Commentary Magazine


Rubio Makes Eloquent Plea About War in Libya

Earlier, I commended Tim Pawlenty for staking out a principled position for a strong foreign policy that puts him at odds with the growing isolationist sentiment in Republican ranks. Another honorable exception to the general, dreary trend is Sen. Marco Rubio, the great right hope from Florida.

He gave a first-rate speech today on the Senate floor about the war in Libya. He rightly castigated Obama for his mistakes in waging this conflict, ranging from the president’s failure to ask Congress for approval in the beginning to his persistent refusal to use enough force to bring Qaddafi down. But, he went on to argue:

No matter how you may feel about the original decision, we must now deal with the situation as it now stands. And the bottom line here is that if we withdraw from our air war over Libya, it will lengthen the conflict, increase its cost to American taxpayers, and raise doubts about U.S. leadership among friends and foes alike.

Thus, he made an eloquent plea for Republicans to swallow their anger against Obama and act in the best interests of the country by rejecting attempts to hamstring the war effort. He is exactly right—and almost alone on Capitol Hill where too many of his fellow Republicans seem to have more interest in bringing down Obama than Qaddafi.

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