By Alexander Bolton - 08/28/12 02:48 PM EDT
TARPON SPRINGS, Fla. — Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) on Tuesday morning criticized Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) and other Democrats for employing “vicious” tactics against Mitt Romney.
Rubio, who at one time was thought to be on a shortlist of potential Romney running mates and is scheduled to speak at the convention Thursday night, singled out Reid’s claim that Romney had not paid taxes for a span of 10 years.
“You have the majority leader of the United States Senate saying that he has a secret source who told him that Mitt Romney hadn’t paid taxes. This is crazy. This is absolutely insane, and yet we’re having these kinds of things happening on a consistent basis now. There are no rules now,” Rubio told members of the South Carolina delegation during a breakfast at the well-manicured Innisbrook Golf Resort.
Republican senators are still fuming over Reid’s claim that a Bain Capital investor told him Romney had not paid taxes for a decade.
“This is a president who has abandoned the historical [sic] opportunity that he had to elevate America’s politics,” he said.
“Instead of debating or trying to convince people the last four years has made America better, this is an all-out assault to try to convince people that Mitt Romney is someone you can’t possibly vote for because he’s not a good person. This is what this president has become — he’s become just like any other politician in Washington.”
Rubio took aim at a Democratic ad featuring a widower who blames his wife’s death on losing his job and health insurance because of Bain Capital, a private equity firm Romney headed.
“They’re saying things that are absolutely vicious,” he said. “Accusing Mitt Romney of being responsible for the death of a poor woman who lost her health insurance. Comparing him to a vampire in an earlier ad, a felon, a tax cheat. These are ridiculous allegations.”