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Meet Your Representatives: Everything To Know About Marco Rubio

You may remember Marco Rubio from the 2016 Republican Presidential primary race, in which he went up against Donald Trump and Ted Cruz, among others. However, Rubio’s career in politics began long before that. In 2000, he was elected to the Florida House of Representatives. Rubio subsequently ran for a seat in the United States Senate in 2010, where he has since remained, garnering influence and respect among the Republican Party. Rubio will not be up for reelection again until 2022, but as the younger generation grows into voting age, the importance of knowing exactly where you stand on the politicians meant to represent you has never been more vital.

Rubio has a lifetime rating from the American Conservative Union of 97 percent, meaning he is one of the most staunchly Conservative senators. Regarding social-type issues, Rubio opposes abortion and same-sex marriage. On security and defense, Rubio favors increased border protection and military spending, and believes that gun control would generally not prevent gun violence from occurring. He faced severe backlash for this stance in 2018 after the Parkland, Florida shooting, but has continued to voice his support for the National Rifle Association (NRA). As of 2017, he received about $3.3 million in campaign donations from the NRA and has since said that he will not refuse further NRA money.

While Independent Senator Bernie Sanders has publicized the idea of universal healthcare in his Presidential campaigns, Rubio instead supports the repeal of the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare. As racial issues mount in exposure following the death of George Floyd, Rubio stated that while such injustices must be addressed, “we are not going to abolish or defund the police departments,” and that those protesting in the streets are “crazy radicals who hate and want to destroy this country of ours.”

[bf_image id="q5c64y-dyc96g-6cpz8n"] To simplify Rubio’s stance on taxes, he is broadly in favor of cutting them, particularly for businesses. However, he does support Social Security with some modifications, such as raising the age that one can begin accepting benefits. In 2015, he introduced a tax bill along with Republican Senator Mike Less, which proposed taxing 35 percent on those who made more than $75,000 annually and 15 percent for those who earn less. Though this plan did not come to pass, it was widely criticized for the harsh tax brackets and how it would affect middle-class earners.

Also important to note is that Rubio is Cuban-American and has a heavy influence on the policies that the federal government enacts regarding Latin America. His grandfather even fled to the U.S. illegally in the 1960s when Fidel Castro rose to power. However, in an apparent contradiction, Rubio supports a strict immigration policy and greater funding for security on the U.S.-Mexico border. The only exceptions, he says, should be for those who obviously pose no threat to the United States (like his grandfather, who was an old man with a plethora of health issues). In terms of modern foreign policy, Rubio suggests that the U.S. should have a role in confronting Iran, Russia and North Korea.

Though Rubio’s stances may change with time and new events, especially as his reelection date comes closer, it is vital that all Florida voters stay up-to-date on understanding his policies and exactly what he would do if reelected. For information straight from Rubio’s office, visit rubio.senate.gov.  

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Lane Webb is a Media/Communications Studies major with minors in English and Public Administration. During her time at FSU, she has interned with the U.S. House of Representatives, publishing companies, and marketing firms.
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