Marco Rubio Uses Jeb Bush's Own Words As An Endorsement In New Campaign Ad — VIDEO

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The two might have been friends once, but it looks like the relationship is on rocky terrain — especially now that Marco Rubio's new ad uses Jeb Bush's own words to showcase how good a president Rubio would be. Titled, "Before the Phony Attacks," the ad is basically just one big attempt to troll Bush.

The ad, which was released on Tuesday, came as a preemptive strike before the fourth GOP debate. Despite Bush and Rubio's long and well-documented friendship, Bush came out swinging in the third debate, and had his eyes locked on Rubio. But when he attempted to call his one-time protege out on his poor attendance record in the Senate, Rubio quickly and effectively dismissed the criticism.

Apparently unwilling to wait for a second attack, Rubio's super PAC released the ad, which is comprised of various clips of Bush heaping praise onto Rubio. In several clips, Bush applauds Rubio's "hopeful, optimistic message," while repeatedly saying how big a fan he is of Rubio.

But the real kicker comes when Bush actually endorses a Rubio presidency: "He's probably the most articulate conservative on the scene today, and has the fortitude to be a good president."

Marco Rubio on YouTube

As it turns out, the preemptive strike may not have been needed — or perhaps served as an effective warning shot ahead of the GOP debate. Unlike last time, Bush didn't attempt to engage Rubio in any verbal sparring, choosing to wade into a few arguments with Trump instead. In fact, the two men barely addressed each other at all during the night.

While Bush's campaign is failing, Rubio is quickly gaining traction. The newest polls have him sitting in third place nationally, and his repeatedly strong debate performances have helped him rise above the rest of the pack. But attempts to attack Rubio don't appear to be helping Bush's campaign any.

In a comment to The New York Times, a Bush super PAC's strategist indicated his willingness to spend $20 million on attack ads in order to tarnish the young senator's reputation — which is what makes Rubio's new ad so potent. Any attempt to discredit Rubio now will appear as hypocritical or contradictory on Bush's part. And after a long history of heaping praise on Rubio, there's almost no way that this tactic can work for Bush.

At this point, Bush's best move might be to drop out. With Rubio on the scene, he's unlikely to regain his initial traction — and Rubio clearly isn't going anywhere.