Marco Rubio has juggled his views on immigration laws for years, adapting to the political landscape to advance his career. I have been amazed that some pundits appear to be so mesmerized by his speaking ability and political skills, that they don’t critically appraise what he has said and done as they do with others.
We were living in Florida when Rubio ran for U. S. Senator. I voted for Rubio in that 2010 primary, but I won’t be voting for him in the 2016 presidential primary. Let me tell you why.
Last week Eagle Forum released a scorching report on Marco Rubio’s work on the Gang of Eight. His tenure as Speaker of the Florida House of Representatives is mentioned as are his current activities as a U. S. Senator and a presidential candidate. Mark Krikorian, executive director of the Center for Immigration Studies, first wrote a blog post on the report and later a full article. In the post he wrote:
“Eagle Forum has published a memo detailing Marco Rubio’s lies to conservatives in his effort to get Chuck Schumer’s immigration bill passed. “Lies” is a strong word, but it’s the only word that fits. This wasn’t the natural trimming of politicians, like Rubio’s justification of sugar subsidies in the service of his financial patrons the Fanjul brothers. From Cicero to Reagan, all successful politicians engage in misdirection or exploit ambiguity (including all the other current Republican hopefuls). In this case, though, Rubio led a Clintonian campaign of calculated falsehoods designed to sell Schumer’s Gang of Eight bill to conservatives.“
In his article, Immigration Is a Deal-Breaker — No to Rubio 2016, he overviews the report, and concludes:
“To sum up: Rubio was anti-enforcement in the Florida legislature, then an enforcement hawk at election time in 2010, then Schumer’s cabana boy in 2013, then a hawk again at election time. Anyone can flip once — people really do change their minds, or even see political writing on the wall and embrace a new position. But flipping and flopping in time with the election cycle should be cause for skepticism, to say the least.”
I urge you to read the article and the report. If you’ve forgotten or were unaware of the in’s and out’s of the 2013 Gang of Eight bill, you should read them simply to see for yourself the staggering amount of misrepresentation and outright lying that Rubio has done.
Few ever go back to Rubio’s time as Florida House Speaker, and when you begin there, you realize that Rubio was not duped by Schumer nor was he naive. As Speaker, Rubio blocked popular immigration bills. It’s my opinion that he did this because he knew openly opposing the bills would hurt his future political ambitions. So he let them die on the vine.
This is from the Tampa Bay Tribune, April 8, 2008: Immigration bills face long odds in state House.
“The topic is ready-made for Republican lawmakers in an election year. And Tuesday, six bills were aired before a Florida House panel.
“Among the ideas: require police to report suspected undocumented immigrants, prohibit government benefits for adult undocumented immigrants, and even give criminals the option to be deported back to their home countries.
“But the efforts are going nowhere — a reality that reflects the state’s immigrant-dependent tourism and agricultural industries, and the political power of South Florida and its deep immigrant roots.
““There is nothing the state of Florida can do unilaterally to solve global warming. And there is nothing we can do unilaterally to solve immigration,” said Marco Rubio, the Miami Republican who is the first Cuban-American to become House speaker.”
If you go to the bottom of that column, these six bills are listed. As you read through them, it’s obvious that Rubio’s rationale was an excuse that doesn’t hold water.
Immigration bills in 2008 session
• HB 73, by Rep. Don Brown, R-DeFuniak Springs. Requires verification of immigration status of people stopped for a DUI; requires public employer and contractors to participate in federal program to verify status of newly hired employees. Related bill in Senate: SB 624.
• HB 159, by Rep. Sandra Adams, R-Orlando. Requires officials to verify status of anyone who applies for government benefits. Related bill in Senate: SB 388.
• HB 571, by Rep. Dick Kravitz, R-Jacksonville. Requires law enforcement officers, sheriffs, chief correctional officers and circuit court clerks to report suspected undocumented workers who have been arrested or detained. Identical Senate bill: SB 540.
• HB 577, by Rep. Trudi Williams, R-Fort Myers. Allows any undocumented immigrant who serves half a jail sentence to agree to be deported back to their country of origin. Related Senate bill: SB 540.
• HB 821, by Rep. Gayle Harrell, R-Stuart. Requires state agencies that provide benefits to verify citizenship of any person 14 years or older who applies for services. Related Senate bill: SB 388
• HB 1247, by Rep. Dan Gelber, D-Miami Beach. Requires police, sheriff and other criminal intake centers to check status of suspected undocumented immigrants and report offenders. Identical Senate bill: SB 2738.
When Rubio ran against Charlie Crist in the 2010 Republican primary for the U. S. Senate, he went on record opposing amnesty as we saw on the tapes played during the late January debate. If you missed the debate, PowerLine documents four Senate campaign events with quotes from Rubio on amnesty and immigration in Did Marco Rubio Break His Promises to Florida Voters? All those promises were broken with the Gang of Eight.
As Florida House Speaker Rubio did a passive-aggressive feint on immigration, then during his Senate campaign he promised to be an immigration hawk. Later in the U. S. Senate he flipped and joined the Gang of Eight as its face, misrepresenting it and lying about it from beginning to end. He’s still busy with his legerdemain on immigration in the Senate and on the campaign trail.
This isn’t speculation. His record is there to read. It’s been extensively documented by Eagle Forum, and his latest work on amnesty and H1-B visas is extensively documented by Michelle Malkin.
Even if you agree with Rubio on these issues, doesn’t it give you pause that he has so openly backtracked and lied, and that he continues to do so during his presidential campaign? If he brazenly broke his promises, and continues to brazenly deny what he did, how do you know he will keep any promises made on any other policy or action? His lack of integrity is appalling.
As Krikorian said:
“…Rubio led a Clintonian campaign of calculated falsehoods designed to sell Schumer’s Gang of Eight bill to conservatives.”