2016 presidential candidate and Florida Sen. Marco Rubio said just one day ago that if government employees are not doing their jobs, they should be fired.
I think we can all agree. But that might mean that Rubio should be among those getting canned.
This is a Reality Check you won’t get anywhere else.
“All we are saying in this bill is that if you work at the VA and you aren’t doing your job, they get to fire you,” Rubio said on the floor of the Senate. “I think people are probably shocked that that doesn’t exist in the entire government since there is really no other job in the country where if you don’t do your job, you don’t get fired.”
The only problem? When he says people in government should be fired for not doing their jobs, he’s probably not talking about himself. But should he?
Remember when Donald Trump tweeted that Rubio had one of the worst voting records in the senate, calling him lazy? Being a senator is more than just voting, so we’re not going to call him lazy. But one of the worst voting records?
Trump is right.
Senator Rubio, who is still just a freshman senator, has one of the worst voting records in the senate. How bad is it?
According to GovTrack, from January 2011 to October 2015, Rubio missed 165 of 1,423 roll call votes, which is 11.6 percent. This is much worse than the median of 1.6 percent among the lifetime records of senators currently serving. But as the year has gone on, Rubio’s record is getting worse.
This month, he has missed 87 percent of the votes cast. In fact, this speech about government employees is only one vote he has been present for this month.
In fact, just weeks ago on CNBC, Rubio defended missing all those votes, saying, “I am going to miss votes. I am running for president.”
But senator, you weren’t elected to run for president. You were elected to help govern. And by the way, there are four other senators who are also running for president this election cycle—Rand Paul, Bernie Sanders, Ted Cruz, and Lindsey Graham—and all of them, according to PolitiFact, have better voting records than Rubio.
According to those numbers, Rubio has missed 29.1 percent of his votes between January 1 and September 16. During that same period, Cruz was absent for 23.4 percent, and Graham absent for 22.6 percent. None of which are good numbers. But look at Sanders, who has missed only 3.4 percent, and the best record, Paul, who has missed only four votes, or 1.5 percent.
So what you need to know about Rubio’s voting record is that not only is it terrible—not only has he missed almost 30 percent of the votes he was supposed to be present for this year—but his excuse, that he missed those votes because he is running for president, doesn’t hold water.
Why? Because almost 30 percent or one third of all his missed votes in 2015 were missed before he announced he was running for president.
And according to the Washington Post, even after announcing, on 15 of 34 days he missed votes since his campaign began, it’s not clear what Rubio was doing for his campaign because he wasn’t at a public event.
Yes, senator, you are correct—Washington is the only place where people can simply not do their jobs and have no fear of losing them. Too bad votes have forgotten that they have the power to change that when it comes to those who are elected to serve.
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