Marco Rubio Skips CPAC: Is He Purposefully Shunning the Conservative Movement?

Last year Marco Rubio delivered the keynote speech at the Conservative Political Action Conference. Headlining perhaps one of the most important centralized Conservative events in the country officially made Rubio a right wing superstar. In fact, his picture is prominently displayed on graphics promoting this year's CPAC shindig, and yet Rubio has announced that he'll be skipping the festivities. Taken with his decision not to join the Senate's Tea Party caucus, does this mean Rubio is now trying to publicly distance himself from certain fringes of the conservative movement? 

While nothing about Rubio's work in his first weeks as a senator suggests his politically positions are actually moderating, he does seem to be seeking a low-key profile. Perhaps he knows he was elected by Floridians, a state with a notoriously moderate and indecisive voting base, and has chosen to focus more on the entire state that actually elected him, rather than the movement that made him a star. 

"His focus is on Florida and his schedule that week will reflect it," Spokesman Alex Burgos told Naked Politics.

Indeed instead of speaking at CPAC, scheduled between February 10th and 12th, Rubio will be making an appearance at the much more low key Pinellas County Lincoln Day Dinner.

The Hill reports that Rubio's moves are calculated. While it may be one of the few ways Rubio reflects Hillary Clinton, he's simply following the path taken by the former First Lady when she was elected to the Senate in 2000. After intense media super-stardom, rather than basking in the lime light Rubio is focusing on becoming accustomed to the Senate and working on behalf of his state.

Barack Obama also took a similar approach. Of course, we all know where Obama and Clinton's paths eventually led: presidential campaigns. But before Rubio even thinks about that, he's working hard to prove to Florida that he's actually working hard. 

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Kyle Munzenrieder