Marco Rubio may have committed the ultimate heresy for a Republican: The senator from Florida admitted that recent corporate tax cuts are doing little to help American workers and that increased public spending might be in order.
In an interview with the Economist, Rubio said he doubts that the tax cuts or Trump’s “America first” protectionism will stop people from losing their jobs to automation.
“There is still a lot of thinking on the right that if big corporations are happy, they’re going to take the money they’re saving and reinvest it in American workers,” he said. “In fact, they bought back shares, a few gave out bonuses; there’s no evidence whatsoever that the money’s been massively poured back into the American worker.”
Rubio also threw cold water on Trump’s stated promise to bring back manufacturing jobs to the U.S.
“I have no problem with bringing back American car-manufacturing facilities, but, whether they’re American robots or Mexican robots, they’re going to be highly automated,” he explained.
But Rubio really risks alienating the GOP with some of the solutions he is proposing to help the country because they involve ― cue the horror movie screams ― public spending.
The senator suggests spending more tax dollars on programs focused on technological research and on education programs prioritizing vocational skills.
“Government has an essential role to play in buffering this transition,” he said. “If we basically say everyone is on their own and the market’s going to take care of it, we will rip the country apart, because millions of good, hardworking people lack the means to adapt.”