No matter who sits in the oval office after November 8th the last person Democrats want in the Senate for the next six years is Florida Senator Marco Rubio.
And not just because the former presidential hopeful’s experience, likability, and superior oratorical skills make him an automatic presidential contender in the next election. In fact, in the here and now Rubio represents a significant barrier between Democrats and the progressive agenda they intend to push in the next legislative session.
In a place like the United States Senate, where traditions and procedural rules are meant to gum up the works to some degree for the majority party, Rubio’s presence there will be trouble for Democrats regardless of whether or not his party maintains control, and should he be re-elected, his abilities as a grizzled veteran rather than a freshman senator will only increase.
Just consider what the first term senator has already accomplished in whittling away the shaky foundations of the Affordable Care Act.
Rubio wasn’t in the Senate when Obamacare passed, but the Florida Senator has more than done his part to expose the bill for the fraud that it is. Of Rubio’s behind the scenes efforts to undermine the ACA, the New York Times wrote in December 2015, “for all the Republican talk about dismantling the Affordable Care Act, one [then] Republican presidential hopeful has done something toward achieving that goal.”
Rubio did this by playing a key role in the introduction of what the Times called a “little-noticed healthcare provision slipped into a giant spending law” in 2014. This provision ended up undermining a key financing mechanism, the so-called “risk corridor provision” that was supposed to help prop up insurance companies that would naturally incur losses by taking less money from premiums combined with being forced to take on more sick people.
Because of Senator Rubio’s “quiet legislative sabotage,” which boils down to effectively stopping what he calls a “taxpayer-funded bailout for insurance companies,” the Obama administration will pay only 13 percent of what insurance companies were expecting to receive in 2016. The consequences to Obamacare? A monumental surge in premiums and, according to the liberal Times, “rattled confidence in the durability of President Obama’s signature health law.”
No wonder President Obama is single-handedly trying to come to the rescue of Rubio’s opponent, Democratic Rep. Patrick Murphy, making two trips to Florida in just the past eight days, according to Politico. Obama has unleashed several recent broadsides against Rubio, criticizing everything from the Florida Senator’s withdrawal of support from comprehensive immigration reform to his continued, if tepid, endorsement of Donald Trump.
In truth, Rubio doesn’t have to accept the Republican nominee’s flaws to understand the clear and present danger a Hillary Clinton presidency represents. And the grace and political savvy with which he has walked that very difficult line speaks well of Rubio’s character, loyalty, and respect for the Republican electorate that voted for Trump in record numbers.
Marco Rubio’s decision to run for reelection to the Senate after all was a shot in the arm for Republicans who looked unlikely to retain the seat otherwise. Should the people of Florida see fit to keep him there, you can bet that, should she manage to win, Hillary Clinton’s agenda will suffer greatly as a result.
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