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Politics, Poland Spring and Sen. Marco Rubio - reactions to speech from around the Web

Sen. Marco Rubio delivered the Republican response to President Barack Obama's State of the Union address.
Here's a roundup of stories-reactions to Sen. Marco Rubio's speech - from the serious to the not so serious (yes, the water bottle sip became a story)

Sen. Marco Rubio delivered a forceful argument for the Republican agenda for the middle class Tuesday night, contrasting his party’s vision for economic prosperity with President Barack Obama’s call for a more robust federal government.
In his bilingual response to the State of the Union address, infused with personal anecdotes as a child of immigrants, Rubio depicted the GOP as the party who would best advocate for a free-enterprise economy, generate economic growth and ultimately lift the middle class.
“Presidents in both parties – from John F. Kennedy to Ronald Reagan – have known that our free enterprise economy is the source of our middle class prosperity,” Rubio said in his response, at times delivered cautiously and interrupted once for a drink of water. “But President Obama? He believes it’s the cause of our problems.”
While Obama touted his view of a “smarter government” to work on behalf of the middle class, Rubio repeatedly drove the message that the president wanted to expand the presence of the federal government in people’s lives — much to the nation’s detriment, the senator argued.
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From the Associated Press
WASHINGTON - Florida Sen. Marco Rubio's Republican response to President Barack Obama's State of the Union address included an impromptu water break to quench his thirst.
Rubio appeared to wipe away sweat during his rebuttal from the Speaker's conference room in the U.S. Capitol shortly after Obama's address. At one point, Rubio reached out with his left hand and took a quick swig of water from a small Poland Spring water bottle.
The brief sip of water lit up social media outlets such as Twitter, with people commenting on Rubio's thirst.
Garrett Jackson, Mitt Romney's personal aide during his 2012 presidential bid, tweeted that he "would have had that water bottle closer, had it been the Gov. Haha. Marco needs an aide."
Rubio tweeted a photo of the water bottle.

From McClatchy Newspapers DC Bureau
WASHINGTON - In English and Spanish, Republican Sen. Marco Rubio on Tuesday night delivered a scathing rebuke of President Barack Obama’s State of the Union speech, signaling a Republican battle for middle-class voters that could help re-energize his party and also propel a potential 2016 White House run.
The Florida senator delivered his party’s official rebuttal to Obama’s speech, but he wasn’t the only Republican responding Tuesday night. Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky, another potential Republican presidential contender, responded to Obama’s talk on behalf of the tea party.
Read more here

The Washington Post
Republicans chose Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), a fresh new face of the party, to respond to President Obama’s State of the Union address on Tuesday.
But if the messenger was new, the message Rubio offered was back-to-basics, a re-commitment of the party to traditional conservative notions of economic growth.
He argued low taxes, limited regulations and smaller government would free the economy from the shackles of big government he contended Obama offered in his own address.
But the Florida senator offered a new laser focus on how such ideas could boost the middle class and improve the lives of individual people, part of a new Republican effort to more clearly connect their visions with the everyday problems of ordinary Americans.

New York Times Editorial Page Editor Andrew Rosenthal
In his speech, Mr. Rubio followed the Republican rebranding strategy by rephrasing the party’s grand old policies without offering any new ideas. He did a pretty good job sounding like he learned the lessons of 2012.
Mr. Rubio declared that he was particularly concerned about seniors who depend on Medicare, like his mother, and that “anyone who is in favor of leaving Medicare exactly the way it is right now, is in favor of bankrupting it.”
Funny Mr. Rubio should say that, because on Tuesday night, Mr. Obama argued that we can’t leave Medicare as is: “Those of us who care deeply about programs like Medicare must embrace the need for modest reforms.”

New York Time Political Reporter Jeff Zeleny
The Republican response by Senator Marco Rubio of Florida is now competing with chatter about his awkward sip of water during the middle of his speech, but his pointed message about which party treats the middle class better could be the ultimate takeaway.
“The idea that more taxes and more government spending is the best way to help hardworking middle class taxpayers – that’s an old idea that’s failed every time it’s been tried,” said Mr. Rubio, who made at least 16 references to the middle class during his remarks.
Mr. Rubio kept a sharp focus on President Obama. It was one of many signs throughout the evening that Republicans are still intently fixated on criticizing the president above anything else. He used the speech – one of his biggest steps yet on the national stage – to introduce himself and his own upbringing.

From National Public Radio
Florida Sen. Marco Rubio drew on his own humble beginnings and the continuing struggles of his West Miami neighbors — many of them immigrants like his Cuban-born parents — in the Republican response Tuesday to President Obama's State of the Union address.
In a speech delivered from the Speaker's Conference Room in the U.S. Capitol, Rubio strove mightily, and somewhat nervously, to transform the perception — cemented during last year's presidential race — that his party's embrace excludes those who aren't rich and white to one that has middle-class interests at heart.

Best of Twitter

Rubio: I don't always drink water, but when I do, it's only during my State of the Union rebuttal. Stay thirsty my friends #watergate

And if you missed the Water-gate moment, click here


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L Miller

The president spoke for one full hour and never missed a beat. Marco Rubio could not get through 15 minutes without his mouth going dry. If you are not ready for prime time, Mr.Rubio, stay off of the stage until you are ready.

As a public speaker myself, I know when someone is outsideof his element.And this is the Republican savior????? I think not.


Pleases... I did not see Obama do it prior to running for president. He probably would have wet his pants.


So while the cameras were looking at his wife, members of Congress etc. Do you actually believe he did not take a drink? The water is kept under the podium. Check the tape when he walks up and greets VP and Speaker.

James Huffer

Faced with the prospect of having to actually live the lies and knowing full well his inablity to maintain his act in the face of world wide scrutiny, the republican Godsend suffers from the effects of pure fear of being exposed as having Dick Nixon desease as one lie builds upon another until the weight of truth topples the act into darkness.


Who cares about Sen. Rubio's drinking of water. People get thirsty. If you listened to his speech, it was fresh, crisp & inspired. As opposed to the President's speech which was funn of finger-pointing, bullying, blame & bitterness.

Rubio/Rand 2016!



The water bottle thing is so petty, this shows why democrats can't govern. They don't care about being good leaders, they just want to make non-stories to cover for their leader who is bankrupting the country. Rubio called it the way it is. Bravo.

elaiane manzo

rubio was terrific-he showed obama for what he is. if all you can find wrong with his speech was his drink of water, you know how great he is


The problem wasn't the water, but the message. Rubio inserted what he wanted to believe in responding to Obama's speech instead of listening and offering a succinct rebuttal. What we saw is what the GOP has been providing all along, "we don't believe in government to solve problems". Sorry, but government DOES allow us to solve SOME problems private enterprise cannot. The other refrain is "Obama won't help middle class taxpayers, we will". Actually, the biggest hindrance to the middle class doing better are the excesses by the upper class which the GOP keeps supporting.

We still have a GOP talking past instead of working with the Democrats to SOLVE problems. Rubio, like Lindsey Graham, John McCain and Mitch McConnell seem far, far more interested in telling us why ONLY their approach will work, and ignoring the need to WORK TOGETHER to SOLVE any of the serious problems we face. Instead of finding common ground, they believe they need to try and take the high ground as they play king of the mountain. Well, sorry but that just isn't going to cut it in today's political world.

Michael Loyd Gray

Rubio has now had his Bobby Jindal moment!

And all he offered were the tired old faulty GOP ideas that work only for the rich.



Rubio's English-language speech was very good, and showed him as a smart, thoughtful, attractive conservative. His Spanish-language speech was masterful. I hope the Hispanic voters who drank the Democrats' Kool-Aid in 2012 were watching, and start to pay attention to which party actually wants to help them achieve the American dream. Viva Marco!

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