To be a U.S. senator, you must be an American citizen, a resident in the state where you're running, and at least 30 years old. Ideally, you should also be politically savvy and a good speaker. What you don't need, apparently, is knowledge of how to use a phone.
At least, that's what a recent photo posted of U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio on Twitter seems to convey.
This morning, Miami-Dade County mayoral candidate Esteban "Steve" Bovo posted a photo of Rubio at Bovo's campaign office, with the caption: "Thank you Senator @marcorubio for taking time out of your busy schedule to call voters for the final stretch!"
Thank you Senator @marcorubio for taking time out of your busy schedule to call voters for the final stretch! If you want to move Miami-Dade forward, get involved with my campaign today! https://t.co/1zmz8Qb0pm pic.twitter.com/gZwq4H595o— Esteban "Steve" Bovo (@SteveBovo) August 12, 2020
While it sure seemed nice of Rubio to support his fellow Miami Republican, some Twitter users noticed that the senator's headset wasn't connected to anything and the laptop in front of him appeared to be turned off. A few poked fun at the very obviously posed photo:
RT This if you got a call from your Senator asking you to vote for Bovo— Maydee Martinez (@maydeeam) August 12, 2020
.... No, no one? https://t.co/7OY4rgEhVY
This photo, of Marco Rubio pretending to talk to the people using headphones that are not actually plugged in, is actually the perfect metaphor for the GOP. https://t.co/6ySlMIUBlR— Norman Brannon (@normanbrannon) August 12, 2020
New Times left numerous voicemails with Rubio's office and Bovo's campaign team seeking an explanation, but neither camp responded.
This isn't the first snafu the Florida senator has found himself in this summer. In July, after the death of Georgia Rep. John Lewis, Rubio posted a photo of himself with the late Maryland Rep. Elijah Cummings, writing: "It was an honor to know & be blessed with the opportunity to serve in Congress with JohnLewis a genuine & historic American Hero."
The case of mistaken identity garnered Rubio a load of negative national media coverage, with some accusing him of racism for confusing the two men.
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As for Bovo? The county commissioner, who's running for the county mayoral seat in the August 18 primary election, has made a name for himself as a staunch conservative who allies himself with President Donald Trump.
The Bovo campaign Twitter account has at times jumped on right-wing bandwagons to drum up votes, including openly endorsing Goya Foods after the president of the company praised Trump.
So there you have it: a photo op with Rubio to show solidarity between Florida's Republican politicians — with the typical Marco touch.