Image: Marco Rubio Joins Dianne Feinstein as Co-Chair of National Security Working Group

Marco Rubio Joins Dianne Feinstein as Co-Chair of National Security Working Group

Tuesday, 26 Mar 2013 06:21 PM

By Michael Mullins

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Florida Republican Sen. Marco Rubio and California Democratic Sen. Dianne Feinstein announced on Monday that they will co-chair the Senate's National Security Working Group.

The bipartisan group, founded in 1985 as a forum for national security matters, monitors executive branch negotiations between foreign governments on arms control, weapons of mass destruction, missile defense, and policies on terrorism.

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"It is vital to our country’s defense and foreign policy objectives that the Senate consider the wide range of issues that cut across different committees to advance America’s interests around the world," Rubio said in a press release.

"Given the administration’s recent announcements about missile defense and reports of a potential new round of arms control discussions with Russia, I see great value in the group continuing its traditional role of overseeing the executive branch’s policies on those issues as well as examining new and emerging threats," the Florida senator added.

Feinstein expressed her enthusiasm to work with Rubio.

"Our country faces no shortage of national security and foreign policy challenges including arms control, nuclear proliferation, terrorism, and emerging cyber threats. It is our hope the National Security Working Group will serve as a constructive forum for all senators to actively participate in these and other security matters," she said.

Given their backgrounds and stances, the two senators are an unlikely pair.

Feinstein, a veteran politician with decades of experience, is well-known for her liberal stances, particularly for advocating gun control. Rubio, a junior senator with about two years in his current office, is a Tea Party favorite for supporting limited government and for his conservative views on fiscal and social issues.

Both politicians have strayed from the confines of their parties recently.

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As the Democratic chairwoman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, Feinstein last summer criticized the White House for leaking sensitive intelligence information after the successful raid and killing of Osama Bin Laden.

Rubio, on the other end, has consistently argued for greater immigration reform, pushing for a path to citizenship for those who have immigrated to the United States illegally, which has put him at odds with some members of his party.

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