Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) cast the deciding vote for Obamatrade on Tuesday as it squeeked through the U.S. Senate 60-37, and his Senate office is still outright refusing to answer whether he even knew what he was voting on.
Rubio, a Republican presidential candidate, was the deciding vote necessary for the U.S. Senate to clear the final 60-vote threshold and eventually, later this week, send to President Barack Obama’s desk the Trade Promotion Authority (TPA) bill that would fast-track at least three highly secretive trade deals that Obama has been negotiating for years.
TPA will, now that it’s going to pass, effectively ensure the congressional approval of the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP), Trade in Services Agreement (TiSA) and Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (T-TIP). The text of the TiSA and T-TIP agreements is currently entirely secretive, even to lawmakers on Capitol Hill and their staffs, though WikiLeaks did uncover several TiSA documents that leaked and prove the deal would surrender congressional power over U.S. immigration policy to the executive branch and perhaps to a newly created transnational entity.
The TPP text for the Pacific Rim trade deal that Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL) notes would give the Sultan of Brunei—who has implemented Sharia Law in his nation and banned Christmas, literally—an “equal vote to that of the United States,” on the other hand, is available for members of Congress to read. The only catch is they have to go to a secret room inside the Capitol basement for classified readings to read it in person, they can’t take notes, and only their staffers with enough high enough security clearances can go with them to read it—and their staff can’t go without them.
Before the Senate voted on TPA to fast track these deals the first time back in May, Breitbart News asked every Senate Republican if they read the text of the TPP before voting to fast-track it. Only a handful said they did.
Sens. Rand Paul (R-KY), Ted Cruz (R-TX), Jeff Sessions (R-AL), James Lankford (R-OK) and Mike Lee (R-UT) went to go read it. Rubio, on the other hand, was one of many who has consistently and repeatedly refused to answer whether he read the deal text. His office refuse to answer yet again on Tuesday whether he went to go read it before the first time he voted for TPA or before the second time he did—on Tuesday’s cloture vote—and that means he’s again choosing to give the public impression he did not read the text of the deal before he voted to fast track it through Congress.
This could have significant implications for Rubio on the campaign trail as he seeks the Republican nomination for the presidency as activists in early states are furious with his decision to support Obamatrade when it’s clear he doesn’t know what he’s talking about.
New Hampshire conservative and Merrimack Councilman Bill Boyd, who’s endorsed Paul for president, told Breitbart News while on a recent reporting trip to New Hampshire that he’s upset that Rubio didn’t read the deal before he voted to fast-track it.
“He’s been the biggest advocate against Obamacare and the ACA, and for all the time Nancy Pelosi kept on saying ‘we have to pass this bill to find out what’s in it,’” Boyd said.
You’re telling me Marco Rubio voted for a bill without reading it? Are you kidding? You know what, we elect people to go down there to represent us. At a bare minimum you have staff. Staff should be providing some kind of an executive summary. If it’s a thousand pages, you should be cutting it up and giving it to staff and get 10 or 20 page synopses. If your staff can’t bring a particular issue on in a two page memo than they have no idea what they’re talking about. For Sen. Rubio to admit that, that’s kind of surprising. That’s kind of surprising not to read a document and make an opinion without even looking at it. You need to be able to formulate an opinion. If somebody gives you the cliff notes version of a bill, that’s at least better than not reading it at all. So that’s kind of surprising.
Boyd told Breitbart News he endorsed Paul for president because Paul is not just fighting the Democrats and the Washington machine—he’s fighting the Republican establishment and Wall Street too.
“I’m a middle class kid, and my wife and I we lead middle class lives—and Senator Paul rallying against Wall Street and corporate cronyism I think is very compelling,” Boyd said. “I’m a student of the constitution, a big fan of the Bill of Rights and to me there’s no bigger advocate for the Constitution and the Bill of Rights and I’ll throw in the Declaration of Independence than Senator.”
Derry town councilman Mark Osborne also was shocked that Rubio didn’t read the bill before he voted for it.
“I would be embarrassed to show for a town council meeting never having read the information that I needed to,” Osborne said in an interview when asked about how Rubio’s staff won’t answer if he read the TPP before voting to fast-track. Osborne’s interview came inside a local New Hampshire diner while Paul shook hands and visited with various patrons. Osborne hasn’t endorsed anyone in 2016, but said he’s looking closely at Paul.
“I think we elect this people to do the work that we as a citizenry can’t do,” Osborne continued with his answer about Rubio and TPP text.
We’re not able to go to Washington to read all these bills—we elect them to do that. They need to be reading these bills. I support Senator Paul’s stance on that 100 percent, number one. Number two, if the bills are being written in a way that no one has time to read it, either one something is sketchy or two the way these bills are being drafted has to change.
Down in South Carolina, it’s not much better for Rubio on this issue.
Taylor Brown, a conservative columnist for the massively influential South Carolina online news outlet FITSNews, told Breitbart News that Rubio’s actions are “completely irresponsible.”
“It’s completely irresponsible,” Brown said in an email.
If you want to change international business, and commerce in general, for the next 50+ years, you need to know what’s in it. You’d think after the ACA failed so miserably without being read, our Senators would have learned their lesson. Apparently not. Rubio is willing to allow the President to completely change the way we make and ratify treaties on the chance that the Republicans will win the White House in 2016 making them able to do this same type of thing. Even if I supported Obamatrade, which I don’t, I firmly believe all elected officials should read what they pass, and be knowledgeable of what they’re inflicting on their constituents and American citizens in their entirety. If our Senate passes Obamatrade, they will have failed America.
Greenville-based WORD radio host Vince Coakley told Breitbart News that Rubio already burned Republicans by working with Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY) on the “Gang of Eight” amnesty bill. This, Coakley says, is the icing on the cake that proves Rubio can’t be trusted.
“Senator Rubio already betrayed our trust by joining the Gang of 8 on immigration,” Coakley, who’s launched the Sacred Honor USA PAC, designed to get more liberty-minded leaders elected, people who won’t follow the Washington establishment, said in an email. “Practicing the Nancy Pelosi rule on legislation of this magnitude—‘we need to pass the bill so we can find out what’s in it’—is no way to rebuild that trust. By failing to answer such a simple question, how can we take him seriously as a Presidential candidate?”
Breitbart News has given Rubio more than a month—and at least five separate opportunities—to answer whether he read the text of TPP before he voted for it.
In Iowa, he’s not faring much better. Steve Deace, a nationally syndicated conservative radio host based in the Hawkeye State, told Breitbart News he too is disgusted with Rubio on this matter.
“I believe we already have a political party that passes massive bills without reading them so we can find out what’s in them,” Deace said in an email. “I would hope Rubio of all people would’ve learned the dangers of such massive bills the public doesn’t trust after his experience with the Gang of 8’s comprehensive amnesty plan.”