News & Politics

Rubio's Chronic Absenteeism on 9-11 Committee

The Washington Post is reporting that Marco Rubio’s attendance problems weren’t limited to votes on defense issues in the U.S. Senate.  He also missed most of the post-9-11 Select Committee on Security.  This was an especially important committee in Tallahassee considering that some of the 9-11 hijackers had scored Florida driver’s licenses.

He skipped nearly half of the meetings over the first five months of the panel’s existence, more than any of his colleagues, according to Florida legislature records. He missed hours of expert testimony and was absent for more than 20 votes — prompting the state House speaker who had given him the assignment to express concern, the committee’s chairman said.

When Rubio did attend meetings, he voiced opposition to measures to track foreigners inside the United States. Again, the Washington Post:

At times, Rubio befuddled his colleagues, both Democrats and Republicans. After apologizing for arriving late to a debate in February 2002 about a proposed system to track foreign students, Rubio argued passionately that the proposal would unfairly target law-abiding immigrants, such as those who’d entered the country as refugees or to seek political asylum.

Rubio eventually capitulated. Rubio has faced criticism for his absenteeism in the United States Senate.  Jeb Bush told Rubio in one debate, “You should be showing up for work.”