Jun 17 2021
Washington, D.C. — U.S. Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) joined Mornings with Maria on Fox Business to discuss President Joe Biden’s meeting with Vladimir Putin and approach to foreign policy, the border crisis, Big Tech, and Unidentified Aerial Phenomena (UAP). See below for highlights and watch the full interview here.
“Putin saying [the recent cyberattacks] came from the cyber realm of the United States, it’s a typical Putin-type statement. To begin with, what these hackers do is they lease an IP address in the infrastructure of the U.S. But they’re not sitting in downtown Chicago; they are somewhere operating out of Russia — and he knows it. In Russia, if they want to crack down on you, they will come get you. We've seen… what he does to defectors.
“The other thing that is stunning is apparently Joe Biden handed him a list and said, ‘Here are the  things that you can’t hack. If it’s not on this list, it's not a big deal.’ I can't believe that that’s true. I cannot believe that they actually printed out a list and said, ‘Here are 16 industries where, if you attack, I will get mad.’ Anything that is not on the lists, I guess, is fair game. That is something out of a sitcom; that can't be real."
“At the end of the day, it’s not so much about the list, per se, — although I think it gives you a little sense of the mentality — and that is, we’re not going to send [the President] into that room to meet with Valdmir Putin unless he has a list and it’s written on paper so he doesn't mess up.
“But I think Putin leaves there and says, number one, ‘This guy gave me a list, and on that list there are 16 or 17 industries that if they get hit, he’s going to be mad, so that pretty much gives me free rein to do anything else and wave this list in his face and say I don't know what you’re complaining about.’
“But the second is, I think it gives them the sense that [President Biden] may be not in full control of the government over there; he may not be the one entirely running the show. They had to actually print a list for him. If I were Putin I would probably want to get Biden and him to do one of those joint press conferences like you saw him do with Trump three or four years ago. Because I think in that setting, Putin probably thought he could take advantage of him and one up him.
“That’s what I’m most concerned about, is — does Putin leave the summit with a sense that he can now test America and get away with certain things?”
On the Biden Administration’s approach to foreign policy:
“I think the Iranians and all these other countries that are watching these negotiations have a clear sense that Joe Biden and his Administration are desperate to get back into the Iran deal. And that’s why I think Iran is going to make unreasonable claims, and they may get it; they may get a lot of it. They want cash. They want reparations for the four years of sanctions and the money they lost. They want a guarantee that a future president can't come back and unravel the whole deal. They are going to ask for all sorts of these things because I think they sense that Biden wants a deal so badly that he will give in on some of the things.
“Look at China. You can talk tough, you can warn them, you can do this and that — but at the end of the day, one of the first things he did a few weeks ago is he waived these restrictions that were placed on military companies and investment in them, some moves that the Trump Administration had put in place, because somebody came to him.
“Same thing with the Nord Stream pipeline. They didn't sanction that because what happens is you talk tough, but then you go talk to someone at the State Department that says, ‘We really can't do this because if we do this, it will upset Germany, or it will upset some other country. That’s not the mature, conventional thing to do, so let's talk tough, let's send a clear warning and a very stern statement, but then let's not impose these sanctions to show them we're different from the previous administration.’
“And so I think the Chinese, and the Russians, and everyone else, the Iranians, are saying, ‘Hey, it’s back to business as usual over there.’ And that’s what they wanted. They loved business as usual before Trump came to office.”
On the Thrift Savings Plan (TSP) Board steering the retirement savings of military and federal employees to China:
“The most outrageous thing of all is federal employees, including members of the military, [have] their retirement funds go into a Thrift Savings Plan. The Thrift Savings Plan invests in companies that are developing weapons to kill them. You have people taking their retirement money and investing it in companies who are working to kill them if we ever get into combat or into any sort of active event with the Chinese. It’s crazy, and I have a bill to ban that. I’ve been working on it for two years.”
On the border crisis and Vice President Kamala Harris’s trip to Guatemala:
“[The border crisis] is a federal responsibility… I do not remember, certainly not in my years of watching American politics, a more disastrous series of meetings and a foreign visit than Kamala Harris’s was to Guatemala. I can't remember a more disastrous episode for a Vice President or for a President, for that matter.
“[President Biden and Vice President Harris] campaigned for months on [how] they’re going to be totally different from Trump, and no matter what [the Vice President] says and they say now, the perception is out there in much of Central America that the United States under Joe Biden is very lax. And that is an incentive for people to take this journey. It is a dangerous journey. They shouldn’t do it, but they are not going to listen to Kamala Harris because she says, ‘Don't come.’ They have got a year and a half of her running for President saying, ‘We're not turning anyone away.’ They believed her.”
On Big Tech:
“Well first of all, they’re monopolies, and too much power is now concentrated in the hands of five or six companies. If Apple, Microsoft, Google, Facebook, and Twitter all get in a room and say, ‘We want to destroy someone, we want to shut them down, we don’t like them, we don’t like their politics’ — they will destroy you. They will wipe you off the face of the Earth. You won’t exist. You can't do commerce, you can't do business, you can't communicate. This can't continue.
“Second of all, they have acted in bad faith. As an example, if a year ago you were going around telling people that the lab leak theory in China was credible, they would not have allowed you to post that. They would have taken it down, and if you did it repeatedly you would have been framed and labeled a conspiracy theorist and a spreader of disinformation. A year later, they had to reform their policies. But people's reputations were destroyed; people were called terrible things.
“This happens every single day. They decide what is true, and you can't sue them...They have to act in good faith, and if they don't, they should be liable just like a publisher is.”
On Rubio’s planned legislation to address Big Tech’s monopoly power:
“It’s been an uphill climb on this. I think you have on the one hand people who say, ‘Yeah, I’m open to it,’ but behind the scenes are not for it because Big Tech is something they support and they have become friendly with…
“I think another is you have bipartisan agreement, [many] Republicans and Democrats agree that Big Tech is too big… and needs to be reformed. I think we are just approaching it from a different angle.
“We don’t want them to be a monopoly, but we don’t want them to be unfair and go after the people’s free speech rights. I think the left is arguing, yes they are a monopoly, but we want them to go after people’s free speech rights who we don’t agree with. That is the difference. [The left] want[s] them to crack down more on Republicans and conservatives, and we want [Big Tech] to let everyone speak.”
On Unidentified Aerial Phenomena:
“I don't know what they are. I don't think the Navy or the intelligence community knows what it is. I think the point is you are never going to find out if you don't start looking.
“For many years it was just being ignored… Look, we don't need a report to tell us it’s a national security threat. It’s flying over restricted airspace, and it isn’t ours.”