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Christina DAllesandro's picture

Talking with Marco Rubio in New Hampshire’s “Conversation Café”  

Hello again! It feels like I’ve hit almost every corner of New Hampshire in the last few months in my work to give voice to the Granite State’s families in the Presidential campaign and beyond. 

Last week, this work gave me a great opportunity – talking directly to Senator Marco Rubio - as part of the candidate “Conversation Cafés” organized by WMUR (our local TV station). WMUR are hosting candidate cafés with each of the candidates and a few members of the public. This was an informal gathering to get to know the candidate on a more personal level.  Click here to see a clip of the show.

My goal in our conversation was to bring forward the questions and concerns MomsRising members like me want all the Presidential candidates, including Senator Rubio, to address in their campaigns. In fact, over 17,000 people (and rising) have already signed MomsRising’s open letter to each presidential candidate urging them to share where they stand on issues like healthcare, immigration, police brutality, paid family leave, childcare/early learning, earned sick days, minimum wage, and more. 

In the conversation with me and the other New Hampshire voters, U.S. Senator Rubio touched on many of these issues.  

When asked about family leave, Senator Rubio identified this as one of the "great challenges of our generation” because, as he noted, in many families both parents often work out necessity. Senator Rubio explained that his plan was not to mandate, but rather sought to encourage businesses to provide paid leave by offering tax incentives. MomsRising has addressed some of our concerns about this plan in this statement and we look forward to continuing to talk with him more about this important policy, including how to move forward a policy that covers all workers.  

We also discussed immigration and Senator Rubio stated that he believes we need to address immigration differently – but said he feels we need to first uphold the current laws around immigration. He acknowledged the crisis related to the number of unaccompanied children crossing our border.  

Lastly, we did briefly touch on the idea of increasing the minimum wage. Senator Rubio shared that he feels a mandated minimum wage increase would damage businesses.  Instead, he advocated for more investment in vocational education.

The conversation was lighthearted too. I learned a lot about his favorite food (Tex-Mex) his favorite film (The Godfather) and his incredible frustration with seeing his beloved Dolphins continually beaten by the New England Patriots. (Better luck next time!) 

This was a great start to a conversation – we’d love for you to continue it. If you see Senator Rubio on the stump while running for office, or any of the other candidates for that matter, make sure you ask about the issues that matter to you.  

Your priorities, thoughts, and questions matter!  We look forward to working together to ensure future debates are about policy, so we can all better understand where all the candidates stand on paid leave, immigration reform and other family economic policies – then we can make our decisions on who we will support based on facts. *To help spark questions, here’s a link to the MomsRising Presidential Candidate Clue card that lists the top policy areas voted on by MomsRising members:

Thank you for ALL you do!



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