Mitt Romney has finally pushed ahead of his fellow GOP candidates to essentially claim the nomination for the Republican Party. His unofficial victory was welcomed into such open arms as Florida Senator (and potential running mate) Marco Rubio who said: “There are a lot of other people out there that some of us wish had run for president, but they didn’t,” he continued “I think Mitt Romney would be a fine president, and he’d be way better than the guy who’s there right now.” Rubio sounds like the type of person that would recommend a restaurant to you simply because he never got food poisoning there.
Rubio, one of the GOP’s rising stars, came out in defense of the corporate jet tax break last year after President Obama discussed intentions to close the loophole in the tax code that allows the break and turn those funds towards deficit reduction. Rubio put on his best “Oh, no you didn’t” face and told the National Review: “But don’t go around telling people that the reason you are not doing well is because some rich guy is in a corporate jet or some oil company is making too much money.”
Like most members of the modern-day Republican Party, Rubio is out of touch with the tribulations of middle America. While low-income earners struggle to keep the electricity on or make a car payment, the oil industry pulled in $32.2 billion dollars in profit during the first three months alone of 2011. What makes this incredibly frustrating is that big oil receives $4 billion dollars in taxpayer subsidies.
Rubio has recently snagged headlines like a dolphin in a tuna net with this gem: “George W. Bush, in my opinion, did a fantastic job as president over eight years.” I can only assume Rubio does not understand what the word ‘fantastic’ means… or he was out of the country for eight years. Why else would you praise a former president that led the country into a war under false pretenses resulting in a massive loss of life, limited the progress of medical science, and initiated a series of tax cuts that would contribute trillions of dollars to our debt?
Rubio has even proven he can flip flop with the best of them, perhaps not as often, but when he does it’s spectacular. In a video made defending Medicare, Rubio says: “For me, Medicare is not a political talking point. My parents came to the United States in the late 1950s. They worked hard for over 40 years to provide their children with the chance to do all the things they could not. But they never made much money. As a result, they retired with precious little in savings.
Medicare was and is the only way they could access health care. When my father got sick last year, Medicare paid for his numerous hospital stays. And as he reached the end of his life, Medicare allowed him to die with dignity, by paying for his hospice care.”
The video was from May 2011. In August of the same year, Rubio made a speech at the Reagan Presidential Library in which he addressed Medicare and Social Security, saying: “These programs actually weakened us as a people. You see, almost forever, it was institutions in society that assumed the role of taking care of one another. If someone was sick in your family, you took care of them. If a neighbor met misfortune, you took care of them. You saved for your retirement and your future because you had to. We took these things upon ourselves in our communities, our families, and our homes, and our churches and our synagogues.”
As the year goes on, more policies and individuals will become connected to Romney and his quest for the presidency. We have already witnessed Romney seemingly adopt Paul Ryan and his atrocious budget plan, which would see the extension of the Bush tax cuts, the end of Pell grants for over a million college students, among other poorly thought-out provisions.
Marco Rubio and Paul Ryan are the future of the Republican Party. Thanks to the Romney campaign, it’s possible that future could arrive sooner than we think and that scares the hell out of me.
Not only does Rubio flip-flop like the best (worst?) of them, he lies like the best (worst?) of them too. Thank God, for people like Rachel Maddow who will call him out.