Florida Senator Marco Rubio’s recent “Income Mobility and the American Dream” speech has thrown the media into a bit of a frenzy, as left-leaning publications have been quick to come out and describe Rubio as being out of touch with poverty issue in the United States.Rubio’s remarks that sent the left into full-meltdown was his assertion that marriage decreased the “probability of child poverty by 82 percent.”
“Until at least a few decades ago, our economy proved sufficiently dynamic and innovative to replace old jobs with new ones, but that hasn’t been happening in recent years,” Rubio said. “Social factorsalso play a major role in denying equal opportunity. The truth is that the greatest tool to lift people, to lift children and families from poverty, is one that decreases the probability of child poverty by 82 percent. But it isn’t a government program. It’s called marriage.”
He continued, “Fifty years ago today, when the War on Poverty was launched, 93 percent of children born in the United States were born to married parents. By 2010, that number had plummeted to 60 percent. It shouldn’t surprise us that 71 percent of poor families with children are families that are not headed by a married couple.”-PolitifactWith out getting into the factual weeds of Politifact’s build up to their ruling on Rubio’s claim, we offer the short and sweet ruling.
Rubio said that marriage “decreases the probability of child poverty by 82 percent.” Our research suggests that a more current and more accurate statistic to back up his claim would be a decrease of 71 percent. That’s lower, but not dramatically so. We rate his claim Mostly True.
You can read the entire transcript of Rubio’s speech on his legislative website here.