Did Rubio allow his payday lender dad to buy off federal judges?

Marco Rubio is a politician who likes to quote Bible verses to distract the public from his un-Christian aggression against people he doesn’t like, whom he has never met and who have done him no harm. As a self-proclaimed religious politician, he’s doubly cursed with money — which he needs to stay in office to allow him to continue his assault on ordinary Americans and aspiring citizens.

Money attracts crooks, snake oil sellers and opportunistic pocket pickers of all stripes. Frauds, jugglers and other rottenness have long plagued religion. Even the Bible warns.

“For the love of money is the root of all evil: which some coveted, they have led faith astray and pierced themselves with much pain.” Timothy 6:10

The first track is perfect. The central part continues the good work. But the ending is wishful thinking, as many of these lusts live a happy life thanks to their ill-gotten gains. Especially if they can buy judges. Let me explain.

No one needs money more than an American politician. The Supreme Court has ruled that corporations are people, money is talk, and corporations can protect the identity of people who abuse the political system to their advantage. The effects are obvious. Previously, House races cost $100,000 and Senate races a few million. How picturesque.

In 2020, both Georgia Senate races cost more half a billion dollars. This year’s midterm elections have already brought in $6.4 billion spent. And AdImpact, a nonpartisan analytics firm, estimates the total will be $9.7 billion — in a lean year. Trump defied logic by convincing MAGAs to give him $500 million – and he’s not a candidate for anything.

By those standards, Rubio is relatively small, with just $36 million raised for his Senate race. But 36 is not 0 – and the money had to come from somewhere. So let’s look at Rubio’s dear friend, suboptimal and loan shark mortgage lender, Bernie Navarro.

(Note: Much of the following factual detail comes from a Salon article available here. Commentary is mine)

Navarro’s company, Benworth Capitol, gave Rubio an $850,000 bridge loan on Jan. 18, 2021, so he could buy a new home while his old home was still on the market. In most cases, this would be a trivial transaction. But as a politician, Rubio had to point it out. It took him 18 months to do it. He finally admitted to the act in his August 31, 2022 financial disclosure.

Three months after Navarro granted Rubio his loan – and long before he reported it – Rubio named Navarro to the Southern District Judicial Advisory Commission, which was responsible for selecting the finalists for critical federal appointments in South Florida. These included U.S. district judges, U.S. marshals, and the U.S. attorney, even though Navarro had no law degree – and no legal experience.

I would like to see the terms of the loan. In most cases, six months is the duration of a bridging loan, although it can be extended up to a year. The Salon article does not indicate whether Rubio refunded the money.

Navarro and Rubio are entangled in more than this one transaction. In April 2015, Navarro organized a intimate meeting for Rubio and a group of friends, family and political allies at Navarro’s Miami suburban home, celebrating the senator’s announcement by present it as “the next President of the United States”.

Navarra hosted several fundraisers for Rubio, first for his short presidential campaign, then for his re-election to the Senate in 2016, serving as finance chairman for both campaigns. Navarro contributed over $25,500 Rubio’s campaigns and associated PACs throughout his career.

He also donated more than $56,000 to the Republican candidates and the PACs as well as to the $14,200 to the National Republican Senate Committee.

What kind of guy is Navarro? He’s what you’d expect from a guy who gives bridge loans with “a less stringent approval process” for home buyers with “less than perfect credit.”

In 2020, he registered Benworth as a “woman-owned business,” in an effort to expedite the receipt of COVID emergency relief funds under the Paycheck Protection Program. Salon could not determine whether one or more women owned at least 51% of the company, which is the definition of this term.

Navarro’s two companies, Benworth Capital and Presto Payday, received at least $308,000 in COVID relief while his firm processed PPP loans. There is no evidence that he cheated.

However, he played a role in some “unfortunate” events. In 2017, Benworth foreclosed on the family home of a 14-year-old girl with cerebral palsy. His parents had stopped making monthly payments, saying they had been ‘misled into taking out a short-term, high-interest loan…which they could not afford to repay’ . Miami Herald reported. Ultimately, the family was allowed to stay in their home after Benworth agreed to a $240,000 settlement, nearly $100,000 more than the original loan amount.

Republicans will say it was the family’s fault for not carefully studying the paperwork. However, a reputable company would outline the actual costs of the loan rather than hiding it in fine print on a numbered page while heavily arming unsuspecting borrowers with unnecessarily expensive commitments.

Conservatives accuse liberals of being “too wide awake”. But accusing someone of having too much empathy is only an insult to those who don’t give a damn about their fellow human beings. People like Rubio and Navarro. It’s especially strange when it comes from people who worship Jesus Christ, perhaps the most awakened person who ever lived.

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