Two prominent new voices in the Republican Party Florida Senator Marco Rubio and Wisconsin Rep. Paul Ryan laid out visions and ideas for changing the economic message of the GOP in speeches on Tuesday. Conservatives are seeking new branding following the disappointing results of the presidential election last month.
Both speeches revealed that Rubio and Ryan are moving quickly to rebrand themselves and the party during a time where there is much introspection and debate over how and where to direct the Republican Party in a different direction. Rubio is seen as the rising star in the GOP, a freshman senator, while Ryan is the most recent vice-presidential nominee for the party.
Both men, seen as possible presidential hopefuls for 2016, used an awards dinner that the Jack Kemp Foundation hosted to express their opinions on the government’s role in helping to assist the poor and give strength to the middle class.
It was Ryan’s first speech since he and Mitt Romney lost the presidential election in November. Some of his remarks seemed to be subtle jabs aimed at Romney and the remarks he had made about 47% of the people living in the U.S.. Rubio said some people believe too many Americans want handouts from the government but he is sure that the vast majority just want the same thing his parents wanted: a chance.
Ryan said that the late Congressman Kemp, a onetime mentor of Ryan’s, a nominee for the vice presidency in the Republican Party and a congressman hated that anyone in America would written off.
Party conservatives have been critical of how Romney’s campaign focused too much on business and did not make enough of a case about his ideas of helping the working class and poor.