Certainly Rubio has his detractors, with criticism often being rooted in his being part of the "Gang of 8," or that he is merely the GOP equivalent of Barack Obama, etc. Of course the most prolific charge levied against him is he is a "robot" and that he is incapable of diverting from specific talking points or is unable to be speak "off the cuff."
My friend and fellow political junkie Ann Neu had the perfect retort for those who believe Rubio merely spouts talking points.
I've heard a lot of criticism of Rubio repeating himself. It's called message discipline, and it prevents 47% and binders of women comments.— Anne Neu (@anneneu) February 14, 2016
The "47%" and "binders full of women" comments were put forth by 2012 GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney. While it's difficult to say if those missteps were the the catalyst for Romney's failed presidential run, those statements certainly dogged him throughout the rest of his campaign.
In short, "message discipline" is not a bad thing. In fact we're coming to find out it can be vital. Just ask current Republican presidential candidate John Kasich.
John Kasich: Women voters "left their kitchens" to campaign for me https://t.co/3WUi0yr4ie via @WSJPolitics pic.twitter.com/ypdxyXNK9s— Wall Street Journal (@WSJ) February 22, 2016
To be clear, I don't think Kasich is some sort of misogynist for making such a statement. But the fact of the matter is Kasich had to answer for that statement thus resulting in his campaign releasing a response.
"John Kasich’s campaigns have always been homegrown affairs. They’ve literally been run out of his friends’ kitchens and many of his early campaign teams were made up of stay-at-home moms who believed deeply in the changes he wanted to bring to them and their families," Rob Nichols, a spokesman for the campaign, said in the statement. "That’s real grassroots campaigning and he’s proud of that authentic support. To try and twist his comments into anything else is just desperate politics."
As the saying goes: "If you're explaining, you're losing."