The Post reports on the sluggish start to Rubio’s campaign:
So Rubio has embarked on a strategy to compete in each of the four early states of Iowa, New Hampshire, South Carolina and Nevada. The hope is to strike it big in at least one by cobbling together a diverse coalition of Republican voters. It is perhaps the best option for a contender who, unlike Bush and Walker, has neither an obvious path to the nomination nor a clearly defined base of support [bold mine-DL].
Rubio’s predicament as a presidential candidate has always been that there is no rationale for his candidacy, and so it’s understandable that there aren’t many voters that are strongly drawn to his campaign. As the report says, and as I’ve noted before, his policy views are difficult to distinguish from his main competitors, and he ended up waffling on the one major issue he did try to address while in the Senate. This has left him running primarily on his biography and his supposed foreign policy expertise, which is not nearly as great as he would have voters believe. The hurdle Rubio will have great difficulty getting over is that he has accomplished nothing as a senator, and the one thing he tried to do he has since repudiated.
He has the advantage that he is not strongly disliked by many Republicans, but almost all of them prefer someone else ahead of him to be president. Maybe in a much less-crowded field, or just one without Jeb Bush in it, Rubio would be able to build more of a following, but that doesn’t seem to be happening. It’s still possible that he could improve on his middling position in the polls, but I suspect it is much more likely that Rubio is the sort of presidential candidate whose chances have been exaggerated by pundits and journalists from the start.