Rubio's inflection point
Tim Huelskamp, a House Freedom Caucus member and Ted Cruz endorser, made a fascinating comment yesterday regarding Marco Rubio's Washington, D.C. transformation.
It is well-known that Senate conservatives (a lonely bunch, sadly) have regularly met with conservative House members to plot legislative strategy, a practice started under former South Carolina senator Jim DeMint. Often the strategies were designed to stop fellow Republicans from caving to Democrat demands.
It was apparently common for the new Tea Party senators to join with DeMint. Accordingly, Rubio, whom DeMint backed in 2010 (much to the chagrin of many GOP senators who wanted Charlie Crist), attended the strategy sessions.
That is, until 2013.
I've worked with [Marco Rubio], but once he got engaged with pushing amnesty -- that's what he was. There's no way around that. Marco was for Amnesty. Before that... he would come and sit down with House conservatives. He's be in there with Senator DeMint and others and we'd have those meetings once a month.
But once he got on the train with the Establishment for open borders amnesty, he never showed back up at a conservative meeting.
The Gang of Eight was the moment when many conservatives ceased to consider Rubio a full-bore conservative champion. It appears that was also a line of demarcation for Rubio himself.