Count Marco Rubio as a non-believer of President Barack Obama and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s “business-like” relationship.
In an interview with radio host Hugh Hewitt Tuesday evening, Rubio said it is “absurd” for President Obama to say he and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu have a “business-like” relationship.
Obama made the claim Tuesday during a joint press conference with Afghanistan President Ashraf Ghani Ahmadzai.
“I have a very business-like relationship with Prime Minister Netanyahu,” Obama said earlier on Tuesday. “I’ve met with him more than any other world leader. I talk to him all the time. He is representing his country’s interests the way he thinks he needs to, and I’m doing the same.”
“So the issue is not a matter of relations between leaders. The issue is a very clear substantive challenge,” Obama said. We believe that two states is the best path forward for Israel’s security, for Palestinian aspirations and for regional stability.”
Rubio took direct issue with this statement, calling out Obama’s “political machine” that was deployed to Israel to help Netanyahu’s opponent. (RELATED: ‘A Historic Mistake’: Rubio Rips Obama Over Treatment Of Israel, Netanyahu)
“First of all, he’s wrong on both counts,” Rubio told Hewitt. “1) He can’t say he has a business-like relationship that isn’t personal when his entire political machine virtually, some of the top people on his political operation were in Israel, on the ground trying to defeat Netanyahu, which is unprecedented.”
“You know, he didn’t send anyone in any other country to try to influence the outcome of those elections…He sent them down there to start the equivalent of a Super PAC to try to oust Netanyahu,” Rubio said. “What he’s saying is absurd, in terms of it not being personal. That sounds pretty personal to me.”
Rubio made the remarks after his 15 minute long floor speech last night chastising President Obama and the administration for its treatment of Israel and Netanyahu in the run up to a potential deal with Iran.