Republican presidential candidate Marco Rubio is being criticized for apparently laughing at a voter suggestion to “waterboard Hillary,” referring to waterboarding—which many consider a torture method—at a rally in South Carolina.
Rubio, a senator from Florida, was discussing a proposal to keep the U.S. military on a base in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. “This is a message to the Cuban government and anyone who’s listening. We’re keeping Guantanamo. Forever. It’s a good base,” he said
A person then says, “Let’s waterboard Hillary,” referring to Democratic front-runner Hillary Clinton, according to Time magazine. Waterboarding is an interrogation method that is widely considered to be a form of torture and has been used on terror suspects. It involves pouring water over a cloth covering the recipient’s face, nose, and mouth, causing the individual to experience the sensation of drowning.
Rubio then appears to respond to the comment with a small chuckle. Some liberal-leaning websites seized upon the moment.
Rubio said, “I don’t want to know what he said—please don’t, because then—whatever—the press is here.”
He added: “I didn’t even hear what they—I didn’t hear what they said. I know it wasn’t a bad word, that’s all that matters.”
Some members of the audience quickly reacted to his comment with laughter.
Meanwhile, South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley on Wednesday said she is endorsing Rubio for president.
“I wanted someone with compassion and conviction to do the right thing,” Haley said, according to Fox News. “Ladies and gentlemen, if we elect Marco Rubio, every day will be a great day in America,” the Republican governor added.