Marco Rubio on Asian American Issues

See below for Marco Rubio’s positions on:

– Asian Pacific Americans the candidate has hired, appointed or supported for election
– Affirmative Action and Quotas
– Employment discrimination, glass ceilings
– Making English the official language of the U.S.
– Foreign Policy toward China, Taiwan, India, Japan, Korea, Vietnam .   Missile defense system to protect Japan, Taiwan, or South Korea
– Hate Crimes. Legislation increasing penalties for hate crimes.
– Immigration
– School Vouchers
– Voting rights and providing ballots in different languages.

Asian Pacific Americans the candidate has hired, appointed or supported for election

No information

Employment discrimination, glass ceilings

No information

Affirmative Action and Quotas

No information

School Vouchers (Asian Americans can escape public school systems run by teachers’ unions and incompetent liberals)

Improving K-12 Education Through School Choice

A quality education is more important than ever, because the jobs of tomorrow will require more education and skills than ever. We need to allow charter schools and other innovative schools to flourish, and the key to that is empowering parents. Parents should be the ultimate decision makers on where their children go to school. Promoting school choice will provide opportunity to poorer communities, help special needs children, and raise quality across the system.

In the Senate, Marco has . . .
Boosted School Choice by supporting legislation to:

Create school-choice tax credits
Increase the availability of charter schools,
Expand the portability of school funding for low-income children, military children, and special-needs children

As President, Marco will:
Institute School Choice Reforms by:

Creating a national school choice scholarship program
Ensuring parents have the ability to send their children to school that best suits their educational needs

Hate Crimes. Legislation increasing penalties for hate crimes.

No information


CNN, Republican Presidential Debate, 12/15/15

DANA BASH (DEBATE MODERATOR): We’ve been talking tonight about programs and policy proposals that you all have to keep Americans safe and it’s a big discussion on the campaign trail. Also about border security and immigration. So let’s talk about immigration. Senator Rubio. You co-authored a bill with Democrats two years ago that allowed a path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants. Do you still support that path to citizenship, which means giving those immigrants rights like the right to vote?

MARCO RUBIO (R-FL): Immigration is not an issue that I read about in the newspaper or watch a documentary on PBS or CNN. It’s an issue I’ve lived around my whole life. My family are immigrants. My wife’s family are immigrants. All of my neighbors are immigrants. I see every aspect of this problem. The good, the bad, and the ugly. And here’s what we learned in 2013. The American people don’t trust the federal government to enforce our immigration laws and we will not be able to do anything on immigration until we first prove to the American people that illegal immigration is under control. And we can do that. We know what it takes to do that. It takes at least 20,000 more additional border agents. It takes completing those 700 miles of fencing. It takes a mandatory E-Verify system and a mandatory entry/exit tracking system to prevent visa overstays. After we’ve done that, the second thing we have to do is reform and modernize the legal immigration system. And after we’ve done those two things, I think the American people are going to be very reasonable with what do you do with someone who’s been in this country for 10 or 12 years, who hasn’t otherwise violated our laws because if they’re a criminal they can’t stay. They’ll have to go undergo a background check, pay a fine, start pay taxes, and ultimately they’ll be given a work permit. And that’s all they’re going to be allowed to have for at least 10 years. But you can’t even get to that third step until you’ve done the other two things and that was the lesson we learned in 2013. There is no trust that the federal government will enforce the law. They will not support you until you see it done first.

BASH: Senator, you haven’t answered the question. You just described a long path but does that path end at citizenship?

RUBIO: Oh, but I’ve answered that question repeatedly. I am personally open after all of that has happened and after ten years in that probationary status where all they have is a work permit, I personally am open to allowing people to apply for a green card. That may not be a majority position in my party. But that’s down the road. You can’t even begin that process until you prove to people, not just pass a law that says you’re going to bring illegal immigration under control. You’re going to have to do it and prove to people that it is working. And that was the lesson of 2013. And it’s more true today than it was then, after a migratory crisis on the border with minors coming over that you’re seeing start up again now. After all these executive orders the president has issued. More than ever, we need to prove to people that illegal immigration is under control.

Also see: https://marcorubio.com/issues-2/marco-rubio-immigration-plan-border-security-legal/

Voting rights and providing ballots in different languages.

No information

Making English the official language of the U.S.

Introduced amendment to immigration bill to require English proficiency in order to become a permanent resident or citizen.

Virtually every important document in the US is written in English. English has been the predominant language since we were 13 separate colonies. It is our de facto official language, and I don’t think there is anything wrong with recognizing that fact. Some people argue that declaring English to be our official language would prohibit other languages from being spoken in this country. But the government can’t tell you what language to speak at home.
I think everyone should learn other languages. Knowledge of foreign languages is economically empowering and culturally rewarding. But English is our unifying language. We can all speak whatever language we like here. But we should have one language in common. Some critics argue that it’s nativist or racist to support English as our official language. I think that’s absurd. Learning to speak English is more than a sign of respect from immigrants for their new country. Knowledge of English is necessary to the economic progress and social assimilation.
Source: An American Son, by Marco Rubio, p.265 , Jun 19, 2012

Foreign Policy. Like Americans of African, Cuban, Greek, Irish, Italian, Jewish, Mexican, and Polish descent, many APA’s are interested in American foreign policy toward the country of their ancestors.

U.S. policy toward China and Taiwan

Rubio released a statement November 7, 2015, that said the U.S. should “reassert its commitment to Taiwan’s security.” He also criticized the Obama administration’s relationship with Taiwan. The statement said: “Despite its supposed ‘pivot’ to Asia, the Obama administration has largely ignored Taiwan’s interests, including its urgent need for defensive arms. It has been four years since the White House notified Congress of a major arms sale to Taiwan, the longest period without such a notification in over 25 years. We must do more to help Taiwan counter the growing military threat from China. In addition, instead of focusing on petty bilateral trade disputes, the United States should be pushing for Taiwan’s eventual inclusion in additional international organizations and trade agreements. Finally, we should take the occasion of this meeting between the leaders of China and Taiwan to enhance dialogue and strengthen our own ties with Taipei. We too must engage with Taiwan at higher levels to ensure peace and stability across the Strait. Taiwan is one of America’s oldest and most steadfast security partners. We need to work together to pursue our common interest in an Asia that is prosperous, peaceful, and free.”
Marco Rubio, United States Senator for Florida, “Following Historic China-Taiwan Meeting, Rubio Calls For Strengthening U.S.-Taiwan Relations”

Below from https://marcorubio.com/news/marco-rubio-china-presents-challenges-opportunities/

In this new century, China presents both opportunities and challenges for our people.

Trade with its growing middle class has opened our businesses to hundreds of millions of new customers. South Carolina can attest to this. In 2013, China consumed $4.2 billion of goods and services produced in this state – more than any other country. That supports thousands of South Carolina jobs. And because of good policies from your governor, textile jobs once taken by China are now returning.

But as we’ve found this week, the negative effects of China’s economic meddling are severe. The Chinese government’s efforts to devalue its currency and rig global trade are a rising threat to our economic interests.

China is also a growing danger to our national security. Earlier this year, it was behind the largest cyber-attack ever carried out against the United States. Its current ruler, Xi Jinping, is trying to convince his country’s 1.3 billion people that the way to reestablish Chinese greatness is to undermine the United States and enhance China’s influence at our expense.

To this end, he is asserting control over the East and South China Seas, through which more than half of global commerce passes each day. This is Beijing’s way of gaining leverage over the world. It has unilaterally declared an “air defense identification zone” over international waters and the Senkaku Islands, which are the territory of our ally Japan. In the South China Sea, Beijing has dispatched ships and planes, moved oilrigs, and even constructed artificial islands in an attempt to strengthen its position militarily.

Under Xi Jinping’s rule, China has intensified its campaign to push America out of Asia, denouncing our long-standing alliances with other democracies like Japan and the Philippines, developing weapons that threaten our bases and naval assets, and declaring that Asian affairs should be left to “the people of Asia.” China aims to make it so costly and difficult for America to get involved in the region that we won’t bother.

In short, China is doing everything it can to make the 21st century a Chinese Century.

But if you want to know what a Chinese Century would look like for the world, look no further than how the government treats its own people. In just the last year, it has rounded up human rights advocates and thrown them in prison, torn down churches and oppressed Christians, forced parents to get abortions and sterilizations, detained political dissidents without trial or legal recourse, undermined the autonomy of Hong Kong, and tightened controls on the Internet.

This is a disgrace, and we must stand against it. America holds nothing but goodwill toward the people of China. I believe the moment they finally attain true freedom will fundamentally alter the course of human history, and will benefit the economic and strategic interests of the United States.

Freedom for the people of China must be our goal; but it has not been the goal of President Obama. He has only appeased their oppressive leaders, staying silent in the face of their human rights abuses. He has failed to respond adequately to the unprecedented breaches of our corporate and government computer networks. And he has given our allies reason to doubt our commitment to their security. And the fact that China is growing more assertive by the day suggests that its rulers share the same doubts about American resolve.

. . . . . . . .

Asia has been a region of particular interest to me. In the last Congress, I was the Senate Republican responsible for overseeing US policy towards Asia. And last year, I visited multiple allies in East Asia to highlight the importance of our partnerships.

Our nominee must have a plan to correct U.S.-China relations, and that is what I will offer today.

As president, my approach toward China will adhere closely to the three principles of my foreign policy that I outlined at the beginning of this campaign. My goals will be to restore our national security and defend our strategic interests, protect our economic wellbeing, and advance the cause of freedom and human rights.

The first goal will require restoring American Strength to ensure the United States remains a Pacific power.

While China has increased its defense spending by another 10% this year, the Obama administration has cut defense spending by nearly a trillion dollars over a decade. Our Navy is now smaller than at any time since before World War I, our Army is headed for pre-World War II levels, and our Air Force has the smallest and oldest combat force in its history. And make no mistake, numbers matter. Our planes and ships cannot be in two places at once. If elected, I will end defense sequestration and restore the Pentagon’s budget to its appropriate level.

Doing so will allow us to neutralize the threat posed by China’s rapidly growing forces and capabilities. We’ll ensure that our carrier fleet is sufficient to support forward deployment of a second carrier to the Pacific.  We’ll build Virginia-class submarines at a rate of two per year, construct new long-range precision strike systems, protect our satellites and space capabilities from attack, and we’ll deploy advanced missile defense systems to where our men and women are stationed throughout the region.

Restoring our military strength in Asia will also require strengthening our alliances.  Our treaty allies and partners depend on the weight of their friendship with America to keep China off their doorstep.

When I am president, instead of inviting China to military exercises, we will conduct joint freedom of navigation patrols with our partners in East and Southeast Asia to challenge any attempts to close off international waters or airspace. We will seek enhanced access across the region and deploy additional air and naval assets to contested areas. We will confront Chinese propaganda in Asia by highlighting U.S. resolve and the flimsiness of China’s territorial claims. And if China continues to use military force to advance its illegitimate claims, I will not hesitate to take action.

We will also promote collaboration between our allies and partners. America cannot and need not bear the full burden of counterbalancing China’s power. Enhanced coordination between Japan, South Korea, India, Australia, the Philippines, Thailand, Taiwan, Singapore, Vietnam, and Mongolia, among others, serves our interests. Promoting democracyaround China is an important way to promote democracy within China. Taiwan, for instance, provides a powerful model for how traditional Chinese culture can coexist with democracy.

My second goal in relation to China is of particular relevance this week, and that is protecting the American economy. Until recently, China has experienced impressive economic growth by copying parts of the capitalist economic model and enjoying the stability afforded by U.S. power. At the same time, it has damaged other economies, including our own, by bending and breaking the rules of international trade to achieve its own ends. It has subsidized exports, devalued currency, restricted imports, and stolen technology on a massive scale.

As President, I would respond to China’s economic misconduct not through aggressive retaliation, which would hurt us as much as them, but by reinforcing our insistence on free markets and free trade. This means immediately moving forward with the Trans-Pacific Partnership and other trade agreements that strengthen strategic ties with our partners in Asia.We will not build exclusionary trading blocs, but nor will we allow China to reap the full benefits of American-led commerce unless it fundamentally changes its attitudes and its policies.

In the 21st century, economic security and national security depend on cyber security. No longer will China hack our corporate or government servers with ease and without consequence. I will fortify our cyber defenses. I will work with other nations to pressure China to halt its use of commercial espionage as a tool of statecraft. And I will coordinate international efforts to identify and punish any Chinese nationals who violate this.

In addition, we will impose sanctions and other penalties on Chinese companies that can be shown to have profited from pirating our software or movies or music or any other intellectual property. We also must restrict Beijing’s access to strategically sensitive technologies.  We can no longer afford to enable the growth of Chinese military power in pursuit of short-term economic gain.

Our third goal in relation to China concerns not just what we do, but who we are. We must stand on the side of freedom and human rights, both inside China and on its periphery.  It is our moral and strategic imperative.

The Obama administration has had little to say about the absence of political and religious freedom in China, or about the deteriorating human rights situation that has accompanied Xi Jinping’s rise. Systems of government built on repression are like houses built on sand. The fragile social foundations of the Chinese economy are one reason for the crash we saw this week. Helping the Chinese people achieve freedom and democracy is not just our moral duty as a free people – it will have a profound effect on global prosperity and our security.

When I am president, Beijing will not receive a free pass on human rights. I will instruct all U.S. officials meeting with their Chinese counterparts to list political prisoners by name and press for their unconditional release. I will impose visa bans and asset freezes on Chinese officials who violate human rights. I will do all I can to empower Chinese citizens to breach what has been called the Great Firewall of China, and gain access to news and information online about their country and the world.

Finally, I will understand that the presidency is the most visible office in the world, and that it comes with an ability – and a responsibility – to lead by example. The president can send powerful messages through simple actions, such as visiting the underground churches and unofficial houses of worship throughout China to show his support for religious freedom.

And I will send a message to the world before I even take the oath of office. I will invite Chinese dissidents and other freedom fighters around the world to be honored guests at my inauguration. I’ll personally engage religious rights activists and others such as students in Hong Kong, beleaguered lawyers, dissidents on the mainland, and persecuted Tibetan monks and nuns, who, like the American people, value basic human dignity and liberty.

These will one day be the leaders of a democratic China. These are the leaders worthy of a red carpet welcome in Washington, DC.  And giving them that honor will set an example to the world.

Let me just close by saying that, despite the challenges we face in regards to China, the opportunities are even greater.

In our international economy, the ability to trade is greater than it has ever been, the ability of students to travel abroad and learn is greater than it has ever been, the ability to innovate through cooperation as well as competition is greater than it has ever been. China and America are the largest economies on earth. If our people are allowed to cooperate on their economic futures, it can only change the world for the better.

Next Wednesday presents us an important chance to reflect on that fact. It is the 70th anniversary of the allied victory in the Pacific, which effectively ended World War II. Since then, look what economic cooperation has brought millions of people in the Asia Pacific region – from South Korea to Japan and even many parts of China – who just decades ago lived in poverty and despair, but now live in the middle class, and whose children have an opportunity to live an even better life.

That’s an extraordinary achievement, but one that would have been impossible without the stability American leadership has offered the region since World War II, through freedom of the seas, established international norms, and the military power to back them up.

The American Century showed us what can happen when freedom overtakes oppression, when democracy overtakes totalitarianism, when economic opportunity overtakes a stifling authoritarian economy. We cannot walk away from everything we have achieved in that regard.

U.S. policy toward India

[In September 2014], coinciding with Indian prime minister Narendra Modi’s visit to Washington, Rubio penned an op-ed in the Daily Signal. He faulted the Obama administration for having “neglected” India after the George W. Bush administration’s opening to New Delhi. According to Rubio: “India, the world’s largest democracy, has the potential to become a key U.S. partner in the decades ahead.”
Rubio wants to strengthen security cooperation with India, especially through joint naval exercises bilaterally and with other partners, and collaboration on “emerging technologies” in missile defense and in space. He advocates deeper cooperation with India, not just in South Asia, but also by “encouraging greater Indian involvement” in the Middle East and East Asia. He notes India’s large Muslim population and its stake in combating radical Islam. Finally, he uses the example of Florida’s $1 billion annual exports to India to illustrate why trade ties with India’s large and growing market matter to Americans.

U.S. policy toward Japan

In an April 29, 2015, op-ed in The Wall Street Journal, Rubio argued that the United States and Japan should form a strong alliance and work with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to finalize the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade deal. He wrote, “The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), discussed between President Obama and Prime Minister Abe this week, will further our strategic goals in Asia and increase prosperity at home. It will advance economic liberty and unleash free-market forces in the world’s most dynamic region. It will create the opportunity for emerging economies to become the next ‘tigers’ of Asia and enhance linkages between nations in the Western Hemisphere and East Asia. …Concluding TPP will require the passage of Trade Promotion Authority by the Congress. Our foreign trading partners like Japan need to have confidence that American presidents can deliver on free trade. Once we pass Trade Promotion Authority we can finish negotiating a pact that will help build a network of Pacific economies based on competition, the rule of law and free markets.”

U.S. policy toward Korea

Jan 24 2014: Rubio Delivers Foreign Policy Speech In South Korea

Economically, the U.S.-Korean relationship is a major success story.

Given what it has achieved in the last sixty years, South Korea has become a model for others.  Your country’s transition from a recipient of international assistance to one of the world’s leading providers of aid to nations in need is a transformation that we are working together to achieve elsewhere around the world.

Going forward, we need to build on the success of the US-Korea Free Trade Agreement (FTA) and, once the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) is concluded, find ways for other interested nations, such as South Korea, to join. This will allow us to further unite our economies on either side of the Pacific in the name of creating commerce and business opportunities for millions throughout North America, South America, and Asia.

Key to this, as you have seen from the experience of the US-Korea FTA, is ensuring that there is bipartisan support for free trade in the U.S. Congress. We also look for decisive action from President Obama to close a deal on the TPP and reclaim an international leadership position on free and open trade.

I’ve said before that I support trade promotion authority for the President and hope to support the Trans-Pacific Partnership once it is concluded and the details briefed to Congress. I remain optimistic that there will be bipartisan support for both.

I believe we also should look for ways to extend visas to citizens of Korea to provide opportunities for those who wish to conduct business in America. I represent a state that benefits greatly from foreign tourists and business. I know there is great interest in the Republic of Korea and in other close American allies to increase the allocation of visas for those who want to work and study in my country and we should examine that as well.

Also, as America’s energy situation goes through a dramatic transformation, I think we need to closely examine, once our own indigenous needs are addressed, how America’s energy boom can also benefit our close allies, including and especially here in Asia.

Finally, we need to ensure that our diplomatic efforts in the region match the steps we are taking in the security and economic spheres.

The United States needs Japan and South Korea to work together.  A closer bond between our treaty allies will immeasurably improve security in the region and enhance America’s security.

To aid cooperation and understanding between our allies, we should consider modifying the so-called “hub-and-spoke” model, in which the United States is always at the center of most important strategic interactions.  Instead, we should find ways that our allies and partners can be further empowered to tackle these challenges jointly, with the knowledge that the United States remains deeply committed to the security and the prosperity of this region.

This means building and deepening the cooperation that you and other U.S. partners have begun with emerging partners, such as India.  It means establishing new avenues of cooperation in the defense, civil, and economic spheres between democracies in the region.  It means taking a hard look at current regional institutions to see whether they are up to the challenge we are facing in the decades ahead.

This is not always as easy as moving more military assets into the region, or capitalizing on the economic success of our partnership, but is just as important as the other areas I have discussed.


Rubio voted for free trade agreements with Panama and Korea in 2011.  Congress.gov, “H.R.3080”

As President, Marco will:
Counter North Korean Aggression
Restore North Korea to the State Sponsor of Terrorism List
Bolster Deterrence
Promote Human Rights and Democracy

How Marco Will Stand Up to North Korea

U.S. policy toward Vietnam

July 6, 2015: Rubio, Senators Urge Obama To Prioritize Human Rights In Meeting With Vietnamese Government
Washington, D.C.– U.S. Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) today joined with Senators Bill Cassidy, M.D. (R-LA), David Vitter (R-LA), John Cornyn (R-TX), John Boozman (R-AR), James Lankford (R-OK) and Thom Tillis (R-NC) to urge President Obama to make human rights improvements in Vietnam a top priority in his meeting with Secretary General of the Vietnamese Communist Party Nguyen Phu Trong this week.

As negotiations for the Trans Pacific Partnership continue, further expansion of trade and security relationships with the Vietnamese government should be contingent upon significant improvements in human rights practices. This includes freeing political prisoners and prisoners of conscience, repealing restrictive laws that deny freedom of expression, association, and peaceful assembly, among other things.


Missile defense system to protect Japan, Taiwan, or South Korea

Restoring and Modernizing American Strength

As President, Marco will:
Modernize Missile Defense for the 21st Century
Expand missile defense by speeding up deployment of interceptors in Europe, deploying a third site in the United States, and ensuring that advanced programs are adequately funded.
Work interoperably with allies on missile defense – we should encourage the spread of missile defense technology as a solution to the spread of ballistic and cruise missiles.
Increase the Missile Defense Agency’s Research & Development budget and create a rapid-fielding office to focus on fielding directed energy weapons, railguns, UAV-enabled defenses, and other means to defeat a threat missile across its entire flight trajectory.

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