Tag Archives: Pat Toomey

Marco Rubio’s amazing maiden speech in the US Senate

Florida Senator Marco Rubio
Florida Senator Marco Rubio

Human events reported on Florida Senator Marco Rubio’s first speech on the floor of the US Senate today, and it was AWESOME. (H/T Kathleen McKinley)

Full story:

Freshman Florida Republican Senator Marco Rubio delivered his maiden speech on the floor of the Senate yesterday and it was a speech all GOP presidential contenders should watch.

It was the best speech of the 2012 presidential cycle, except the person who delivered it has all but ruled himself off of the 2012 ticket on numerous occasions.

The GOP presidential field has been criticized for not having passion or conviction, and Rubio’s speech lit up the normally staid Senate chamber to the extent that this is possible. It had a clear argument, an emotional arc, personal tie-ins, and was delivered with conviction. Too often, even in the GOP, politicians talk about American exceptionalism as if it is an academic exercise.

Not Rubio.

Rubio owned it, his words personified it, and his speech was delivered in a way that led one who was watching to to think Rubio was humbled and still awed at America’s exceptional past and promise.

As Republicans learned in 2008, words and stories matter. It draws a public who does not get caught up in the drudgery of modern American politics in to care about the democratic process.
Add in the fact that Rubio is young and a minority, which are the two groups Republicans do most poorly with, and the speech and the messenger become even more dynamic, compelling, symbolic and important.

Rubio said he came “from a hard working and humble family” that “was neither wealthy nor connected,” but that he “grew up blessed in two important ways:” He had a strong and stable family and was born in America.

He realized that “America is not perfect” and “ti took a bloody civil war to free over 4 million African Americans who lived enslaved … and it would take another hundred years after that before they found true equality under the law.”

Rubio then movingly talked about how people who came to give their children a better life contributed to an “American miracle.”

He spoke of how a “16-year-old boy from Sweden, who spoke no English and had only five dollars in his pocket, was able to save and open a shoe store,” and “today, that store, Nordstrom is a multi-billion dollar global retail giant.”

He spoke of a “a young couple with no money and no business experience decided to start a toy business out of the garage of their home, and, “today, that company, Mattel, is one of the world’s largest toy manufacturers”

He spoke of the “French-born son of Iranian parents created a website called AuctionWeb in the living room of his home,” and, “today, that website now called eBay stands as a testament to the familiar phrase, ‘Only in America.'”

Rubio then talked movingly of the American dream and personified it by putting faces on the dream.

He said it was “story of the people who cleaned our office last night” who work hard so they can send their kids to college.”

He said it was “the story of the people who served your lunch today” who “work hard so that one day their children will have the chance to own a business.”

He said, in a reference to his father, the American Dream was also the “story of a bartender and a maid in Florida, whose son now serves here in this Senate, and who proudly gives his testimony as a firsthand witness of the greatness of this land.”

He then pivoted and said while “most great powers have used their strength to conquer other nations” America “is different” for America, “power also came with a sense that to those that much is given, much is expected.”

Rubio said that America’s greatness can be found anywhere in the world, “when someone uses a mobile phone, email, the Internet, or GPS” or “when a bone marrow, lung or heart transplant saves a life.”

Rubio then talked about how he “grew up in the 1980s, a time when it was morning in America” and that the 1980s, like the American century, faced challenges and triumphs but it was a “century where American political, economic and cultural exceptionalism made the world a more prosperous and peaceful place.”

He spoke of how the country is headed toward the wrong direct and that “we do stand now at a turning point in our history, one where there are only two ways forward for us. We will either bring on another American century, or we are doomed to witness America’s decline.”

Rubio said that since “every single one of us is the descendant of a go-getter,” “of dreamers and believers,” and “of men and women who took risk and made sacrifices because they wanted to leave their children better off than themselves” that “we are all the descendants of the men and women who built the nation that changed the world” whether “hey came here on the Mayflower, a slave ship, or on an airplane from Havana.”

Rubio then quoted John F. Kennedy about how America is the “watchmen on the walls of world freedom” and asked if America declined, “who will serve as living proof that liberty, security, and prosperity are all possible together,” or “lead the fight to confront and defeat radical Islam that “abuses and oppresses women, has no tolerance for other faiths and seeks to impose its views on the whole world,” or stand up for children who “are used as soldiers and trafficked as slaves?”

Rubio asked, if America declines, “who will create the innovations of the 21st century?”

He answered that nobody will because “there is still no nation or institution in the world willing or able to do what we have done.”

“Now, some say that we can no longer afford the price we must pay to keep America’s light shining,” Rubio said. “Others say that there are new shining cities that will soon replace us.”

“I say they are both wrong,” Rubio emphatically said because the world “still needs America,” “still needs our light,” and “still needs another American century” and “with God’s help, that will be our legacy to our children and to the world.”

You can watch the video here. The full transcript is here. READ THE WHOLE THING if you can’t watch the video.

You’ll recall that this blog has been a strong supporter of Marco Rubio since the day he announced his candidacy. He, along with Michele Bachmann, Paul Ryan, Allen West and Jim Demint, are my favorite Republicans. I’m probably forgetting some, but those are the ones that come to mind. I think if I had to choose someone who best matched my views across the board, that would be Michele Bachmann. But Marco Rubio best matches my personal story, and my opinion of the United States of America.

Here’s my post on the day he won the seat: Marco Rubio wins Florida Senate race – first tea party senator!

And here’s my post on the day he announced he was running: Conservative Marco Rubio announces for Florida Senate seat.

He will be a great Senator. And some day, maybe he’ll be even more. IFYKWIMAITYD.

 

Republicans introduce national right-to-work legislation

Sen. James Demint

From the Hill.

Excerpt:

Eight Republican Senators introduced a bill Tuesday giving workers a choice as to whether to join labor unions, which they argue will boost the nation’s economy and provide an increase in wages.

Sen. Jim DeMint (R-S.C.), introduced the National Right to Work Act to “reduce workplace discrimination by protecting the free choice of individuals to form, join, or assist labor organizations, or to refrain from such activities,” according to a statement.

Seven other Republicans signed onto the effort: Sens. Tom Coburn (Okla.), Orrin Hatch (Utah), Mike Lee (Utah), Rand Paul (Ky.), James Risch (Idaho), Pat Toomey (Pa.) and David Vitter (La.).

“Facing a steady decline in membership, unions have turned to strong-arm political tactics to make forced unionization the default position of every American worker, even if they don’t want it,” Hatch said. “This is simply unacceptable. At the very least, it should be the policy of the U.S. government to ensure that no employee will be forced to join a union in order to get or keep their job.

“Republicans cited a recent poll they said shows that 80 percent of union members support having their policy and that “Right to Work” states outperform “forced-union” states in factors that affect worker well being.

From 2000 to 2008, about 4.7 million Americans moved from forced-union to right to work states and a recent study found that there is “a very strong and highly statistically significant relationship between right-to-work laws and economic growth,” and that from 1977 to 2007, right-to-work states experienced a 23 percent faster growth in per capita income than states with forced unionization.

“To see the negative impacts of forced unionization, look no further than the struggling businesses in states whose laws allow it,” Vitter said. “It can’t be a coincidence that right-to-work states have on balance grown in population over the last 10 years, arguably at the expense of heavy union-favoring states.”

DeMint blamed the problems faced by U.S. automakers on the unions.

“Forced-unionism helped lead to GM and Chrysler’s near bankruptcy and their requests for government bailouts as they struggled to compete in a global marketplace,” he said. “When American businesses suffer because of these anti-worker laws, jobs and investment are driven overseas.”

If you want to attract businesses, then you need to have pro-business laws. That’s where jobs come from – businesses.

Here’s an article about states who are trying to pass these laws to attract more employers.

Excerpt:

Currently 14 states beyond Indiana and Wisconsin are considering legislation that would limit union benefits and/or collective bargaining power. They are: Alaska, Hawaii, Maine, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, New Hampshire, New Mexico, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia, Washington (state) and West Virginia. In any number of these states, supporters have planned or held rallies against the measures. But public support might be less than deep. According to a Rasmussen Poll conducted late last week and released Monday, 48 percent of likely U.S. voters sided with Wisconsin Governor Walker whereas only 38 percent sided with his union opponents; the other 14 percent were undecided. And 50 percent of the respondents favored reducing their home state’s government payroll by one percent a year for 10 years either by reducing the work force or reducing their pay. Only 28 percent opposed such action.

This is how we are going to turn the recession around. Cut off the spending on left-wing special interests – NPR, PBS, ACORN, Planned Parenthood, Unions. They all will have to pay their own way, just like the grown-ups do.

Marco Rubio wins Florida Senate race – first tea party senator!

Florida Senator Marco Rubio
Florida Senator Marco Rubio

Here’s the story on Marco Rubio’s landslide victory in the Florida Senate race.

Excerpt:

MARCO RUBIO, REPUBLICAN

An attorney, the 39-year-old Miami native served as speaker of the Florida House and became a rising star in the GOP as a fiscal conservative.

Born to Cuban immigrants, Rubio began his career in public service as a city commissioner in West Miami and entered the Florida House at age 29. Within eight years he ascended from a representative seated by special election to majority whip, majority leader and eventually House speaker.

Fiscal conservatism is the cornerstone of Rubio’s philosophy. He says controlling the national debt and paring government entitlement programs are the most important things lawmakers can accomplish. Rubio wants to reinstate tax cuts for the wealthy enacted under President George W. Bush in 2001 and 2003, slash corporate taxes and eliminate taxes on capital gains and dividend profits. He also supports eliminating the estate tax.

In the Republican primary for the Senate, Rubio initially trailed Gov. Charlie Crist by 30 points. The national GOP quickly embraced Crist, but Rubio overtook him with substantial tea party support. Twice he set records for the most lucrative three-month fundraising periods for a Senate race in Florida, collecting $4.5 million and $5 million, respectively. Crist, meanwhile, turned to a bid as an independent.

Rubio lives in West Miami with his wife, Jeanette, and four children.

Now, we finally get to remove the “to-be” from his blogroll entry which I put there the day he announced he was running for Senate. Mr. Rubio is 39 years old. He’s a star now, and he’s going to go far!

Another tea party senator also won in Kentucky – Rand Paul.

Excerpt:

KENTUCKY:

RAND PAUL, REPUBLICAN

The 47-year-old eye doctor tapped into tea party fervor with a fiercely antiestablishment message. He has strong family ties to politics — his father is Republican Rep. Ron Paul of Texas, a former presidential candidate and libertarian icon.

Quiet and intense, Rand Paul railed against government bailouts and deficit spending in promoting low taxes and limited government. He’s also personally frugal, according to friends who say he mows the lawn at his home in a gated community and shops the Internet for cheap golf shoes.

Paul was born in Pennsylvania, grew up in Texas and settled in Bowling Green, a college town near his wife’s hometown, about 20 years ago. He runs his own ophthalmology practice.

Paul attended Baylor University but left early without a bachelor’s degree for medical school at Duke University. He helped create a certification group for ophthalmologists after objecting to a powerful medical group’s policy.

Paul and his wife, Kelley, have three sons. He has coached youth baseball, soccer and basketball, and his family attends a Presbyterian church, where his wife is a deacon.

He’s only 47 years old!

We also have more new senators in Ohio (Rob Portman), Pennsylvania (Pat Toomey), New Hampshire (Kelly Ayotte), Indiana (Dan Coats), Wisconsin (Ron Johnson), North Dakota (John Hoeven).