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Florida Leaders Renew Calls for Sen. Rubio to Pull His Support of Donald Trump

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Community leaders say Rubio’s endorsement of Trump is disqualifying

Community leaders this weekend called on U.S. Senate candidate Marco Rubio to finally pull his support of Donald Trump after a tape of the GOP Presidential nominee making lewd remarks was released on Friday. While many Florida Republicans, including Rubio, have expressed their personal disgust at the candidate’s latest remarks, Rubio remains a supporter of Trump’s candidacy.

This election, voters will have to decide whether Donald Trump and Marco Rubio will represent them. By endorsing Trump in the first place – after Trump had demonstrated a jaw-dropping array of evidence that he is unfit for the presidency – Rubio is calling into question his own judgment and fitness to serve. Rubio stood on the stage when Trump made some of his most outrageous statements during the Republican primaries, yet still wants him to be President of the United States.

“For over a year, Republicans like Marco Rubio have, in supporting Donald Trump, embraced his extreme and offensive views against women, people of color and just about anyone else who has disagreed with him,” said Moné Holder, North Florida Regional Director for New Florida Majority. “You cannot expect a man who engages in such rhetoric to push for policies that are going to protect, support and empower women.”

“As a woman and an elected official it embarrasses and disgusts me that one of our presidential nominees has degraded women and said comments which could be considered sexual assault,” said Viviana Janer, Chairwoman of the Osceola County Commission. “All women and any man that respects the women in his life has to seriously question their support for Donald Trump. That includes Marco Rubio, who should immediately consider pulling his endorsement of him as our president.”

Women across the state stressed the seriousness of the recently released tapes and said that Trump’s past actions and comments toward women presented a pattern that went beyond just being un-Presidential.

“Donald Trump is trying to dismiss his comments as ‘locker-room talk.’ Let me be clear, he is bragging about sexually assaulting women, and claiming that his wealth entitles him to our bodies,” said FLIC Votes board member Karla de Anda. “These are the words of a sexual predator, and anyone who continues to stand with him is condoning violence against women.”

“Trump’s latest words and his behavior up until now cannot just be labeled as harmless banter or ‘boys being boys.’ They are powerful words that have been used by countless sexual abusers to harm and justify the unwanted groping, grabbing and touching of women and young girls” said Marcia Olivo of the Miami Workers Center, herself a survivor of sexual abuse. “Trump shows all the signs of a sexual predator and displays none of the qualities of a President that a generation of young men and women should have to look up to and depend on.”

With less than a month left to the general election, many leaders say that Rubio’s inability to stand up to Trump and for the people of Florida should be considered as voters head to the polls.

“It doesn’t surprise me that Marco Rubio still supports a disgraceful [candidate] like Donald Trump,” said Maria Bilbao of United Families. “If he betrayed us with immigration reform, why should we believe that he wouldn’t do the same with issues that are so important to the women of this state. I hope that he continues to support Donald Trump so that he can politically sink under the weight of his decisions.”

“The fact that Sen. Rubio has waited this long to consider dropping his support of Donald Trump should be reason enough not to send him back to Washington,” said Elbert Garcia, State Director of Florida’s Voice. “We need leaders who are going to make tough decisions when they first present themselves, not when it is politically expedient.”