UNKNOWN LOCATION—The brightly lit, stark-white room gradually coming into focus as he regained consciousness, GOP presidential candidate Marco Rubio reportedly awoke in the Koch brothers’ secret compound Thursday and reached suddenly to his throbbing head to discover a cold metal device implanted behind his left ear.
As Rubio sat up slowly on a steel cot—the room otherwise empty except for a large Koch Industries logo emblazoned on one wall—sources said he was startled to hear a soothing voice reverberating inside his aching skull, evidently emanating from the smooth metal disk that he gingerly touched while panic began to well in his chest.
“Hello, Marco,” said the oddly familiar voice. “We are very pleased to have you as our guest. We have so much planned for you.”
“Remember, what’s best for us is best for you, Marco. Now, let’s begin with an exercise on threats to American free enterprise and prosperity.”
“Now that you’ve rested, we can begin,” the voice continued.
Rubio, whose heart was reportedly racing, is said to have broken into a cold sweat as he frantically tried to piece together the hazy details from the night before. Though he could vaguely recall having attended a fundraising dinner at the Cato Institute the previous evening, the presidential candidate was reportedly only able to remember drinking a strange-tasting glass of champagne at the event before everything went blank, leaving him without any recollection of the intervening hours before he awoke in the windowless, featureless room somewhere inside the Koch brothers’ sprawling subterranean facility.
According to sources, a scared and confused Rubio then absentmindedly felt for his phone and watch, only to discover that his clothes had been replaced with a white jumpsuit featuring an ID tag reading “2016 CANDIDATE #0003.”
“There’s no need to panic—you’ll be back to campaigning just as soon as our session is complete,” said the voice as Rubio searched in vain for a door or an exit of some kind along the room’s perfectly smooth walls. “Remember, what’s best for us is best for you, Marco. Now, let’s begin with an exercise on threats to American free enterprise and prosperity.”
Reports indicate that Rubio then saw the words “Now Importing Lesson” overlaid across his field of vision before hundreds of lines of conservative policy papers and essays relating to the detrimental effects of government regulation on business began scrolling in front of his eyes.
Sources confirmed that the senator was then forced to repeat thousands of talking points about how outdated labor regulations empower unions without actually creating opportunities for workers, and was repeatedly prompted by the voice to give a detailed explanation as to how a preferred plan that drastically cuts corporate taxes would create jobs. When Rubio fumbled an answer or paused for too long, he would reportedly be brought to his knees by a piercing, high-decibel frequency, followed by the voice calmly suggesting that he “try to pay a little closer attention.”
After Rubio was finally able to argue to the voice’s satisfaction that pending environmental protection legislation would ultimately hurt everyday consumers, a slot is said to have opened in the wall and a tray containing a glass of water and three slices of bread was pushed through.
“We are delighted by your progress, Marco,” said the voice as a visibly weak and hungry Rubio threw himself at the food. “Remember, we will always reward your hard work, here and outside this room.”
With no way of keeping time and without any connection to the outside world, sources said the Florida senator lost track of how long he had been in the room, and following an indeterminate number of hours of instruction, began to forget what his original stance on entitlements and immigration reform had been.
Rubio, who completed nearly a dozen drills on subjects ranging from natural gas pipelines to private health insurance, reportedly reached his breaking point when he failed to articulate his position against the Wind Production Tax Credit after 15 consecutive attempts. The fatigued presidential hopeful is said to have then curled up into a fetal position on the bare floor, rocking back and forth while whimpering, “What more do you want from me? Please, God, just let me out. Please.”
“Perhaps you have forgotten, Marco, that we want to help you,” said the voice, growing louder in Rubio’s ear. “But we can’t help you if you do not cooperate, now can we?”
Overcome with desperation, Rubio is then said to have repeatedly slammed his body against the blank white walls of his room. After several futile attempts, sources said the candidate proceeded to claw violently at the skin behind his ear in an apparent attempt to dislodge the device.
“I’m afraid you cannot leave until your session is complete, Marco,” said the voice as a thick, white cloud of gas filled the room from unseen vents, causing Rubio to slump to the floor and begin losing consciousness. “We have invested too much in you.”