This AJT column is part of a series giving a supporter of each of the remaining presidential candidates a chance to pitch the Jewish community on that candidate. Read the others here.
By Jeff Kunkes
Six presidential cycles ago a young, vibrant and glamorous political outsider challenged a career politician for the White House. He appealed to both young and old, and for the next eight years there was a prosperity in the country despite having a Republican Congress and a Democratic president.
Taxes were lowered, money repatriated, welfare rolls cut, and work-for-welfare rules were adopted. Our obligations overseas were properly overseen with the bombing of Kosovo leading the way for NATO to end a long, dangerous war in the Balkans.
Now we are having a repeat of the same scenario, except there is no Bill Clinton but Marco Rubio.
Marco in a short time has filled an impressive résumé as the youngest president of the state Senate in Florida, overseeing a prosperous economy, and more than five years as a U.S. senator with an expertise in foreign policy. His time in the Senate is two more years than President Barack Obama had when he ran for higher office in 2008 and only a little more than two years less than Hillary Clinton has to her credit.
Marco’s complete record is easily attainable online, but there are several points that need to be repeated.
He is the American dream personified. He comes from a family of Cuban immigrants, and Marco is well acquainted with the Spanish/Latino community. He speaks fluent Spanish and has a knowledge of the immigration problems that only an immigrant can fully understand.
He can work across the aisles and worked to try to institute the DREAM Act for children and a path to legality for undocumented workers. This has won him high grades for compromise, extremely important for any leader of this country.
Whatever side of the divide you are on, it is a fact that Obamacare is losing money, and the insurance companies are bailing out of its programs rapidly. Obama and the Democrats wanted public money to bail out the insurance plans on a program that is already well above budget and has not come close to lowering the predicted number of uninsured in this country. Marco sponsored and got passed legislation that prevented more tax money being spent to keep afloat insurance companies that were trying to corner the market by underbidding.
America has the highest corporate tax rate in the world, and there are trillions of American dollars abroad that will not be repatriated until the laws have changed. That money could pay down debt, create jobs and make better infrastructure.
Marco and the Republicans want to bring that money home to work for us by lowering the corporate rate, the exact opposite of Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders, whose only response is to increase punishing business taxation. So we are left seeing the money sitting in foreign banks and American companies establishing overseas offices to avoid this crushing tax rate.
Most important for our community, Marco is a champion of Israel and standing firm against Iran getting nuclear weapons. He has sponsored more sanctions against Hezbollah and wants to increase our commitment against ISIS terrorism, not play second string to Russia’s Middle East power play.
So if you are part of the 60 percent of the Jewish community that made up its mind 40 to 50 years ago to only vote Democratic no matter what, please feel free to skip to another section of the paper. But if you feel that all lives matter, that we are not all victims, that identity politics is damaging to the national morale, and that new solutions are needed to crippling problems, please check out Marco and read more on his website.
The primary is coming, and this is an opportunity to jump aboard the train of a proven, accomplished leader who can cross the aisle and may actually deliver hope and change.