“You know, many people say Nicki Minaj is a rapper, but she's also a singer,” says Rubio of the “Starships” songstress.

But the junior senator’s not done there. “Kanye's another guy who's also a rapper, but his songs aren't pure rap anymore. There's also all these collaborations going on, which confuses everything,” explains (soon-to-be music professor?) Rubio.

The center of the summer’s GOP veepstakes buzz is critical of a Miami-born chart topper, saying of the “Don’t Stop the Party” rapper Pitbull: “His songs are all party songs. There's no message for him, compared to like an Eminem. But look, there's always been a role for that in American music.”

Rubio adds about the 31-year-old smooth-flowing entertainer, “There's always been a party person, but he's a young guy. You know, maybe as he gets older, he'll reflect in his music more as time goes on. I mean, he's not Tupac. He's not gonna be writing poetry.”

When asked by the mag if he plays any songs to psych himself up before a Senate vote, Rubio replies, “I’m not like an athlete,” and says he doesn’t “have time for that.” He adds with a laugh, “You know you can’t put on earphones and [then] storm the floor and vote.”

The lawmaker also espouses his thoughts on another rap superstar: “The only guy that speaks at any sort of depth is, in my mind, Eminem. He's a guy that does music that talks about the struggles of addiction and before that violence, with growing up in a broken family, not being a good enough father. So, you know that's what I enjoy about it.”

Rubio reveals his top three rap picks include the late 1980s N.W.A. hit “Straight Outta Compton,” “Killuminati” by Tupac Shakur and Eminem’s “Lose Yourself.”

But Rubio laments it’s tougher for him to lose himself in the often expletive-filled music these days: “It's harder to listen to than ever before because I have a bunch of kids and you just can't put it on.”