Republican Governance

Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Florida, heads to the Senate floor for a vote on July 9, 2014. (Photo by Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

This is how it goes:

At the recent CPAC gathering, Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), a likely Republican presidential candidate, seemed to stumble on one of the basic facts of the Middle East. “The reason Obama hasn’t put in place a military strategy to defeat ISIS is because he doesn’t want to upset Iran,” the Florida Republican said.

"@JohnKerry takes @marcorubio to school ok Iran nuke talks not linked to Iran ISIS war strategy at foreign relations session" (Andrea Mitchell/@mitchellreports, 11 March 2015, via Twitter)The senator seemed confused. In reality, President Obama has put an anti-ISIS military strategy in place, and that’s fine with Iran, since Iran and ISIS are enemies.

I’d hoped that Rubio just misspoke, or had been briefed poorly but an aide, but apparently not―at a Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing this afternoon, the far-right Floridian continued to push this strange theory, pressing Secretary of State John Kerry on the point. “I believe that much of our strategy with regards to ISIS is being driven by a desire not to upset Iran so they don’t walk away from the negotiating table on the deal that you’re working on,” Rubio said. “Tell me why I’m wrong.”

And so, Kerry told him why he’s wrong.

(Benen)

The emerging theme of Republican congressional governance seems to be a downward spiral. And yes, this one just tumbles from there.

____________________

Image note: Top―Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Florida, heads to the Senate floor for a vote on July 9, 2014. (Photo by Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call) Right―Tweet from Andrea Mitchell of msnbc, 11 March 2015: “@JohnKerry takes @marcorubio to school ok Iran nuke talks not linked to Iran ISIS war strategy at foreign relations session”.

Benen, Steve. “Kerry teaches Rubio the basics about the Middle East”. msnbc. 11 March 2015.

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