During a town hall discussion last night, Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School shooting survivor Cameron Casky asked Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) if he would stop accepting campaign donations from the NRA.
“Can you tell me right now that you will not accept a single donation from the NRA?” Casky asked Rubio. Amidst thunderous applause, Rubio issued a drawn-out, almost non-answer.
The video is below:
Florida school shooting survivor Cameron Kasky challenges Sen. Marco Rubio: "Can you tell me right now that you will not accept a single donation from the NRA?" https://t.co/LiU42QFBEv #StudentsStandUp https://t.co/p6jlUGFxOs
— CNN (@CNN) February 22, 2018
Many on social media immediately criticized Rubio.
NRA money? Who said anything about NRA money…. pic.twitter.com/Yr3j4wzvon
— Ed Carmona 💬 (@edcarmonajr) February 22, 2018
“People buy into my agenda, and I do support the second amendment,” Rubio said. “And I do support the right of you and everyone here to be able to go to school and be safe.”
— Hung, (@hungdung101) February 22, 2018
But Casky did not let up. Poised and focused, he asked if, “in the names of 17 people, you can’t ask the NRA to keep the money out of your campaign?”What came next was stunning.
Wow these kids are cutting straight to the chase I bet Sen Rubio wishes he had stayed home tonight
— Gloria Howder (@sballnana) February 22, 2018
“I will always accept the help of anyone who agrees with my agenda,” a visibly uncomfortable Rubio stated.
He shouldn't take any money from the NRA
— Teresa ❤️🇺🇸💙 (@teresa3llen) February 22, 2018
“You could say no,” Casky quipped.
Rubio when asked if he wouldn’t accept bucks from NRA pic.twitter.com/CyUUKMA8Lb
— Brandon Horan (@brandon_r_horan) February 22, 2018
In his response, Rubio also said that he believes “influence in these groups comes not from money. The influences come from the millions of people that agree with the agenda.”
Did he seriously just say “influence does not come from money”?
That’s one of the worst lies I’ve heard in a while.
— brad (@bradwellman) February 22, 2018
Rubio looked really uncomfortable the entire time, especially while uttering “one the worst lies I’ve heard in a while,” Brad tweeted.
It's hard to contain the emotion when the red party sells out the country to line their wallets on the blood of its children as they sit in school.
— Wasteland Warrior (@mslonsky) February 22, 2018
Simply put, Rubio answered the question, but not in the way Casky or his colleagues would have liked. His words seem to be slowly orbiting a black hole of “no.”
He never answered the question😒
— A’ria (@iChooseHapi) February 22, 2018
Although some people thought he answered the question.
Not sure what you guys listened to, but he clearly answered the question 4 or 5 times that he will take donations. People/NRA buy into what his views on policies are. He’s pro the 2nd amendment. It’s called politics.
— Dan Hepner (@DanHep1) February 22, 2018
Rubio made his intentions clear on “what his views on policies are. He’s pro the 2nd amendment” Dan Hepner replied on Twitter.
As far as I can tell he intends to continue to fold to the NRA and take their donations as usual, as always.
— BSmith (@BSmithTweet) February 22, 2018
Rubio clearly plans to “continue to fold to the NRA and take their donations as usual, as always,” B Smith wrote.
Rubio did however add that he supports lifting the age someone can buy a rifle from 18-21, something which Rubio claims the NRA is against. “I think it’s the right thing to do,” he said.
As White Ninja asked on Twitter, wasn’t Rubio “sent to DC to support OUR agenda?”
— Sylvio Bellerose (@vitabella69) February 22, 2018
Overall, though, it was a pretty rough night for Florida’s junior Senator and possible future presidential candidate. Casky may very well have ended those dreams last night.