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Five senators push Obama to do more in Libya

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Sen. Marco Rubio speaks to a Tampa Bay, Fla., crowd while on the 2010 campaign trail.
Paul Lamison / Tampa Tribune / AP / File
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Sen. Marco Rubio (R) of Florida

Son of Cuban exiles fleeing Fidel Castro, freshman Senator Rubio frames the case for a US military role in Libya as avoiding a bloodbath of innocents.

If anything, Obama did not respond swiftly enough to oust Qaddafi, he says. “The United States quite frankly looks weak in this endeavor,” he said at a March 17 hearing before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.

“The president of the United States has specifically said Qaddafi must go, but has done nothing since saying that, except to have internal debates about it for a week and a half or two,” he added.

While some moderates worry that the Libyan opposition might be hijacked by extremists, Rubio has no such qualms. In a Feb. 24 opinion essay in the National Review, he called on the US to “immediately engage willing partners to limit the regime’s ability to wage war against its own citizens,” including imposing a no-fly zone, sending humanitarian aid, and pressing border states to stop the flow of mercenaries into Libya.

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