Presidential races

Christie: Rubio ‘should have shown up’ for spending vote

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Gov. Chris Christie (R-N.J.) criticized Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) on Tuesday for missing a vote last week on a government-funding bill that he opposed.

“Senator Rubio said he was opposed to it, yet he did not show up to speak on the floor,” he said on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.” “He didn’t show up to cast his vote.”

{mosads}“You say you oppose spending but do nothing about it,” the White House hopeful continued. “You have to figure out ways to do it.

“He should have shown up on the floor and made his case to his colleagues against that bill if he was so opposed to it — he didn’t.”

“That should tell people something about the kind of effective leader someone might be. That is a huge substantive difference between the two of us.”

Christie said his experience as governor gives him an advantage over many of his rivals in the Republican presidential race.

“When you’re governor of New Jersey, [if] you don’t like spending, you use the line-item veto and you line-item it out and you make the argument to people,” he said. “You show up and get the job done.”

Rubio defended his absence from the Senate last week, which came as lawmakers approved a $1.8 trillion spending and tax package.

“In essence, not voting for it is a vote against it, although my position in it is clear, because they needed my vote to get it passed to get to 60 votes because of the Senate rules,” Rubio said on Dec. 18.

“I want the work in Washington to be productive on behalf of the American people. That will require me to be away for some time while I’m campaigning, but I intend to win this race so these votes will matter again.”

Rubio has frequently dismissed critics who allege he is shirking his Senate duties in lieu of an Oval Office bid. The Florida lawmaker has missed more than half of the Senate’s votes since October.

Christie’s admonishment of Rubio follows similar rebukes from Sens. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) and Ted Cruz (R-Texas) last week. Both Republican White House hopefuls voted against the spending bill, as did Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), a Democratic contender.

Tags Chris Christie Congress Marco Rubio Politics spending votes

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