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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Once a bitter rival, Marco Rubio continues to enjoy a relationship with Donald Trump

Debate rivals Marco Rubio and Donald Trump

The Associated Press

Debate rivals Marco Rubio and Donald Trump



For all their shared vitriol on the campaign trail, Marco Rubio and Donald Trump have enjoyed a productive relationship and today, the Florida senator applauded the president yet again.

“I commend the Trump administration for taking decisive and significant action to prevent the Maduro regime from using Wall Street to finance its repression and tyranny,” Rubio said moments after new sanctions were announced. “The United States remains committed to supporting the cause of freedom and democracy in Venezuela.”

Rubio has played a role in highlighting the situation in Venezuela — he noted in Doral this week that he’d spoken repeatedly to the administration — and he used his standing to shape Trump’s position on Cuba.

While Rubio once said he’d drive around the country to prevent “con man” Trump from becoming president, he’s finding it more advantageous to largely avoid jumping on every controversy. (A notable exception: Rubio’s comments on Charlottesville, though earlier this week he adopted Trump’s “both sides” sentiment.)

Now Rubio, who was one of the first lawmakers Trump invited to a private White Hosue dinner, is looking to score a legislative victory with his plan to increase the $1,000 child tax credit to $2,500 — a goal he is pursuing with Ivanka Trump.

On the day of the Cuba announcement, Rubio and Trump exchanged compliments.

"I want to express our deep gratitude to a man who has really become a friend of mine, and I want to tell you, he's one tough competitor, Sen. Marco Rubio, great guy," Trump said.

"He is tough. Man. He is tough, and he is good, and he loves you."

[Last modified: Friday, August 25, 2017 12:25pm]


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