Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) attacked Breitbart News Network repeatedly in an appearance on the Fox News Channel on Saturday morning as he struggled, just like he did during his 2013 push for amnesty as the lead pitchman for the “Gang of Eight” bill, to defend his record on immigration.
In the interview, with Neil Cavuto, Rubio made at least five demonstrably false statements in under two minutes.
“ICE officials now, who are saying that your push for enforcement on the border has not been consistent, that when you were part of that Gang of Eight that you were not making it a priority. When they questioned this Chris Crane of this council group of officers, he said that not one of the changes we suggested was made to the bill before Sen. Rubio introduced—that he tried and failed with you repeatedly. That your heart wasn’t in it,” Cavuto asked Rubio, referring to a Friday evening exclusive interview that Breitbart News’ Julia Hahn had with Chris Crane, an active duty Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) officer and the current president of the National ICE Council.
Rubio replied by making a series of knowingly false statements attacking Crane’s credibility and attacking the credibility of this news network. Virtually everything Rubio said was inaccurate.
“Number one, that’s not true,” Rubio replied to Cavuto. “And he’s not an ICE official. He’s the head of a union. And it’s being reported on a website that’s not a credible source. It’s the same website that said, Neil, that you guys gave me the questions to the debate because one of the members of my staff is a family member…”
“This was a Breitbart—a Breitbart thing—so you don’t give it any credence or his remarks any credence?” Cavuto followed up.
“We don’t even credential them for our events,” Rubio responded. “This is the same website that reported that Fox News and you and you guys in your debate gave me the questions to the debate so I could prepare. You know that that’s not true. So I literally don’t talk about the things they report because they’re basically conspiracy theories and often times manipulated. That individual is not an ICE official; he’s the head of a union.”
“He’s the head of a council,” Cavuto corrected Rubio.
So, with that said, here are the five inaccurate statements Rubio made about immigration officers and Breitbart News in that Cavuto interview:
1.) Chris Crane is an active duty ICE officer despite Rubio’s claims to the contrary.
First and foremost, Crane—unlike Rubio’s claim in that interview that Crane is “not an ICE official”—is an ICE official. He is a current ICE officer in good standing and has been for 13 years and represents approximately 5,800 frontline ICE officers, agents and personnel as the president of the National ICE Council. The National ICE Council is the union that represents ICE officers. Crane has also testified before Congress on numerous occasions including before the Senate Judiciary Committee about the Gang of Eight amnesty bill that Rubio led. Rubio is also well aware of the fact that Crane is a leading law enforcement and ICE official since he met with Crane the night before he introduced the Gang of Eight amnesty bill with Sens. Chuck Schumer (D-NY), Dick Durbin (D-IL), Bob Menendez (D-NJ), Sen. Michael Bennet (D-CO), Sen. John McCain (R-AZ), Sen. Jeff Flake (R-AZ) and Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC).
2.) Rubio did not fix the concerns law enforcement had with the Gang of Eight bill before it passed the U.S. Senate.
Secondly, and perhaps more importantly, Rubio’s claim that what Crane said—which in essence, as Cavuto detailed in his question to the senator, was that Rubio didn’t include changes to the Gang of Eight bill that law enforcement wanted—is “not true” is also entirely inaccurate.
Read more: Breitbart