Rubio Humiliates Himself With Friday Trump Defense

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The list of Republican Senators who’ve publicly given themselves up to President Donald Trump’s brazen corruption keeps getting longer. Now, Florida’s Marco Rubio — who was a 2016 Republican presidential primary contender against Trump — has jumped in the mix with an outrageous new argument. He says that although the president may have endangered national security by trying to bribe Ukraine into helping him win the 2020 election — that supposedly doesn’t mean that Trump should actually be convicted at the end of his Senate trial and removed from office. Where on earth is the bar for these people? Why would he vote to remove someone from office, if not brazenly acknowledged, duly documented guilt?

After throwing out the nonsense but favorite Republican argument that “a partisan impeachment is exactly what the House produced,” Rubio insisted:

‘The sole purpose of this extraordinary power to remove the one person entrusted with all of the powers of an entire branch of government is to provide a last-resort remedy to protect the country… Just because actions meet a standard of impeachment does not mean it is in the best interest of the country to remove a President from office.’

So he’s explicitly and straightforwardly playing politics, then.

As he continued:

‘Determining which outcome is in the best interests requires a political judgment — one that takes into account both the severity of the wrongdoing alleged but also the impact removal would have on the nation.’

He’s just being brazen about his deference to Trump and the president’s most fervent supporters now, and in so doing, he’s essentially giving some justification to the argument that Trump impeachment defense lawyer Alan Dershowitz shocked observers with recently.

Dershowitz told the Senate trial crowd:

‘If a president does something which he believes will help him get elected in the public interest, that cannot be the kind of quid pro quo that results in impeachment.’

In other words, like Rubio, Dershowitz argued that the political ramifications should be considered when examining the president’s conduct — and like Dershowitz, Rubio has jumped right on in with the argument that in this case, the political ramifications mean that Trump should walk away scot-free, without a conviction. Rubio argued that convicting Trump would “inflict extraordinary and potentially irreparable damage to our already divided nation” — so, is he pursuing some other campaign to hold the president in check? Nope.

Few observers exactly thought that there was ever some chance that Rubio might decide to vote for either hearing from witnesses at the trial or convicting the president at the end of it. Rubio has long made his Republican Party allegiance clear, even while Trump sits at the helm of it.

As this week drew to a close, the Senators that observers were watching all made their decisions about witnesses public, ensuring that when the vote did happen, there would not be a majority in favor of hearing out their testimony. Sens. Lisa Murkowski (Alaska) and Lamar Alexander (Tenn.) announced that they’d oppose hearing from witnesses, while Mitt Romney (Utah) and Susan Collins (Maine) announced the opposite.