From cnn.com

From cnn.com

A youthful, charismatic speaker, junior Senator Marco Rubio of Florida announced his candidacy on April 13, 2015 with the daring claim that he alone is best equipped to lead the United States into a “New American Century.” Many have expected Rubio, a Cuban-American, along with fellow presidential hopeful Texas Senator Ted Cruz, to garner more Hispanic support for the GOP; however, due to the anti-immigration rhetoric of the Republican party, Trump’s statements and Rubio’s own vague responses to questions regarding his policies for immigration, this hope has been largely unfulfilled. Currently, Rubio and Cruz, with more than 8 percent each, are tied for third place in the Republican poll behind Trump and Carson. 

Keep on reading for a quick overview on his ideas and beliefs:

Background: Marco Antonio Rubio was born on May 28, 1971 in Miami to Cuban immigrant parents, who instilled the idea of the “American Dream” in him from an early age. Rubio obtained his degree in political science from the University of Florida in 1993 and his law degree from the University of Miami School of Law in 1996. After being elected into the West Miami City Commission in 1998, he was elected into the Florida House of Representatives. In 2010, Rubio was elected into the US Senate. Though officially identifying as Roman Catholic, Rubio has been influenced by Mormonism as well as Southern Baptist ideals throughout his life. 

Foreign Policy:

  • Calls for higher defense spending
  • Believes in a tougher stance against”threats” such as  North Korea, Russia, China, Iran and racial jihadists; wants heavy military intervention against ISIS
  • Claims that the only “pro-American, free enterprise democracy” in the Middle East is Israel, believing that we should back Israel at whatever cost
  • Wants to reform immigration system to prioritize skilled workers over those with family ties
  • Supports tightening border security
  • Opposes special pathway to citizenship for undocumented immigrants

The Economy:

  • Against raising the minimum wage
  • Cut corporate taxes to 25%
  • Permit companies to bring overseas revenue without additional taxation
  • Wants to help “hard-working” families by increasing the maximum per-child tax credit to $2,500
  • Replace the Earned Income Credit with a $500 per year enhancement credit
  • 100% deduction of expenses for businesses making equipment purchases
  • Would keep fast-growing industries  in the “sharing economy” like Uber, TaskRabbit and Airbnb largely unregulated

Domestic Issues:

  • Repeal Obamacare and institute new health care law that allows people to buy health insurance from any state
  • Require schools to tell students how much they can earn from their degrees after graduation and wants more flexible college classes for working adults
  • Wants increased access to training and education for lower and middle-income Americans, embrace vocational schools
  • Has limited support for medical marijuana, heavily against legalization of recreational marijuana
  • Thinks that new, stricter gun laws would not prevent mass shootings from taking place, instead advocates for deeper examination of mental illness

Social Issues:

  • Believes that marriage law should be between a man and a woman & decided at the state level
  • Supports anti-abortion legislation even if it includes exceptions like rape and incest, but personally believes that “you do not correct one tragedy with a second tragedy”
  • Opposed to making sexual orientation a protected class under civil rights laws
  • Voted against giving LGBT Americans protection from discrimination in the workplace

Quotes:

“We must change the decisions we are making by changing the people who are making them.”

“The path to the middle class is narrower today than it has been for generations, and the American dream so many achieved in the last century is in peril.”

“If there’s one thing that matters in the 21st century economy, it’s innovation. In order to be the leading economy on earth, America must be the most innovative economy on earth.”

“The real essence of my family’s story is not about the date my parents first entered the United States. Or whether they traveled back and forth between the two nations. Or even the date they left Fidel Castro’s Cuba forever and permanently settled here. The essence of my family story is why they came to America in the first place, and why they had to stay.

“I live in an exceptional country where the son of a bartender and a maid can have the same dreams and the same future as those who come from power and privilege.”

Muppet he most resembles: Pepe the King Prawn. They’re both proud of their heritage, extremely ambitious and hard to make out at times.

Pepe-thumbs-up
Photo from muppet.wikia.com

Sources: marcorubio.com, wsj.com, politco.com, usatoday.com, hrc.com