The New York Times earned itself some Twitter mockery last week when it ran a piece about Senator and 2016 candidate Marco Rubio’s (R-FL) dozen-odd parking tickets, info the Times swears it got on its own but which critics maintain it repurposed from a Democratic oppo research firm.
Tuesday morning the Gray Lady ran a second feature, this one a more expansive probe on Rubio’s finances, from his students loans to his purchase of a speedboat to his less-than-successful real estate hobby. Here, have a block quote:
Among the serious contenders for the presidency, Mr. Rubio stands out for his youth, his meteoric political rise — and for the persistent doubts about his financial management, to the point that Mitt Romney’s presidential campaign flagged the issue when vetting Mr. Rubio as a possible running mate in 2012, interviews show.
…A review of the Rubio family’s finances — including many new documents — reveals a series of decisions over the past 15 years that experts called imprudent: significant debts; a penchant to spend heavily on luxury items like the boat and the lease of a $50,000 2015 Audi Q7; a strikingly low savings rate, even when Mr. Rubio was earning large sums; and inattentive accounting that led to years of unpaid local government fees.
…But as Mr. Rubio, 44, seeks to counter questions about his stature and readiness for the presidency, his financial history creates particular complications. It has made him unusually reliant on a campaign donor, Norman Braman, a billionaire who subsidized Mr. Rubio’s job as a college instructor, hired him as lawyer and continues to employ his wife.
And it could undermine Mr. Rubio’s well-crafted political persona: The senator has long portrayed himself as a champion of financial austerity, railing against excessive government spending and runaway debt.
The Rubio camp was not happy, hitting back at the “elitist” New York Times in a statement Tuesday morning. Here, have an embed:
Rubio camp: "Elitist New York Times calls Marco’s Student Loan Debts “A Deep Financial Hole of his Own Making" pic.twitter.com/hJXx5HI97L
— Zeke Miller (@ZekeJMiller) June 9, 2015
The Times has made a mini-industry out of torturing Hillary Clinton’s campaign in the past couple months, troubling the narrative of the paper as a “Hillary press shop,” as Rubio’s campaign would have it. The Times v GOP candidate configuration is much more familiar terrain for everybody involved.
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