Marco Rubio’s Use of Party Credit Card Reinforces a Picture of Messy Finances

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    Nov 08, 2015 3:51 PM GMT
    Among the expenditures identified by the campaign as personal was one that became a big distraction for Mr. Rubio when it was first disclosed five years ago: a $3,756 charge in October 2005 to Iberia Tiles for what has been described as stone pavers at his home. Mr. Rubio, who has said that he pulled the wrong card from his wallet to pay the bill, paid American Express at the time to cover the bill, according to his campaign.

    Mr. Bush, who is also running for president, said last week that he believes the credit card statements are fair game.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2015/11/08/us/politics/marc
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    Nov 08, 2015 4:25 PM GMT
    In the Army those of us who did a great deal of travel, as did most of my office staff, were issued credit cards. Initially Diners Club, later the Army switched to American Express. It simplified payments made while on the road. The account was in our name, we paid it monthly ourselves, but then submitted vouchers for Army Finance Office reimbursement to our personal accounts.

    One of my Master Sergeants (E-8 ) kept running months late on his payments, and I got nasty-grams from the Finance Office. I reviewed the charges, and they were mostly for women's jewelry, I presume for his wife, and for other personal, non-official expenses.

    I brought him into my office, and he admitted he had misused his card. I gave him a counseling letter, and he reimbursed the Army.

    About 6 months later it was happening again. I also learned he had essentially coerced a female subordinate of his, a Staff Sergeant (E-6) to lend him money to cover his debt. That's a MAJOR violation in the Army.

    I brought him up on both charges. Because he was an E-8 I couldn't judicially discipline or courts martial him personally, it took a General Officer's authority. To whom I presented the evidence. The Master Sergeant was given the option of courts martial or voluntary resignation, short of his 20-year lock-in for retirement. He took resignation, with no retirement benefits.

    I find it ironic, if not insulting, that a guy who wants to be the Commander-in-Chief was doing essentially the same thing, playing fast and lose with a credit card issued for official Party & government-audited purposes, that got a relatively minor Master Sergeant dismissed from the service. Let's dismiss Rubio from our consideration as President.