Consider the following points of fact (whether anecdotal or otherwise):
Donald Trump has arguably the strongest base of supporters of any candidate (perhaps save Sen. Sanders) this primary season.
Mr. Trump has maintained such steadfast support because he is not beholden to anyone (self-funded) and he speaks his mind quite frankly.
Mr. Trump has never campaigned as a conservative but instead as a Jacksonian American.
On the flip side, Mr. Trump now has the highest negatives of any candidate (only Gov. Bush was higher, but he’s now out). He is also nobody’s “second choice” candidate.
Mr. Trump does have a ceiling of support; nobody knows what that is yet, though some might speculate it’s roughly a third of the Republican primary voters.
So how do I get from all the above to suggesting that Mr. Trump could be looking at Sen. Rubio as his running mate?
First, Mr. Trump must garner at least two-thirds of the GOP primary voter blocs in order to both securely win the nomination (yes, I realize he technically only needs half plus one of the delegates to be nominated) and to have a chance in the General Election.
Secondly, if you’ve watched every GOP debate to date, you will have noticed that Mr. Trump has always attacked Govs. Kasich, Bush and Christie and Sen. Cruz. He has never attacked Dr. Carson or Sen. Rubio. Ever.
Thirdly, Sen. Rubio (at this point, barring some unforeseen circumstance) remains the final hold-out for the non-Trump supporters, a key voting bloc that Mr. Trump will have to woo by the time the General Election campaign gets into full swing (I see Sen. Cruz’ recent communication issues being nearly insurmountable for him — I of course could be wrong).
Regarding Mr. Trump’s negatives. By his own admission during certain rallies, he admits that this is because of his personality. Yet, he has also been quoted as someone who can change presentationally as he needs to in order to close the deal. And since his personality is the main reason for the negatives, assuming that he continues on his present trajectory, he will pivot his personality by the nomination in order to ramp up for the General Election.
As a disclosure, I will not be voting for Mr. Trump during the primary process. However, if he becomes the eventual nominee for the GOP, I would have zero problems voting for him if the only alternative is a Neo-Communist or Socialist on the Democrat side. As for any third-party nominee, a vote in that direction typically guarantees that my least-favorite candidate will win.
Many talking heads believe that Mr. Trump has changed policy or personal positions based on political whim. While they could be right, remember, fellow citizen, that any candidate could choose to change their mind on any issue in the future, depending on the facts as presented to them. In other words, we can’t read peoples’ minds; unless Mr. Trump admits it, then we have to take his word (as we would with any other candidate) for why he’s changed the way he has. Frankly, even Sen. Cruz’ or Rubio’s past senatorial votes don’t ultimately mean anything as President.
I don’t know any more than another casual observer if this theoretical ticket would be anything more than that. I do know that once the parties have chosen their nominees, the political calculus changes drastically for the General Election.
You will have the opportunity to ask the question (especially in the case that Mr. Trump becomes the GOP nominee):
Does Mr. Trump present a greater challenge against the United States than does Pres. Obama? Is it better to risk voting for Mr. Trump than for a Neo-Communist or Socialist?
Remember: any President has five hundred and thirty five other individuals to work through in order to get anything done. By definition, that means that, statistically, even with a smooth four-year term, only fifty percent of what a candidate promises will actually occur, and the statistics fall further because of compromise on proposed legislation.
That’s how the system was supposed to work!