Sen. Marco Rubio said on CNN’s “State of the Union,” that everything must be on the table for dealing with Saudi Arabia should the country be guilty of murdering Jamal Khashoggi, columnist for the Washington Post.
Rubio stated, “There needs to be a strong response if, in fact, this proves to be true. If they lured this man into that consulate, went medieval on him and he was killed and chopped up, and they sent a death crew down there to kill him and do all this, that would be an outrage. Just because they’re an ally in an important mission cannot allow us to walk away from that.”
“It can’t be symbolic. It can’t just be words.”
He continued, “I don’t think we should continue as business as usual. He walked into that consulate, and he never came out. Only two things could have happened is that he’s alive and somehow still in there or he’s dead, and the Saudis are the ones who did it. There’s no other explanation for it. If there was video of him leaving, they would have shown it by now. As far as arms sales I would not have said it the way that the president said it. Arms sales are important not just because of the money but leverage over their future behavior. They’ll need our spare parts, they need our training, and those are things we can use to influence their behavior. I would not take cutting that off off the table. Every option needs to be there in a response.”
Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin was scheduled to be at an upcoming summit in Saudi Arabia. When asked about it Rubio had this to say, “I don’t think he should go and pretend it’s business as usual until we know exactly what’s happened here.”