marco Rubio susana martinez
Current Republican presidential candidate and Florida Senator Marco Rubio (L) and Republican New Mexico Gov. Susana Martinez addressing Republican National Convention a August 30 and August 29, respectively, 2012 in Tampa, Florida. Mark Wilson/Getty Images; REUTERS/Adrees Latif (photos have been edited)

New Mexico Governor Susana Martinez has endorsed Florida Senator Marco Rubio in for president, saying that the stakes in the race for the GOP nomination are “too great for me to remain neutral,” according to a statement received by the Albuquerque Journal. Martinez will reportedly stump for Rubio on the campaign trail in his home state of Florida, where he hopes to make a final stand against Republican frontrunner Donald Trump. Rubio is behind Trump in most polls, but has promised to beat him in the delegate-rich, winner-take-all Republican primary there.

Marco Rubio, who is Cuban-American, has argued all along that he is the best choice to help the GOP win the Latino vote in a general election. The proportion of Hispanic voters in early primary states is so small that it’s hard to say whether or not Rubio has been a significant force so far. Martinez, the nation’s first Latina governor, is Mexican-American. She was widely seen as a potential vice presidential running mate until she was recorded drunkenly bullying local police offices at a staff holiday party.

“Marco Rubio is a compelling leader who can unite the country around conservative principles that will improve the lives of all Americans,” Martinez told Politico, who first reported Martinez’s endorsement. “The stakes for our great country are too high — and the differences between the candidates too great — for me to remain neutral in this race. I wholeheartedly trust Marco to keep us safe and ensure a better tomorrow.”

Martinez says that she has a long-standing relationship with Rubio.

“I have known Marco for several years, and he has gone out of his way to reach out to me to discuss how important issues impact New Mexico long before he ever entered the race for president,” Martinez said in a statement to the Journal.

Martinez’s endorsement is likely to help Rubio among New Mexico Republican primary voters. However, the New Mexico primary is worth only a few delegates. The primary is also held in June, just weeks ahead of the GOP national convention. Rubio’s make or break moments are likely to come well before then.

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