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ICYMI: Rubio Joins Mornings with Maria
Washington, D.C. — U.S. Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) joined Mornings with Maria to discuss the latest on Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, China’s involvement in American investing and trading, and more. See below for highlights and watch the full interview here.
On the free world’s response to the invasion of Ukraine:
“The free world is doing a lot, more than I thought it was going to do. I’m actually pleasantly surprised at the rallying we’ve seen all throughout Europe. And other countries now have joined — Korea, Japan — in imposing crippling sanctions.
“The Russian economy is in total free-fall. I would expect the unexpected inside of Russia. These things move quickly. We’re never going to see it coming if something is happening internally. [The Russians are] going to be in a really difficult place a week from now, when you look at the impact this is having on their economy.
“There are all kinds of CEOs who are abandoning the country. Virtually everyone who can get out, whether it’s a CEO or worker, … is getting out right now. The combination of that brain drain and the capital they’re taking them — Putin is banning anyone leaving with more than $10,000 — the impact [of it] on their economy is devastating. So that’s going to begin to have an impact.
“As we know in this country, these kinds of wars, what [Putin is] doing now, it costs money. He’s not going to be able to afford it.”
On the restriction of investment of Western funds in Russian markets:
“That’s a good sign that the market’s taken [in restricting investment in Russian markets]. We need to bring legal structure around it. My bill basically prevents that investment from happening.
“I’ve been focused on China in that regard. I think that’s the real long-term problem for this country. China is Russia times a thousand. Their economy is way bigger, their military might is superior at this point…. [And] let’s not forget there are American companies and their CEOs who are basically lobbyists for the Chinese government’s position on a range of issues because they’re desperate for market share over there, because they’ve got factories and production over there. But Russia is also a threat, especially with this free-fall in their economy and the lack of transparency and the like.
“You’ve got a lot of Americans [who] every month … put a little bit aside in some retirement fund that they don’t control, and it’s invested in very risky things in Russia, and they’re going to see themselves deeply impacted by it. My bill would just make that [restriction on investment] permanent…. I don’t think good economic days are ahead for Russia anytime soon, and there’s just a lot of volatility over there right now.”
On Communist China’s subversion of the rules-based international order:
“If I, as an American, control a publicly traded company, there’s all sorts of things I have to disclose to shareholders every year. Because you want people not to lose their money and get scammed. But Chinese companies don’t have to do that. They should be required to do it immediately or they can’t be listed here….”
“Xi Jinping [has] got something we need to call him out on. He loves to go around the world talking about [how] China is for noninterference. Invading another country is a strong interference. [The Chinese] should be condemning [Russia’s invasion of Ukraine]. [Xi Jinping] spends a lot of time [worrying] about separatists in Tibet. He argues Taiwan is a part of China and they’re separatist. And yet he’s supporting Vladimir Putin’s efforts to support separatists in Ukraine and to balkanize that country.
“My guess is Xi Jinping and the Communist Party of China [are] working on … a broadly accepted alternative to that SWIFT banking system. Because if they can create something like that and make it available to Russia and other sanctioned countries, that would be a big move for them, in terms of replacing the U.S.-led international global order that they so desperately want to overthrow and replace. I would keep an eye on that.
“I also think [the Communist Chinese are] watching to see what happens to Russia after invading Ukraine, because whatever happens to them is kind of an indicator of what they might face the day they try to move on Taiwan.”
On whether an invasion of Taiwan will come sooner rather than later:
“I don’t know if we can predict [the invasion] exactly but I think [there are] a couple things I’m pretty comfortable saying. The first is, … we won’t reach the end of this decade without China making some move. They’re planning their new Communist Party Congress here fairly soon. There’s rumors they will announce some new Taiwan policy.
“My sense is, the Chinese would prefer for Taiwan to just surrender, to look at the world and say, ‘If Putin was able to take Ukraine, and the world couldn’t stop him, there’s no way [we’ll] be able to stop China, which is much more powerful, so we might as well negotiate the terms under which we go under the Chinese government’s authority.’ That’s, I think, Xi Jinping’s preference.
“But one of the things … we’re learning … in Ukraine is [that] the more capable Taiwan is at making it expensive and painful for China to move against them militarily, the less likely China is to do it, the further out in the future it pushes that. That’s what the Taiwanese should focus on, and that’s what we need to help them focus on. They need to become a porcupine. It’s painful to eat it, painful to swallow it, painful to digest it. That’s what we need to make [them into]. We need to continue to raise the pain threshold [for invading], and the Taiwanese need to focus on that as part of their defense strategy.”
On President Biden’s State of the Union address:
“I don’t think [President Biden] was honest with the American people. He talks about six-and-a-half million jobs that were created. He forgot we lost nine-and-a-half million, so there’s three million jobs that are still not filled. He didn’t talk about the worker shortage out there, 11 million jobs unfilled, over half the employers in the country say they can’t find workers.
“[President Biden] bragged about how much more people are making. They are. Paychecks have gone up because it’s harder to find workers. But what he didn’t tell [the American people] is, everything costs more. It’s eating up your paycheck, it’s wiping it out.
“[President Biden] wasn’t honest about his plans. Every one of the plans he’s proposed increased the debt, increased the deficit, increased the government, in some ways codifies socialism, and wouldn’t solve any of the problems [we face], in fact it would make it worse…. Everything in America today is worse off than it was in January of 2021 when [President Biden] was sworn in. Everything — the economy, employment, everything. It’s worse, not better.”
On the President Biden’s disastrous energy policies:
“Today, on this very day, and tomorrow…, the United States will buy 600,000 barrels of oil from Vladimir Putin, who is a butcher. We could easily replace that with just a 50% increase in the shortfall that now exists in American oil production. [President Biden] won’t do it. We need to ban that [oil] and replace it.
“All that green new energy, that Green New Deal scam he’s pushed on the American people, what it has done to American energy prices is horrendous, it’s horrifying. Today we’re producing 1.2 million barrels of oil less than we were in 2019 and early 2020…. It [has] raised the cost of living [for] everybody. When fuel prices go up, the price of everything goes up because everything we buy has to be transported by something that burns that fuel.”
On President Biden’s nomination of Sarah Bloom Raskin to the Federal Reserve:
“Another point [President Biden] said in the State of the Union [was], ‘Give me my Fed nominees.’ [Sarah Bloom Raskin] said she doesn’t think banks should be offering accounts or doing business with the fossil fuel industry[, so she shouldn’t be confirmed].
“I have nothing against solar panels and wind and all that stuff, but you can’t power a 21st century economy, with today’s technology, using those things. We need natural gas, we need oil. God has blessed America with it. So let’s use it.”