After Sen. Marco Rubio ended his presidential campaign and returned to the Senate, he was faced with a familiar obstacle. Obstruction.
The Senator couldn’t get a vote on his amendment to halt Cuban refugees from abusing the welfare system, as he tried to get support to attach it to the FAA reauthorization bill. Republican leadership in the Senate and Democrats blocked his proposal, even though he demonstrated widespread bi-partisan support for his legislation.
The legislation would end automatic eligibility for federal benefits for Cuban immigrants, unless they demonstrated that they were fleeing persecution in Cuba. He estimates that abuse of the current system is currently costing American taxpayers $700 million a year.
“Let me just tell you, guys this is why people are so sick of politics,” Rubio said on the Senate floor in April after his effort failed. “Doesn’t matter — you can vote for a Democrat, you can vote for a Republican, you can vote for a vegetarian. It doesn’t matter who you vote for, nothing happens, these people don’t do anything.”
But Rubio is ready to return to the Senate, reversing his decision to give up his seat entirely to run for his presidential campaign that ultimately failed.
“The alternative is to give up,” he said, in an exclusive interview with Breitbart News. “I don’t think giving up is an option.”
As he campaigns for re-election, Rubio faces a Republican electorate that rejected him for president, overwhelmingly choosing his more controversial rival Donald Trump to be their champion in the Oval Office.
But Rubio believes Florida voters are still capable of voting for him to return to the Senate and keep Republicans in the majority.
“The presidential race is one thing, but beyond that is the role that the Senate is going to play which is its own distinct and separate branch of government that has an important role to play as well,” he said.
Rubio cited the importance of Republicans blocking Hillary Clinton, should she be elected president in November.
“If God forbid Hillary Clinton were to win, that’s going to be even more important, because if the Democrats take control of the Senate, they’ll be a rubber stamp for her agenda,” he said.
Rubio has canceled his plans to attend the Republican convention that is expected to nominate Donald Trump as their candidate for president.
He insists he wasn’t trying to avoid Trump, but rather play catchup on the campaign trail.
“It isn’t anything to do with Donald,” he said, “The problem that I have is that I got into the race late to begin with.”
If he went to the convention, Rubio explained, he wouldn’t be able to launch his campaign until late July, and was eager to start sooner.
“The Trump campaign is aware of my decision — they were fine with it,” he said.