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Politics / Issues

Pence, Rubio Speak At Tampa GOP Fundraiser

Both Republican vice presidential candidate Mike Pence and U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio appeared in Tampa over the weekend at the Florida GOP Victory 2016  fundraising dinner. 

Indiana Gov. Pence talked about how a Hillary Clinton presidency would change the country. How it would change the makeup of the Supreme Court  for generations. How it would enshrine Obamacare forever. He said despite all the talk about Donald Trump's comments about women, there is a great hunger out there for change.  

"This is movement of the American people, who know we can be stronger at home and abroad," he said, "who know we can be more prosperous, who know we can stand on our Constitutional principles that made this nation great, and in short it's a movement of the American people who know we can make America great again. And this movement is going to carry forward - despite the opposition."

Pence gave a well-received speech to the crowd of about 650 people Saturday night in the Tampa downtown Hilton.

"This is a choice of whether we're going to continue to go downhill with the policies that have weakened America's place in the world, stifled America's economy, walked away from our most cherished traditions and our highest ideals in public life," he said, "or whether we as a people are going to stop, turn our faces like flint against the wind, plant our feet and turn around and march back up the hill to a stronger, more prosperous America, built on our most cherished Constitutional ideals. That's the choice we have, Florida."

This was the first time Florida Sen. Rubio took the stage at the same event with anyone from the Trump campaign. But during his 34-minute speech, he didn't mention the word "Trump" one single time.

"That's what these elections are about: for we will not leave our children better off than ourselves if we keep doing what we're doing now," he said, speaking about 40 minutes after Pence. "If we keep spending money we don't have. If we keep growing our government beyond it's proper bounds. If we keep weakening our defenses, if we lose our moral clarity and our moral leadership on this planet. Then the America your children will inherit will still be an important country - and in many ways a successful one - but no longer a special one."

Credit Steve Newborn / WUSF News
Sen. Marco Rubio poses with Congressional candidate Christine Quinn

Rubio spoke about American exceptionalism, and how a Hillary Clinton victory could change the makeup of the Supreme Court - and the country - for generations.

"Imagine a Supreme Court with at least five people who believe the Constitution means whatever you want it to mean," he said. "Not what the people who wrote it meant, but what you want it to mean. You know what happens when Constitutions turn into something like that? They don't mean anything. That alone is reason to not want someone like (New York Sen.) Chuck Shumer as the majority leader of the United States Senate, and Florida is critical in insuring that does not happen."  

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