Marco Rubio stands by calling Trump a 'con artist,' still supports him

Rubio apologized to Trump for 'small hands' taunt
Rubio apologized to Trump for 'small hands' taunt

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Rubio apologized to Trump for 'small hands' taunt 02:20

Story highlights

  • Marco Rubio says he'll support Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump
  • But he says he stands by "everything" he said during his primary campaign

(CNN)Florida Sen. Marco Rubio is standing by his description of Donald Trump as "a con artist," but he says in a new interview he still plans to support the real estate mogul for president.

"I've stood by everything I ever said in my campaign," Rubio told the Miami Herald editorial board Monday when asked about his comments made during the Republican presidential primary earlier this year.
    He said the race is "in a different place now" -- with voters facing a "binary choice" between Trump and Hillary Clinton.
    "In our republic, while the presidency is powerful, there is a balance of power in this country, and a significant amount of it resides in the United States Senate," Rubio said. "It's one of the reasons why I seek to run again."
    Rubio previously told CNN earlier this year that he apologized to Trump for one of his comments: About the size of Trump's hands.
    "I apologized to him for that," Rubio told CNN's Jake Tapper on "State of the Union." "I said, 'You know, I'm sorry that I said that. It's not who I am and I shouldn't have done it.'"
    ABC reported Tuesday that Rubio -- who has not appeared on the campaign trail with Trump -- will stump with Trump's running mate Mike Pence in Florida. CNN has reached out to the Rubio campaign for comment.
    Iowa Rep. Steve King, a Republican, told CNN's Carol Costello that Rubio's comments are "a political statement."
    "I would think that he should find a way to mitigate that statement about Donald Trump," King said on "Newsroom." "It's a political statement, I would presume"
    He added that the focus should be on putting the country "back on the rails again."