Marco Rubio Calls Out the Liberal Media for Hanging on Trump’s Every Word and Insult

In some of his first comments during Thursday’s Republican Presidential Primary Debate on the Fox News Channel (FNC), Senator Marco Rubio (Fl.) called out the liberal media for obsessively covering Donald Trump’s every move and insult instead of reporting on the issues.

“The media has given personal attacks Donald Trump has made incredible amount of coverage. Let's start talking about the issues that matter to this country,” Rubio urged.

When confronted by co-moderator Bret Baier about his recent attempts to fire back at Trump’s daily insults, Rubio first noted that “for the last year, Donald Trump has basically mocked everybody with personal attacks” including “people sitting on the stage today.”

The Florida Senator argued that “if there has been any candidate deserved to be attacked that way, it's been Donald Trump for the way he has treated people in the last campaign” and so despite that, he emphasized his desire “to have a policy debate. I hope that's what we will have here tonight” instead of a food fight.

Tell the Truth 2016

Rubio then concluded: 

[B]ut let's be honest about all this too. The media has given personal attacks Donald Trump has made incredible amount of coverage. Let's start talking about the issues that matter to this country. I'm willing to do this right here right here tonight.

As my NewsBusters colleague Rich Noyes outlined in a new study published on Wednesday, the network evening newscasts awarded Trump three times more airtime than both Cruz or Rubio and just over 50 percent of all coverage concerning the GOP campaign. 

The relevant portion of the transcript from FNC’s Republican Presidential Primary Debate on March 3 can be found below.

FNC’s Republican Presidential Primary Debate
March 3, 2016
9:05 p.m. Eastern

REPUBLICAN SENATOR MARCO RUBIO (Fl.): You know, Bret, let me say something this campaign for the last year, Donald Trump has basically mocked everybody with personal attacks. He has done so to people sitting on the stage today. He has done so with people disabled. He has done it with every other candidate in this race, so if there has been any candidate deserved to be attacked that way, it's been Donald Trump for the way he has treated people in the last campaign. Now, with that said, I would much prefer to have a policy debate. I hope that's what we will have here tonight. Let's have a policy debate. 

BRET BAIER: And we will. 

RUBIO: Let's talk about Donald Trump's strategy and my strategy and John Kasich's strategy when it comes to ISIS and on healthcare and the important issues facing this country, but let's be honest about all this too. The media has given personal attacks Donald Trump has made incredible amount of coverage. Let's start talking about the issues that matter to this country. I'm willing to do this right here right here tonight. 

Curtis Houck
Curtis Houck
Curtis Houck is the Managing Editor of NewsBusters for the Media Research Center