EXCLUSIVE — Chaffetz: ‘Laughable’ to Call Marco Rubio ‘Establishment’

Pahrump, NV

PAHRUMP, Nevada — Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-UT) told Breitbart News on Sunday it was “laughable” for members of the Republican Party to consider presidential candidate Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) an “establishment” candiate.

Speaking with Breitbart News on Sunday at a meet-and-greet for presidential candidate Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX), Chaffetz said the reason he is backing Rubio over everyone else in the crowded GOP field is because “he’s a true conservative who can win in November. And that’s what I care about as much as anything. You find the most conservative person who can win in November. And Marco Rubio is that person.”

Asked about claims that Rubio is now part of the establishment, Chaffetz retorted, “That’s pretty laughable. Because when the establishment wanted Charlie Christ, it was Marco Rubio who said ‘not so fast’ and actually was a conservative hero for taking on the establishment. And that was less than one term ago.” He continued, “so look at his scorecard and his record and he’s demonstrated core conservative values are the right way to go and does an excellent job articulating them.”

Chaffetz also appeared on stage Sunday evening as part of a long lineup of Rubio supporters, including Donnie Wahlberg of New Kids on the Block, participating in a rally for Rubio at Texas Station in Las Vegas. The congressman was also present during Saturday’s Democratic caucuses at the Henderson polling location.

Wahlberg, who announced Sunday that he is backing Rubio, said this will be his first time voting for a Republican. ‘I would rather have a Republican tell me something I don’t want to hear, than have a Democrat tell me everything I want to hear just to get my vote,” he told the crowd that had gathered.

Follow Adelle Nazarian on Twitter @AdelleNaz.