Rep. Val Demings of Florida ain’t playing in her bid to flip Florida’s Senate seat. The former Orlando police chief was uniquely suited to tackle head on two of this cycle’s top issues—abortion and crime—and she used them to wipe the floor with her Republican rival, Sen. Marco Rubio, at their sole debate Tuesday night.
Rubio, who once told student survivors of the Parkland shooting he would back further gun restrictions, backed away from the position at the debate. The GOP senator claimed that adding age restrictions for certain guns wouldn’t help and expanding background checks wouldn’t have prevented a series of mass shootings in the state.
Demings blasted Rubio for making “promises that you had no intentions to keep.” Turning to Rubio and raising her finger at him, Demings charged, “How long will you watch people being gunned down in first grade, fourth grade, high school, college, church, synagogue, a grocery store, a movie theater, a mall and a night club — and do nothing?”
Rubio just looked down at his lectern waiting for Demings’ smackdown to end.
A similar scene played out on the issue of abortion.
Rubio repeatedly dodged several queries about whether he would vote in favor of national abortion ban without exceptions, saying it couldn’t muster the support in Congress.
But the Senator also claimed the mantle of being “100 percent pro-life,” saying that he has only supported legislation that includes exceptions because it stands a chance of passing Congress.
Rubio wanted to have it both ways, getting credit for being anti-abortion and opposing exceptions, while taking the edge off his zealotry by claiming to be a pragmatist about what is politically feasible.
Demings had thoughts.
“As a police detective who investigated cases of rape and incest, no, senator, I don’t think it’s OK for a 10-year-old girl to be raped and have to carry the seed of her rapist,” she said. “No, I don’t think it’s OK for you to make decisions for women and girls as a senator. I think those decisions are made between the woman, her family, her doctor and her faith.”
On Daily Kos’ The Brief, we speak with polling giant Drew Linzer who runs polling firm CIVIQs, comes in to talk about a new poll his team conducted for Daily Kos. He is also here to explain, as a professional, how to not stress out about every time you see a poll going your way or ther other way. One thing is for sure though, we are living in historic times and what that means for these midterms cannot be easily predicted—so Get Out The Vote!
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