Rubio's 'Opportunity Gap' Rhetoric Needs Accompanying Policy

12.05.12 1:50 PM ET

Senator Marco Rubio at the Jack Kemp foundation awards dinner in California last night:

Every country has rich people. But only a few places have achieved a vibrant and stable middle class. And in the history of the world, none has been more vibrant and more stable than the American middle class.

Problem: emphasis on "has been." What was true once is not quite so true now.

It's very welcome that Marco Rubio is highlighting this social change. Welcome too that he draws attention to the hardening of class lines in the country.

One of the fundamental promises of America is the opportunity to make it to the middle class. But today there is a growing opportunity gap developing.

What will be welcome next is a policy agenda to address this challenge. That must be the work of the next four years. I've got some thoughts, which I 'll lay out in this space. But we'll need many more voices too.