White House spoksman Jay Carney said Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida, who delivered the Republican response to President Obama's State of the Union address Tuesday night, sounded familar.
"While the messenger may have changed, the message we heard last night from the Republican speaker was entirely consistent with the policy ideas that Mitt Romney campaigned on last year that the American people did not support," Carney said. "This was not a focus of his address last night, but I know -- and the president is aware of the fact that Senator Rubio wants to play and is playing an important role in an effort to achieve bipartisan, comprehensive immigration reform. But aside from that, if you look at the remarks by Senator Rubio last night, they could have been delivered by Governor Romney in their policy essence."
Meanwhile, you will not be surprised to know that Carney said White House officials "believe the speech went off very well and has been received very well."
Obama outlined a second-term agenda Tuesday night with proposals designed to create jobs, expand the middle class and spur financial growth.
"I think what the president was saying last night is we need to move forward on an agenda that builds the middle class; that produces not a bigger government but a smarter government; and that grows the economy while reducing our deficit in a way that's fair, that doesn't ask senior citizens or middle-class families sending their kids to college, or parents with disabled children to bear the burden solely of reducing our deficit," Carney saud. "That's an approach that doesn't just have the president's support or the Democratic Party's support, or even support of independents, which it does. It has support among Republicans out in the real world, and it has support of numerous Republican former elected officials who have led or served on bipartisan commissions who have looked at deficit reduction."