Rubio: Political Process Has ‘Not Solved One Single Major Issue’ in Last 4 years

By Edwin Mora | May 24, 2012 | 5:47 PM EDT

( -- Senator Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) said the political process in place during the last three to four years has failed to solve any of the major issues facing the nation, in remarks on Wednesday at the Latino Coalition Small Business Summit, hosted by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce in Washington, D.C.

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"The exact same issues we were facing two years ago, we still face today.  This nation and this political process has not solved one single major issue in the last three-and-a-half to four years," said Rubio. "In fact, it's been incapable of even passing a budget. The single largest organization in the world, a $3.8 trillion endeavor called the United States federal government has not had a budget in almost four years."

The Florida senator went on to express frustration with what he indicated is a do-nothing Senate, for which he was elected to serve in November 2010.

"Our political system is broken, you've heard that so many times before," he said.  "It bears repeating. I ran because I was frustrated by the political process. Nothing has happened over the last year and a half to change that frustration, unfortunately."

"Too often, times in the United States Senate especially, most of the votes we take are nothing but messaging points," said Rubio.  "Bills are brought to the floor -- that people know we're not going to pass -- for one purpose alone, and that's to give people talking points on the Sunday evening shows."

Senator Marco Rubio (R-Fla.). (AP Photo)

"Our people deserve better," he said. "It's not like we don't have major issues to confront, but they are not being confronted. The only thing that's being done in the Senate these days is creating material for television commercials in the fall, and it's sad."

"There's a lack of urgency too," continued Rubio, who is a potential vice presidential running mate for Mitt Romney, the presumptive Republican presidential nominee. "No one seems in a hurry here to solve anything. There's this notion that somehow things will just solve themselves, that we can wait one more election. We can get away with a few more months. We can't. These issues will not solve themselves.

Rubio pointed out that his senate colleagues have failed to solve the same problems that were afflicting the nation two years ago.

He added that, even "more sinister" than a Senate that does not address the issues affecting Americans, is the lack of debate among lawmakers and the finger-pointing that goes on instead.

"There's something even more sinister that's crept into the political process and it's something that actually asks us to abandon the essence of who we've always been as a people and as a nation," he said.

Senate Majority leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.), right, accompanied by Sen. Charles Schumer, (D-NY). (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

"It starts with this argument that no longer, and too often in politics today, do people even want to engage debate on the issues anymore. It's no longer about debating a jobs plan or tax plans or regulatory plans," said Rubio. "They skip straight to trying to convince you that it's not their ideas that are bad -- they are bad, that your political opponents are bad people. That you shouldn't even listen to them because somehow they don't care about you or any of us, all they are is selfish people that care about themselves. And it is impossible for this republic to function if people refuse to debate ideas and instead skip straight to the direct defamation of their political opponents. And that's now being celebrated. That's now being encouraged."

Rubio further said, "It's now a mark of how good you are in politics if you're willing to do that and the more outrageous you're willing to be, the more attention you get for it. And this is not about hurting anyone's feelings. This is about the fact that we will never solve the issues that we face if all people want to do is debate how bad the other guy is as opposed to debate whether their ideas have merit or not and whether your ideas are better than their ideas."