But Rubio didn’t mention they might not be his neighbors for long.
Gossip columnist Jose Lambiet quickly noted that Rubio’s West Miami home is on the market for $675,000. Rubio might move to Washington because, he said, it’s too tough to be a father to four children while commuting from the capital to Miami.
Still, by moving to D.C., he’d be living in the ultimate place where “the government dominated the economy.”
Rubio also faulted Obama for believing our “problems were caused by a government that was too small. . . . A major cause of our recent downturn was a housing crisis created by reckless government policies.”
Unsaid: the role of banks and borrowers who engaged in heavy borrowing.
That is, the role of institutions like Century Bank, a bailout-receiving institution run by political supporters of Rubio who gave him a controversial loan on his West Miami home when he was already deeply in debt.
Less than 40 days after Rubio bought his spacious West Miami home for $550,000 in December 2005, Century Bank gave him a whopping $135,000 equity loan. He was already carrying debt from two other homes he owned.
At least one real estate expert told The Miami Herald at the time that the loan had the appearance of a special favor for Rubio, who was in line at the time to become speaker of the Florida House, a post he officially assumed in late 2006.
Adding to the intrigue: Rubio failed to disclose the loan on his financial reports. He did so after The Herald raised questions.
Rubio and Century Bank said the loan was reasonable because it was based on an independent appraisal, which effectively increased the value of the home by 34 percent in just over a month.
Not only did the deal raise eyebrows at the time, it does now: Rubio is selling that very home for 8 percent less than the appraisal estimate used to justify the equity loan at the time.
Also, Century Bank was the largest recipient of bank bailout funds in Florida in 2009 and, according to Pro Publica, was tops in its class for favorable “insider” loans.
Rubio had nothing to do with the bank bailout (he was elected to the Senate in 2010) and spoke against it on the campaign trail.
“More government isn’t going to help you get ahead,” Rubio said Tuesday. “It’s going to hold you back.”
But, were it not for government, Rubio probably wouldn’t have gone on to college, where he received federal student loans.
Also, Rubio’s father received extensive end-of-life care in 2010 through Medicare, and his mother receives it now.
Yet Rubio had, at a 2011 speech at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library, suggested that programs such as Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security “weakened us as a people” because government started to supplant the role of families, neighbors and church groups.
“Republicans have offered a detailed and credible plan that helps save Medicare without hurting today’s retirees,” Rubio said Tuesday. “Instead of playing politics with Medicare, when is the president going to offer his plan to save it? Tonight would have been a good time for him to do it.”
Obama, however, did mention a scaled-back proposal to trim some Medicare costs in his speech. He also reduced future Medicare spending as part of his affordable healthcare plan, which Rubio criticized as well.