Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) got another endorsement from a former presidential contender today as former Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal declared his support for the third-place Iowa finisher.
“We have a lot of great candidates running — a lot of my friends are running,” Jindal told Fox News this evening. “The reality is these are very dangerous times. This president has weakened our standing on the foreign stage. Our enemies don’t fear us, our friends don’t trust us. Marco has been consistent about strengthening America’s foreign policy… Marco has consistently stood up to the threat of ISIS and radical Islam.”
Jindal stressed that despite his friendships with other candidates as well as Rubio, “I do think Marco is best positioned.”
“This election is about the future. I’m an ideas guy. We have got to turn the page on the Obama administration. I offered details policies through America Next on how we rebuild our economy. Marco is doing that as well,” he said, referencing his think tank.
“This is the most important election of our lifetime. We’ve got growing dependence on government. We’ve got more and more debt being piled on our children’s backs. Marco can unify our party,” Jindal continued. “His optimistic message is bringing voters from across the party lines, from across different demographic groups. He can unify our party and he can win this election in November. We cannot afford four more years of this president’s disastrous policies. I think he is a principled conservative. I think he is the right guy to lead us forward.”
Rubio said Jindal “is going to be a huge asset to our campaign.”
“I think he has a very promising future in American politics. One of the best governors in America,” Rubio said. “We’re really excited to have him on board. This is, I think, going to be a big boost to our campaign.”
Jindal’s endorsement comes after Rubio earned the support of two others once in the crowded Republican field: former Sen. Rick Santorum (R-Pa.) and former New York Gov. George Pataki.
A new Boston Globe/Suffolk poll has Donald Trump with 29 percent in New Hampshire and Rubio at 19 percent, followed by former Ohio Gov. John Kasich with 13 percent and Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) at 7 percent. A new WBUR/MassINC poll puts Trump at 29 percent with Rubio and Cruz tied at 12 percent. And a CNN/WMUR poll has Trump with 29 percent, Rubio at 18 percent and Cruz at 13 percent.
Rubio was campaigning in New Hampshire today with Sen. Tim Scott (R-S.C.), Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-S.C.), and Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah).
House Education and Workforce Committee Chairman John Kline (R-Minn.) added his name to the list of several members of Congress who’ve endorsed Rubio this week.
“Marco Rubio offers bold and conservative plans to the challenges our country faces today which is why I am proud to endorse him for president,” Kline said in a statement. “After the failures of the past seven years, Republicans need to get behind a candidate that will govern as a conservative but can also win a general election, and Marco Rubio is that candidate.”
With Nevada next after Tuesday’s New Hampshire primary — Silver State voters go to the polls Feb. 23, followed by South Carolina on Feb. 27 — Rubio also secured the endorsement of the Las Vegas Review-Journal editorial board today.
The paper said Trump, unlike other candidates, did not show up to meet with the editors despite “many attempts” by the Review-Journal to schedule an interview.
Besides getting a thumb’s up on issues such as land rights and entitlement reform, the paper said “electability is also in Sen. Rubio’s favor.”
“Mr. Trump and Sen. Cruz, the leading GOP candidates at this point, have liabilities in November, when everyone has the chance to vote. Sen. Rubio has the ideas and the charisma to bring independents and moderates under the GOP tent,” said the endorsement.
“However, that ability should not be confused with the rush to label Sen. Rubio as an establishment candidate, as many have done in recent weeks. In an insurgency campaign featuring true outsider Mr. Trump and Sen. Cruz, an avowed enemy of the establishment, it’s not a surprising political tactic. But the idea that Sen. Rubio is an ‘establishment candidate’ simply isn’t true.”
The Rubio campaign said today that it had to switch some weekend campaign event venues to accommodate larger-than-expected crowds.
The senator’s schedule includes a Super Bowl watching party on Sunday and a Monday evening rally at Nashua Community College.