WASHINGTON — Missouri Sen. Claire McCaskill slammed presidential hopeful Marco Rubio on ABC’s This Week on Sunday, saying the Florida senator “folded like a cheap shotgun” on immigration.
“If you look at Marco Rubio’s record, he took a principled, courageous stand on immigration reform and we passed a comprehensive bill in the Senate,” said McCaskill, a Democrat. “Then the minute his party’s base started chewing on him about it, the minute Rush Limbaugh criticized him, he folded like a cheap shotgun.”
McCaskill said Rubio’s decision to stop pushing for an immigration overhaul because of political necessity was “old politics” and “the stalest trick in the book.”
Rubio said in an interview on CBS’s Face the Nation over the weekend that the immigration system would have to be fixed in incremental steps, rather than in “a massive piece of legislation.”
McCaskill’s comments came in response to host Martha Raddatz asking for her response to Rubio’s critique of Hillary Clinton as “a leader of yesterday.”
McCaskill is expected to take a vocal role in the Clinton campaign.
McCaskill’s early support for Clinton was striking because she had backed Barack Obama in the 2008 Democratic primary, and famously said that President Bill Clinton was a great leader, but she didn’t want her daughter near him.
The two seem to have made amends since, and McCaskill has been defending Clinton -- and knocking her Republican rivals -- on the political talk show circuit.
--LINDSAY WISE, McClatchy Washington Bureau