Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Florida, said the United States should use its influence to intervene in conflicts overseas, in a speech addressing foreign policy topics on campus Tuesday.
Rubio, who also addressed topics such as Iran and Edward Snowden, said he believes wherever people are suffering, dying, being invaded and persecuted, there is a tyrannical government behind the conflict. Rubio, who began his political career in the Florida House of Representatives and was elected to the U.S. Senate in 2010, said the U.S. government needs to become more involved.
“In the real world, there is only one nation on this planet still capable of rallying the free people of this world for the great causes of our time, and that nation is ours,” Rubio said. “That is not my opinion. That is fact.”
Rubio said he would support the use of force against Iran if diplomacy and economic sanctions fail because he believes Iran to be a serious threat.
“Despite these crippling international sanctions, Iran continues to spend millions of dollars a year supporting terrorism all over the world,” Rubio said. “America, if you want peace and prosperity, one of the best ways to ensure it is to have a military that no one will question.”
After being asked a question regarding Snowden leaking out government information in 2013, Rubio said his actions were the most damaging revelations of secrets in the country’s history.
Economics freshman Walker Smith, who said he is already pursuing a career in politics, said he was inspired by Rubio and believes more students should attend these kinds of events.
“Everything he said are issues that affect us, so it’s important that we are engaged and understand,” Smith said.
Almost 300 people attended the event, which was held at the Blanton Museum of Art. The Clements Center for History, Strategy and Statecraft helped organize the event. The center’s executive director, Willam Inboden, said the event was intended to inspire UT students to get involved in politics.
“Having someone like Sen. Rubio here … is a great way to inspire students about their future possibilities,” Inboden said. “They were college students too. I hope that, among our UT students, we have some future senators as well.”