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Rubio: GOP must rebrand as party of 'multiethnic, multiracial, working-class' voters

Rubio: GOP must rebrand as party of 'multiethnic, multiracial, working-class' voters
© Greg Nash

Sen. Marco RubioMarco Antonio RubioHillicon Valley: Senate Intelligence Committee leaders warn of Chinese threats to national security | Biden says China must play by 'international norms' | House Democrats use Markup app for leadership contest voting Trump campaigns as wild card in Georgia runoffs Rubio and Ocasio-Cortez spar on Twitter: 'Work more, tweet less' MORE (R-Fla.) said in an interview released Wednesday that the Republican Party must change by connecting more with working-class voters as well as people of color. 

“The future of the party is based on a multiethnic, multiracial, working-class coalition,” Rubio said in an interview with Alayna Treene of Axios.

Rubio, who was defeated by President TrumpDonald John TrumpAppeals court OKs White House diverting military funding to border wall construction Pentagon: Tentative meeting between spy agencies, Biden transition set for early next week Conservative policy director calls Section 230 repeal an 'existential threat' for tech MORE in the 2016 GOP presidential primary, has positioned himself to be at the center of the debate over how the party evolves going forward. 

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He has signaled he sees the GOP's future as tied to the values of working-class voters, who have turned out in force for Trump. He has also signaled the GOP must appeal to a racially diverse electorate.

Trump made surprising gains among Latino voters this year, though Joe BidenJoe BidenAppeals court OKs White House diverting military funding to border wall construction Federal student loan payment suspension extended another month Pentagon: Tentative meeting between spy agencies, Biden transition set for early next week MORE won the majority of Latino votes nationally at 66 percent.

Trump also appeared to do better with Black voters, and particularly with Black men, based on exit polling.

The GOP has long been a party tied to big business, and the Trump tax-cut bill that Rubio supported was centered on a reduction in the corporate tax rate.

But Rubio in the interview took a swipe at big businesses, saying they “only care about how their shares are performing, even if it's based on moving production overseas for cheaper labor."

Large corporations saw their stock values soar after the Trump tax-cut bill. 

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Rubio warned that Republicans would be wise to stick to Trump's more protectionist line on trade, which has created friction with corporations.

“If the takeaway from all of them is now is the time to go back to sort of the traditional party of unfettered free trade, I think we're gonna lose the [Trump] base as quickly as we got it. ... We can't just go back to being that,” he said.

Rubio made a similar call for a more diverse "multiethnic, multiracial, working-class" party on Fox News when speaking with host Sean Hannity.

“What I mean by ‘working-class party’ is normal, everyday people who don't want to live in a city where there is no police department, where people rampage through the streets every time they are upset about something,” said Rubio.