MIAMI-- For the first time since Marco Rubio was elected in November, the junior U.S. Senator from Florida has been receiving national political buzz, and it seems to be spreading.
First, the so called king of talk radio, Rush Limbaugh, declared this week, that he wanted Rubio to run for president, after his conservative push in the Senate to battle continuing resolutions as short-term answers to the budget battle.
" Marco Rubio says what is this continuing resolution crap? " Limbaugh said on his show. " I wish the guy would run for president."
In Dr. Larry Sabato's newly-released, and respected analysis of 2012 presidential prospects, the University of Virginia political science professor included Rubio into his report, placing the 39 year old in his second tier of possible GOP candidates, and in the same category as Newt Gingrich.
"Rubio is new to the national scene, but had a career as speaker of the state House of Representatives - no minor position. And after Barack Obama's meteoric rise, Democrats would be in no position to question Rubio's experience, "Sabato writes. "Obama has blazed the trail for very junior senators, so this is not as unthinkable as it once might have been."
However, Sabato, like other analysts of the GOP, see more potential for Rubio as a 2012 VP short-lister.
"[Rubio] is more likely to end up on the 2012 GOP ticket as vice president. It will be a shock if he is not on the eventual nominee's shortlist. He's got it all: high office from one of the premier swing mega-states, good looks and rhetorical flourish, and ethnic membership in arguably the most significant political group of the 21st century, Hispanics," Sabato adds.
But a Rubio adviser says that the Senator is not buying into the "hype".
"He bristles at that stuff. A typical politician would believe all that hype, and start angling, but Marco sees it for what it is- hype. If he doesn't do his job as a senator, he's not gonna get re-elected," The Rubio insider said to FOX News. "I have never seen anyone less fazed. It has zero impact."