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ICYMI: Rubio on Fox & Friends
Washington, D.C. — U.S. Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) joined Fox & Friends to discuss states reopening, continued support for small businesses, the threat posed by China, and oversight of the intelligence community. See below for highlights and watch the full interview here.
On states’ different policies on reopening:
“I do think it’s good it’s happening at the state level … All of that ties into why it has been smart by this Administration to allow every state, and communities within those states, to make the decisions that are best for them … Ultimately, what we all should agree on is that we have now entered that period where we have to learn to sort of deal with what we have, try to mitigate and minimize the damage, protect the most vulnerable, and continue to work on developing a vaccine so we can solve this problem permanently.”
On bailing out states with pre-existing debt obligations:
“Well, I don’t think the federal government is in a position to be bailing out jurisdictions, whether it’s a county or a city or a state that made bad decisions in the past. I think the one thing I’m open about and I think the White House has expressed flexibility on as well is, there is a baseline of ongoing operations, you know you need police officers, you need sanitation workers, you need the basic services of government and that’s been hurt by the downturn. We don’t want any of these cities laying off police officers. That’s one thing. You separate that from, however, from a city or state for that matter that made bad decisions over the last 10 or 15 years. They have a huge debt coming into this crisis — a pre-existing problem. That is not something the federal government should be bailing out.”
On helping minority small businesses in the next rescue plan:
“Minority small businesses are disportionately within industries that were badly hurt by this closedown, whether it’s restaurants or the service sector … and I think that is why you are seeing those numbers. I think that we are entering a period now, because every state is different in what they’re doing but many places are beginning to open up, you have people operating. They’re open, but they are at 25 percent capacity or 50 percent capacity, but the rent is still at 100 percent, for example. Their overhead costs are still at 100 hundred percent.
“So I think we are transitioning into a phase, where to the extent we do more — and I think there will be more done — it should be about helping small businesses restart their operations. Get going in the early days where maybe the cash flow won’t be there to restart and that is very different from where we were 8 or 9 weeks ago. That is why I think it has been smart to take a pause, see how this thing is evolving and developing, so that whatever we come up with works, when it finally becomes law.”
On China threatening a new Cold War on the United States and threatening Australia:
“I think they are, and it is not just Australia obviously they have been forward leading on this and we need to do everything we can to be supportive of them. India has now had a number of border skirmishes with China in the last couple of weeks. Other countries in the region in New Zealand and other places have faced — Japan, that is an ongoing issue as well — I do think it is important to invest in that four country alliance, with Japan, with India, and with Australia included in that mix. But look, this has been par for the course under President Xi, he’s been very, very aggressive. This Administration is finally standing up to him. But they have gotten away with this now for the better part of the decade leading up to this moment and of course culminating in what we are seeing here now in Hong Kong.”
On the Flynn case:
“The way that whole thing has played out where a judge decides to review this matter and take it in an alternative route is very unusual to say the least. And I think there’s another point that needs to be made about this whole situation with Mr. Flynn, and that is that information that individuals in the previous Administration become privy to was leaked to the media. Someone took information that was classified and decided to leak it to a reporter to further a narrative. And that’s actually been a process here that has done tremendous damage to the FBI and to the intelligence community … And it’s unfortunate because the overwhelming majority of the people in the FBI don’t behave this way, but a handful of people in important positions obviously did things that have now caused great harm to the reputation of the FBI and the intelligence community, and it’s something that needs to be repaired. And I think repairing it begins by holding those responsible for that sort of action accountable.”
On DNI Ratcliffe being sworn in today:
“I think Ratcliffe is going to do a great job. This is a very smart person, this is a very serious person, this is a very decent person. And at the end of the day that position oversees the 17 individual agencies involved in intelligence collection in this country and that’s a very important role to make sure that everyone is focused on the job of the intelligence community, which is to be involved in operations, to gather information and to analyze information, and to provide that analysis and information to policymakers so policymakers can make decisions. That is the job of the intelligence community. That is what it does when it is doing its best. That is what most of them do every single day and that is what he is going to be able to operationalize and I think bring some synthesis to.”