Marco Rubio’s stock rose higher Wednesday as he secured a spot on TIME’s 100 Most Influential People In the World list, the only potential vice presidential picked by the magazine’s editors.
Nestled between singer Rihanna and cartoonist Ali Ferzat on the list, Rubio is considered a rising star within the Republican Party based on a mix of his Tea Party bona fides, Cuban ancestry, and leadership and quick ascension on the political ladder.
“I knew there was something special about Marco Rubio when I first met him as a young Republican city commissioner. Bilingual and bicultural, he represents the best of the emerging second generation of Cuban immigrants. His ascendancy in politics has not surprised me or the people who know him. Rubio’s abiding faith in the promise of America is so compelling,” former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush wrote of the young senator in TIME Magazine.”Today Senator Rubio, 40, is an eloquent voice for limited government, entrepreneurial capitalism and a robust foreign policy. Watching him operate in D.C. is refreshing as he continually seeks common ground with Democrats on issues like job growth and immigration without violating principle. Rubio is the real deal, and I for one look forward to watching him contribute to the rebuilding of our great country in the years to come.”
Rubio joins a handful of politicians on this year’s list, including President Obama, presumptive Republican nominee (and potential running mate for Rubio) Mitt Romney, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, and Ron Paul.
Rubio, who many speculate is in the top tier of potential vice presidential candidates, has waved off questions about being on the Republican ticket this fall, most recently saying in an interview with CNN en Español Friday, “I’m not going to be the vice president…I’m not.”
The most influential list, which was released Wednesday, includes people that the magazine says “inspire us, entertain us, challenge us and change our world.”
A spokesman for Rubio did not immediately respond to a request for comment on Rubio’s placement on the list.