US Republican Senator Calls for Coup in Venezuela

U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has also suggested a military "solution". 

Florida Republican Senator Marco Rubio is a staunch backer of U.S.-sponsored regime change in Venezuela and Cuba
Florida Republican Senator Marco Rubio is a staunch backer of U.S.-sponsored regime change in Venezuela and Cuba

As Venezuelans get ready to vote in April’s presidential election, U.S. Senator Marco Rubio claimed via Twitter the world would support Venezuela’s military if they decided to orchestrate a coup against Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro, who is up for re-election.

The Republican lawmaker from Florida reiterated the need to “protect the people & restore democracy by removing a dictator” by posting a series of quotes by Latin American liberator Simon Bolivar in Spanish. Among them, one claimed “it is always noble to conspire against tyranny,” and another reads “when tyranny is the law, rebellion is a right.”

Simon Bolivar is a central figure that inspired former Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez’s socialist political movement as well as the Bolivarian Alliance for the Peoples of Our America (ALBA), an alternative form of regional integration for Latin America and the Caribbean created in 2004 to counter the U.S.-backed Free Trade Agreement of the Americas. 

Taking to Twitter on Friday, Venezuela’s National Constituent Assembly president, Delcy Rodriguez, hit back at Rubio, accusing the senator of distorting the intention of Simon Bolivar’s words.

“For certain, Simon Bolivar also said that the United States is destined by providence to plague America with miseries in the name of liberty,” she declared.

“Mr. Marco Rubio you are a faithful representative of the miserable role of U.S. capitalism in ruining humanity and our America,” the former foreign minister added. 

Rubio’s comments come a week after U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson also voiced tacit support for a military coup in Venezuela.

“In the history of Venezuela and South American countries, it is often times that the military is the agent of change when things are so bad, and the leadership can no longer serve the people,” the former ExxonMobil CEO said during a speech at the University of Texas-Austin. 

Tillerson also threatened an oil embargo on the Bolivarian nation that is already suffering a deep economic crisis exacerbated by U.S. sponsored financial sanctions.

On Thursday the U.S. Department of State made a public statement yesterday calling Venezuela’s elections an attempt to “dismantle” democracy. 

Edited and with additional reporting by