Marco Rubio - photo by Getty Images
WASHINGTON - Marco Rubio is taking center stage as Republicans search for a new leader.
Since President Barack Obama won a second term, the Florida senator has made several steps to emerge as a next-generation leader for Republicans and potentially position himself for a future presidential run.
The bilingual Cuban-American lawmaker has become Republicans' point person on immigration reform and pitches economic solutions at middle-class workers. He says the party needs to welcome more Hispanics and minorities and stay true to their principles.
Rubio will give the Republican response to Obama's State of the Union address Tuesday.
Rubio's advisers say the rebuttal will offer economic prescriptions for a sluggish economy and counter what they call Obama's government-centered economic approach.
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Ken Thomas, Associated Press