Republican Senator Marco Rubio of Florida is favored as a Vice Presidential candidate to run with Governor Mitt Romney, the presumptive GOP nominee for president. According to a poll by the IBOPE Inteligência agency, this is true among Republicans and non-Republicans. The IBOPE poll found that 22% of overall voters prefer that Romney should choose Rubio as his running mate, while 36% of Republican voters echo the sentiment.

When asked about the qualities Romney should look for in a running mate, a plurality of those polled selected a profile that may not fit the Miami-born Rubio. According to IBOPE,  44% of voters would want Romney to choose someone "who has an established record in public office or government and will been seen as acceptable to moderate voters," while 15% want Romney to go with someone "with little or no history of public office who will generate enthusiasm among particular groups (i.e. ideological, ethnic, racial, gender.)"  Results among Republicans were similar to those of all voters, with 40% choosing a more established politician as their model.

Rubio, 41, is serving his first term in the U.S. Senate. President Barack Obama has made direct appeals to Hispanic voters, for example in his recent immigration turn-around, while Rubio's Cuban heritage is cited as a plus among Hispanic voters. 73% of those polled say Romney's choice for running mate will have no influence on their votes, while 6% say it will have a great deal of influence and 18% say it will have some.

The poll listed 12 possible running mates for Romney, including: Rubio, Bob McDonnell, Bobby Jindal, Chris Christie, John Thune, Kelly Ayotte, Mitch Daniels, Nikki Haley, Paul Ryan,  Rob Portman, Susana Martinez and Tim Pawlenty.

Among all voters, no one besides Rubio draws 10% or more, with Jindal, the Governor of Louisiana, at 8% and Rep. Ryan at 7%. Among Republicans only, 12% choose Jindal and 10% Ryan.

Another star in the Republican constellation is former Condoleeza Rice, the former Secretary of State who served in the George W. Bush administration. She, however, has expressed no interest in serving as Vice President.

A total of 42% overall were either not sure (28%) or want "someone else" (14%). Among Republicans, 17% are not sure and 6% want "someone else." In the online poll, 2,071 likely voters were questioned. It was conducted in March of this year.



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Spero News writer Martin Barillas is a former US diplomat, who also worked as a democracy advocate and election observer in Latin America. His first novel 'Shaken Earth', is available at Amazon.

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