots and so if someone wants to win Florida.
It's very simple you have to come to Florida yet to explain to the people Florida what it is you're gonna do your president.
To create jobs to grow our economy to secure our national defense to win the war on terror to deal with a broken immigration system to bring freedom and democracy to Cuba into the Western Hemisphere to stand with our friends and Israel these are the issues that are important -- America they have to be very important Florida and -- have to be articulated by presidential candidate not by vice presidential.
Share in the same place still enough yeah absolutely.
Sender rubio is now working with democratic senator Chris codes from Delaware to try to pass -- scaled back jobs bill -- at least make a list of things we do agree on and let's get those things done.
And -- and at least let's do that and so I hope that that's what we'll do would you react I think it's important we do it people are desperate for any glimmer of good news out of Washington.
Senator rubio today professor rubio says he's learning something every day.
About trying to get things done in the political spotlight.
That the take well -- it -- whether you agree west distracting them.
Even I broke my concentration it.
I asset under rubio about the recent charge that he embellished his parents story coming to the US from Cuba in the fifties.
He said he learned a great deal from that incident as well the specific years he said were off on his website and that was his mistake.
But he insisted he wasn't trying to fool anyone whose parents were Cuban exiles who would have liked to have gone back to their ancestral home.
He says in the spotlight every detail counts.
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