Rubio charged personal bills on GOP card

Days after dodging having to testify in a Florida House ethics investigation of his former protege, Ray Sansom, Republican Senate candidate Marco Rubio has another mini-scandal on his hands.  When Speaker of the Florida House from 2005 to 2008, the Republican Party of Florida (RPOF) provided Rubio with an American Express card that he admits using for personal expenses.  Rubio is accusing Gov. Charlie Crist’s campaign, currently trailing by 18 points in the polls, of leaking the expense information to the media.

The Miami Herald reports:

Rubio said Wednesday that he paid for all personal expenses billed to an American Express card given to him by the party to use from 2005 to 2008, when he left public office. The rest of the charges, he said, were legitimate party expenses.

Those expenses include a $1,000 charge at Braman Honda in Miami for repairs to the family car in January 2008. Rubio said the minivan was damaged by parking attendants at a political function and that the party agreed to cover half of his insurance deductible. The party also paid $2,976 for him to rent a car in Miami for five weeks, according to the records provided by a confidential source.

Rubio said the party allowed him to put personal expenses on the card — and the party reviewed his bill monthly.

Before Marco Rubio’s supporters breath a sigh of relief a spokeswoman for the RPOF says Rubio’s explanation just isn’t so.  The card is a corporate card and must be used to pay for business expenses, with an added twist from the IRS: “Donations to parties must go exclusively toward influencing elections under IRS rules.” Unfortunately for Rubio, that means the grocery and wine bills, plus the lumber, and the electronics, and the computer supplies are probably not supposed to be there.

Full story: Rubio charged personal bills on GOP card – Political Currents – MiamiHerald.com

  • sunnyr

    The American Express Card given to Marco Rubio by the Republican Party was issued under his own personal SS number, using his own personal credit history. It was perfectly acceptable for him to use the card for personal expenses. Everything was paid on time. What is the issue here, besides a desperate Charlie Crist trying to make political points? After reading Rubio’s letter (a pdf file online) to the Florida Republican Party Chairman, John Thrasher, I was totally relieved and now have a very low opinion of Charlie Crist. Dirty politics!

  • thephranc

    So he paid back the personal expenses out of his pocket the the party didn’t think were applicable to them paying? Whats the scandal exactly? Is it that he used the card and paid it back?

  • dunblak

    Obviously, someone at both the Herald and the Daily Caller have pledged their troth to Charlie Crist…what an abominably biased and untruthful story this is beginning with your head and subhead…Crist was a decent Insurance Commissioner but has never followed through on his promises to the folks in Florida since than…time to kick the rascals out!!! And if Rubio turns out the same way, we’ll throw him out too! With the influence of the main stream media finished and the power of the internet, broken promises no longer cut it…and if the Daily Caller wants to continue to exist, it would be wise to stick to the facts and stop shilling for one candidate over the other in a primary.