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Describing "Nation in Decline," Rubio Urges N.H. Voters to Choose New Direction

Natasha Haverty

Just hours after stepping off stage from Thursday night’s Republican debate, Florida Senator and presidential hopeful Marco Rubio was back in New Hampshire Friday. 

At a stop at New England College in Henniker, he repeated a line he uses a lot on the campaign trail: 

"This is hard for me say this but it’s the truth and you need to hear it. Your country is a nation in decline. It is headed in the wrong direction, and it’s headed in the wrong direction fast."

This idea is a key theme of Rubio’s stump speech: America is in big trouble. And it’s an idea that’s working for him so far in New Hampshire; Rubio is second only to Trump in most recent state polls.

But that picture of an America in decline doesn’t quite resonate with some of the people packed into this room at New England College Friday who are still making up their mind. Bill and Janine Berger registered independents from New London managed to snag seats in the front row—I caught them in the parking lot.

"I guess we don’t see the dark, dark side that some of them are trying to portray," Jeanine says.

"All of them, the Republican candidates, will not recognize any of the positive elements of the present administration; I guess that’s just part of the game," Bill adds.

Standing in the back of the room, Chavin Drayton a student here, is still making up his mind on who to vote for. But he says he doesn’t quite buy Rubio’s argument that everything went down hill with President Obama.

"It would probably have more of an effect on someone to someone who doesn’t pay attention? But if you know and you’re paying attention, you know it’s just not that easy," says Drayton.

But plenty of people here today nodded right along with Rubio’s speech. And before the senator was off to his next stop in Claremont, a long line of people waited to shake his hand.

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