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Blasted as a no-show, Marco Rubio Constituent Report says he’s helped thousands

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Despite concerns on his questionable attendance record in the U.S. Senate, Marco Rubio has been busy helping thousands of Floridians solve a variety of problems with federal agencies.

In a new Constituent Report released Friday, Rubio’s office says it has helped more than 30,000 individuals on everything from issues with the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), Medicare, or Social Security to proving identity to the Internal Revenue Service after it’s been stolen. The caseload handled by his office includes over 500 mobile office hours and nearly 8,000 additional cases since July 2014. About 95 percent of problems have been resolved or closed so far, they claim.

This week, Rubio’s office passed a milestone, hosting its 1000th Mobile Office Hour event.

“Since I was elected five years ago, my top priority has been making sure Floridians in need of assistance receive the help they need,” said the Republican presidential candidate. “I’m proud that we have the best team in the country helping our neighbors and making this goal a reality every day.”

The majority of constituent issues involve immigration, VA benefits, taxes, Social Security and Medicare.

Among the people helped by Rubio’s constituent service team was a young woman stranded in an international airport with an expired passport. The office helped her get a new one so she can make a rescheduled flight. The staff also help the wounded veteran get disability payments reinstated, with retroactive payments for money owed by the VA.

This new report boasting Rubio’s effectiveness with Florida citizens comes in response to a wave of complaints of having the worst attendance in the U.S. Senate, after missing about 34 percent of votes in 2015, as he runs for the White House.

A Nov. 25 op-ed from the South Florida Sun Sentinel – titled “Sadly, Marco Rubio’s attendance record is getting worse” – the editorial board blasted Rubio’s spotty attendance, declaring he is “ripping us off, should resign to run [for the presidency] and let the governor appoint someone else who can do the job full-time.”

In the week after the Oct. 29 Republican Party debate, the paper noted Rubio had a near-perfect record on the job. Soon afterward, however, Rubio was reportedly a no-show for a closed-door Senate Foreign Relations Committee briefing on the aftermath of the Paris terror attacks. Instead, he was on his way to California for a fundraiser.

Phil Ammann is a St. Petersburg-based journalist and blogger. With more than three decades of writing, editing and management experience, Phil produced material for both print and online, in addition to founding HRNewsDaily.com. His broad range includes covering news, local government and culture reviews for Patch.com, technical articles and profiles for BetterRVing Magazine and advice columns for a metaphysical website, among others. Phil has served as a contributor and production manager for SaintPetersBlog since 2013. He lives in St. Pete with his wife, visual artist Margaret Juul and can be reached at phil@floridapolitics.com and on Twitter @PhilAmmann.

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