Republican presidential candidate and Florida Senator Marco Rubio responded to criticisms of his attendance record by fellow candidate New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, and GOP presidential candidate Donald Trump’s criticisms of Representative Trey Gowdy (R-SC), who recently endorsed Rubio, on Wednesday’s “Fox & Friends” on the Fox News Channel.
Rubio stated, in response to criticisms of his attendance records by Christie and fellow candidate former Florida Governor Jeb Bush, “Well, it’s interesting that for example, Chris Christie’s a funny guy, but he’s never in New Jersey. He’s gone half the time. And the reason why I’m not in Washington right now is two reasons. One, Washington’s completely broken, and that’s why I’m running for president, because these votes that [they]’re taking in Washington, they don’t count. We vote to repeal Obamacare, but unless you have a president that will sign it, it’s not going to matter. We want to strengthen our military, but unless we have a president committed to it it won’t matter. Washington is completely broken, completely out of touch, half — more than half the things that happen in Washington are just for show and for talk, and as a result, that’s why I said, we’re going to run for president. Because only if we can change the — we can only change the direction of this country with a new president that will move us in the right direction, not this disaster that we have today. But what’s happening, I think unfortunately with some of these folks that you’ve mentioned, they’re growing increasingly desperate and increasingly nasty, and that’s okay. I’m not running against them. I’m running for president. after eight years of Barack Obama, this country cannot afford to elect just another Republican, another person who’s been waiting in line for their turn to run for president, and this country most certainly cannot afford Hillary Clinton, because we can’t afford four more years like the last eight.”
The discussion then turned to Donald Trump’s criticisms of Gowdy. Rubio said of Trump, “Well, he wanted to make Trey Gowdy his attorney general not that long ago. Obviously, any time you don’t support Donald Trump he finds out a reason not to like you, and that’s fine. The bottom line is this election is about serious things, like the future of the greatest country in the world. This is an America where millions of people feel left behind. they don’t even recognize their own country anymore, because of what Barack Obama has done to it. We’re going to change that. That’s why I’m running for president. that’s what Trey Gowdy’s helping us do. And of course we’re excited about having him on our team.”
Rubio was also asked what he would do with regards to Afghanistan. He responded, “we’re going to target terrorists anywhere in the world where they’re found. If we — we’re going to have — we’re going to rebuild our military. If there are terrorist camps that are plotting against Americans, we will find them, and we will destroy them. And if we capture these terrorists alive, they’re getting a one-way ticket to Guantanamo, and in Guantanamo they’re going to tell us everything they know about plots past, present, and the ones they’re planning for the future.”
The interview concluded with Rubio saying of members of Congress being caught up in NSA surveillance of Israel, “I want to be very careful. I’m on — a member of the intelligence committee, so I’m — obviously, I want to be very careful what I say about information of this kind. Obviously, people read that report, they have a right to be concerned this morning about it. They have a right to be concerned about the fact that, while some leaders around the world are no longer being targeted, one of — our strongest ally in the Middle East, Israel is. These are all concerns and they’re legitimate. but these are one of those complicated issues when it comes to intelligence matters. we have to be very careful about how we discuss it, especially since there’s a press report that I don’t think gives the entire story, and not defending the Obama administration, I actually think it might even be worse than some people might think. But this is an issue that we’ll keep a close eye on in the role that I have in the intelligence committee. But — not trying to be evasive but i want to be very careful, in a national broadcast like this, how I discuss these sorts of issues.”
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