Backing immigration reform is killing Marco Rubio in the polls, according to Public Policy Polling:
... Marco Rubio, who had led all of our polling since December, has dropped all the way to 6th place. Rand Paul now has the lead nationally, to go along with the leads he posted in our most recent Iowa and New Hampshire polls. And Ted Cruz has already hit double digits....(Rand Paul is leading the poll, but, as Ed Kilgore notes, that's despite the fact that he's actually down 1 point since April.)
Rubio was at 21 or 22% on all of our polls between January and March but his support has now dropped to half that level....
Rubio, of course, wants to regain this lost ground by becoming the lead sponsor of a Senate bill banning abortions nationwide after 20 weeks.
But that's not going to save him in 2016. By backing immigration reform (and -- perhaps even more unforgivable -- working with Democrats to get a bill), he put himself way, way to the left of his party's base, and way, way to the left of his likely 2016 rivals. By contrast, a 20-week abortion ban doesn't really put him to the right of his likely rivals at all.
Ted Cruz backs the extreme Texas anti-abortion law that was recently passed and said that Wendy Davis's filibuster of that bill was meant to “protect the ability to take yet more lives.” As a lawyer, he authored amicus briefs on the anti-abortion side in two Supreme Court abortion cases.
Jeb Bush, as governor of Florida, reacted to the pregnancy of a 13-year-old girl in state custody by asking that a guardian be appointed for the fetus, an effort to prevent an abortion that he later abandoned after courts sided with the girl. He also signed a law tightening regulations on abortion clinics.
Rand Paul introduced a fetal personhood bill earlier this year.
Paul Ryan has said, "We don't want a country where abortion is simply outlawed. We want a country where it isn't even considered."
Hard to get to the right of those guys.
Maybe the bill will help get Rubio past Chris Christie, who, though anti-abortion and a serial defunder of Planned Parenthood, was pro-choice and a Planned Parenthood donor in the 1990s.
But that's about it. Rubio's going to have to find another on which he can go far to the right of the pack.