If you’ve paid attention to the “evangelical insiders” poll from the well respected World magazine, you’d see that Marco Rubio does very well with evangelicals. It’s true. Rubio is constantly talked about in gatherings of Christians. They like the guy. I know a number of people who have shifted from other candidates to Rubio within the evangelical community.
Rubio also intends to pursue evangelicals aggressive and it shows. He just hired Eric Teetsel. Eric, for those of you who do not know him, was the Executive Director of the Manhattan Declaration, a “call of Christian conscience” on life, marriage and religious liberty signed by more than 550,000 believers that was founded by the late Chuck Colson, Robby George, and other faith leaders in 2009. Before the Manhattan Declaration, Eric worked at the American Enterprise Institute, where he helped build and launch the Values & Capitalism project.
Where other candidates are hiring folks from the dying “Moral Majority” coalitions of the past, Eric Teetsel is plugged into those power centers, but has transcended them. He’s of a more youthful generation of Christian evangelicals who respects past contributions, but is also focused on the future and not nursing past grievances.
This is a really sharp hire. Through his work with the Manhattan Declaration, Eric is plugged in to some of the most prominent evangelical leaders and pastors in the United States. He is trusted by evangelicals because of his strong stance on marriage and by those outside the evangelical community because of his willingness to debate in good faith on issues.
The other candidates need to take notice of this. In an area where there are a lot of charlatans, Rubio has hit a home run on a hire to woo evangelicals.
Disclosure: I’m part of the “evangelical insiders” survey by World.