Today contained some good news for Marco Rubio and Rand Paul, both Republican Senate candidates in primary contests against opponents that are viewed as the “establishment” choice.

Marco Rubio is running against the current Republican governor of Florida, Charlie Crist. Rubio has been surging in the polls for several months, and now the latest Rasmussen poll shows Rubio with a solid lead among likely Republican primary voters:

A new Rasmussen Reports telephone survey of likely GOP Primary voters in the state finds Rubio leading Crist 49% to 37%. Three percent (3%) prefer another candidate, and 11% are undecided.

The new numbers mark a stunning turnaround. Crist was the strong favorite when he first announced for the Senate seat, and Rubio was viewed as a long-shot challenger.

But Crist’s support fell from 53% in August to 49% in October. By December, the two men were tied at 43% apiece.

Given Rubio’s strong poll numbers and clear upward trajectory, it is hard to imagine how Crist could turn around the race barring some major news or shake up.

Also today, Rand Paul, who is running for Senate seat in Kentucky being vacated by Republican Jim Bunning, just received the high profile endorsement of Sarah Palin. Rand Paul is the son of former GOP presidential candidate and current US Representative Ron Paul (TX-14). He is up against Trey Grayson, who is seen as the favorite of the party establishment, in the Republican primary. It will be interesting to see what affect Sarah Palin’s endorsement will have on Paul’s standing with Republican primary voters.

Jon Walker

Jon Walker

Jonathan Walker grew up in New Jersey. He graduated from Wesleyan University in 2006. He is an expert on politics, health care and drug policy. He is also the author of After Legalization and Cobalt Slave, and a Futurist writer at