The Miami Republican was running late to his first Senate press conference -- to endorse fellow Republican Sen. Pat Toomey's 2012 budget proposal -- and Toomey's hometown press suggests the Florida Republican "did his best to steal the show."
(Here's the video of Rubio, who didn't exactly push his way into the spotlight -- he was the last senator to speak -- and started his remarks by thanking Toomey "for taking leadership on this issue.")
The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette notes: "the telegenic freshman who is seen as an attractive future presidential candidate.... spoke of his 80-year-old Medicare recipient mother and how the (Wisconsin Rep. Paul) Ryan plan to turn Medicare into a 'premium support' model is a way to save it for future generations.
The Medicare remarks came after a reporter asked Rubio what he was hearing from his constituents back home in Miami about Ryan's Medicare plan -- which Democrats, and some GOP Town Hall attendees -- have assailed.
"They want us to save Medicare," Rubio said. "And I think people are increasingly understanding that Medicare as its currently structured goes bankrupt and within the next five to 12 years that there won't be a Medicare.
"I want Medicare to exist in a way that's unchanged for people that are in Medicare now. I want Medicare to exist when I retire. I want Medicare to exist when my children retire," he said
He suggested that "those who are in favor of doing nothing with Medicare are in favor of allowing it to go bankrupt" and that "the only people in this city that have ever proposed cutting Medicare are the people that voted for Obamacare" -- a statement that Politifact today debunked as "barely true."
He said he'd vote for the Ryan plan despite the controversy or a similar proposal: "The political risks are dwarfed by the real risks of allowing Medicare to go bankrupt. The political risks do not measure up to the real risk of allowing Medicare with a five -- over the next five to 12 years to have to cut benefits because it starts running out of money.