Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Marco Rubio: All talk and no action

Marco Rubio and Norman Braman at a 2012 rally for Israel
Marco Rubio and Norman Braman at a 2012 rally for Israel
Marco Rubio now says that evangelicals should love gay people and not judge them. This from a man who still opposes marriage equality. Rubio may be a United States Senator but his full time job has been, and continues to be, to run for President of the United States. Everything that Rubio says and does is scripted to that end. He's not called “Marco-Bot” for nothing.

Here is part of what Rubio said at David Lane's Pastors and Pews event which he never should have been at in the first place. He addressed some of the most bigoted anti-gay Christian leaders in America.

To love our neighbors in the LGBT community, we should recognize that even as we stand firm in the belief that marriage is the union between one man and one woman, there are those in that community and in same-sex relationships whose love for one another is real, and who feel angry and humiliated that the law did not recognize their relationship as a marriage. To love our neighbors, we must recognize that many have experienced, sometimes, severe condemnation and judgment from some Christians.
I have heard similar refrains from far-right evangelicals like Al Mohler. Yet when it comes to nondiscrimination and Equal Protection they are uniformly in opposition. If Rubio's talk means anything then let him sign on as a cosponsor of the Equality Act.

Marco Rubio's motor is bigger than his boat. He is a man of enormous ambition and a mediocre intellect who has gotten by on his good looks. As we saw in the Republican presidential debates, once off script Rubio is hopelessly lost. He is also billionaire auto mogul Norman Braman's house pet. Braman reportedly spent between $10 million and $25 million on Rubio's failed presidential campaign and Braman employs Rubio's wife as a consultant (J.D. Consulting) and reportedly as an employee.

Rubio, who was elected as a Tea Party candidate, hates his job. He was determined to leave the Senate at the end of the year when his current term expires. He hasn't done much. Over the last four years he has sponsored only two inconsequential bills that have passed both houses of Congress. They are the “Girls Count Act of 2015” which really doesn't do anything and the “Venezuela Defense of Human Rights and Civil Society Extension Act of 2016.” Who knew? Rubio is also an original cosponsor of the obnoxiously anti-gay (and now seemingly dead) First Amendment Defense Act. He is not a cosponsor of the Equality Act. I also note that he opposed expansion of background checks in 2013 (which might have prevented the Orlando massacre).  So you will forgive me when I am cynical about Rubio seemingly making nice to the gay community with some platitudes in a speech that was probably written by multiple staffers and then focus group tested.

In addition to his nearly six years in the Senate Rubio was a Florida state legislator for eight years. While he was a reasonably effective centrist speaker of the Florida House (with an enormous bloated staff), I am unaware of anything that Rubio has ever done in public office to the benefit of the LGBT community.

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