Marco Rubio hitched his wagon to the neoconservative caravan years and years ago. Now Rubio having broken his promise to Republican voters not to seek reelection to the United States Senate stands on the brink of being returned to the Senate. The Democratic Party has become complicit in enabling Rubio’s return to prominence so we here at The Florida Squeeze are taking it upon ourselves to reeducate our readers and those who might communicate with our readers about the Rubio threat. This comes at a time when Rubio himself has sought to reinvent himself as some sort of problem-solver and empathetic Floridian, tuned into the problems of the state. Much has been made the last few days of Rubio’s unwillingness to repudiate Donald Trump – that is because Rubio himself has rhetorically worked to unleash the same angry dogs Trump has, albeit in a less boorish and more (phony) intellectual way.
Rubio is in reality undistinguished one-term Senator who prior to June’s “reset” used fear, demagoguery and implications of treason to create a national profile. In that sense he isn’t dissimilar at all to Donald Trump. Marco Rubio much like Joseph McCarthy, a man whose values Florida’s Junior Senator no doubt seeks to emulate has been able to get away with accusing members of the sitting administration of what amounts to treason. Rubio also has made it clear that if he were elected President his foreign policy would be based on personal preferences and perhaps even susceptible to manipulation from foreign leaders In the US Senate, Rubio who would unchained from the need to seek reelection in Florida again for six years could conduct his own dangerous foreign policy that undermines every multilateral principle the Hillary Clinton Administration would try and pout forward.
Rubio’s rhetoric differs from McCarthy’s in one key respect. While the often uncontrollable Wisconsin Senator couldn’t ever nail the number of alleged communists floating around the corridors of power in Washington or the Army (A fact nicely mocked in the original Manchurian Candidate movie) he only accused President Truman of “harboring” “known communists.” Senator Rubio back in January, on the other hand has about as directly as possible accused President Obama of treason or sedition.
“(President Obama) has deliberately weakened America.”
“He has made an intentional effort to humble us back to size,” “As if to say: we no longer need to be so powerful because our power has done more harm than good.
“Happiest of all have been America’s enemies,” “[It is] because when America steps back, it gives darker forces the space they need to rise. And rise they have.”
The irony of this statement of course is that Rubio has put his own ideological or personal considerations with regards to Cuba and Iran over national security. He has taken the side of foreign governments that seek to influence American policy rather than either backing American policy or giving constructive, non-politicized critiques of this administration. He has not adhered to the policy of stopping critiques at water’s edge. If Rubio were a Senator during World War II, he would have accused the Roosevelt Administration of weak prosecution of the war, would have demanded an American invasion of Western Europe earlier and likely would have been a vicious critic of General Eisenhower’s brilliant mixing of diplomacy and political considerations with military strategy. I can point to several instances in the war where Eisenhower’s handling of matters rankled right-wingers in the military, but those leaders like George S. Patton didn’t have a political mouthpiece back home willing to articulate their concerns.
Marco Rubio isn’t a team player. He’s not interested in American safety and security. This is after all a man who even used his purchase of a handgun to justify his politically motivated view that America has been left unsafe by the current President. The irony being of course that the precursor of ISIS in Syria was backed again for ideological reasons by Rubio. The goal of Florida’s Junior Senator in wanting to arm the Syrian rebels was squarely to embarrass the Obama Administration and follow the simple world view he maintains that any perceived enemy of Iran or Russia should be a friend of the United States.
It’s not that we don’t understand some of the valid critiques of President Obama’s foreign policies that Republicans could make, but generally choose not to because it undoes the whole Bush/Cheney doctrine. We understand the disappointment in President Obama’s foreign policy which has been at times very naive and willing to sacrifice American interests for idealistic goals. But this is no different than the naive idealism supported by Marco Rubio of the Bush years which promoted the spread of democracy in the Middle East even though in retrospect it was clearly in American interests to keep the most despotic and right-wing regimes in power if they were secular (like Iraq, Egypt, Libya and Syria) or not associated with major terrorist organizations (Iraq and Egypt). Some people like myself warned before the Invasion of Iraq in 2003 that Iranian influence would grow in the region. This happened, and instead of becoming partners with Iran given the reality, saber-rattling towards Tehran intensified despite the truth that the US had empowered pro-Iranian regimes in both Baghdad and Kabul by use of force. The pivot towards Iran pushed by this administration was badly needed in American foreign policy given where we sit today – realism not idealism and in time it will serve to add layers of security for Israel that they do not currently enjoy. In this regard Secretary of State John Kerry has been remarkably successful, whether or not he is given the credit by contemporaries he deserves, history will judge him well.
Rubio’s goal with these sorts of comments is not to have a foreign policy debate. We learned this during the primaries on that stage in New Hampshire someone with his minimal intellectual capability is unable to conduct such a discussion, instead choosing to focus on the nitty gritty of policy or logical critiques opted to play on fear and hate – in a similar form but with more refined words than George Wallace in 1968. On this score he’s little different from Trump no matter how much he tries to act as if he is a born-again Floridian concerned about the state’s welfare in the wake of the Pulse shooting, algae blooms, Zika outbreak and Hurricane Matthew.
Rubio’s Joe McCarty-like rhetoric might have taken a back seat as he seeks reelection to the Senate. But it is sure to return after he is back in the Senate and is all the more dangerous because in the wake of the Trump debacle, he is in position to potentially be nominated by a desperate GOP in 2020 or 2024 and become our nation’s leader. Never in the era of American global leadership would this country have someone so ill-mannered, ill-prepared and hostile as its leader. One must feel it is a body blow that American credibility may struggle to recover from. The best bet obviously is to ensure Rubio is stopped in his tracks here in Florida on November 8, for good the of our America and our cherished American values.