A whole lot of Americans are terrified today, which means defense industry stocks are up. Late Thursday night, President Donald Trump, while eating ice cream at Mar-a-Lago, ordered an airstrike that assassinated Qassim Suleimani, the second most powerful person in Iran. Despite the fact that Trump's brain appears to be oxygen-starved and he likely could not pronounce "Suleimani" without a guide written in crayon, a whole lot of foreign policy experts have spent the end of the week opining that assassinating a foreign leader was a noble and right and correct thing to do to keep Americans safe.
There appears to be zero way to confirm any of this will work out well for Americans, Iranians, or the world. In fact, the overwhelming likelihood is the assassination will only make the world a more violent and dangerous place. But the bombing was good for one sector of the American economy: defense contractors. Stock prices for the folks who make tanks, jets, bombs, and the like — including Lockheed Martin, General Dynamics, Raytheon, and Northrop Grumman — are up this week.
Those companies also happen to rain money on politicians — more than $10 million to federal candidates during the 2020 election cycle alone, according to the Center for Responsive Politics. So, using figures from the nonprofit's OpenSecrets website, New Times has compiled a handy list of the amount of money every anti-Iran Florida lawmaker has taken from the people who get rich from war.
Sen. Marco Rubio: $377,378
4. At the direction of #Iran’s Supreme Leader,Soleimani was plotting a coup in #Iraq. He was corrupting/threatening politicians, exploiting Iraq’s resources & bringing a large military force loyal to him,in an effort to make Iraq a platform to attack the U.S. & our allies 2/2— Marco Rubio (@marcorubio) January 3, 2020
Sen. Rick Scott: $73,911
(The National Institute for Money in State Politics notes he took $5,500 during campaigns for Florida governor as well.)
President @realDonaldTrump was faced with a choice: continue the Democrats’ preferred strategy with Iran of sending pallets of unmarked bills and asking them nicely to stop killing Americans or take action. He chose the latter.— Rick Scott (@SenRickScott) January 3, 2020
Read my statement pic.twitter.com/nzxKE77Nng
Rep. Mario Diaz-Balart: $446,350
(2/2) Soleimani was responsible for numerous terrorist acts, instability in the region, & violence. I commend the Trump Admin for ridding the world of this evil man, and for taking the steps necessary to protect Americans and our allies from the terrorist threat posed by Iran.— Mario Diaz-Balart (@MarioDB) January 3, 2020
Rep. Brian Mast: $36,808
Rep. Matt Gaetz: $107,285
The President correctly *responded* to violence & ongoing threats against US personnel after repeated warnings and admirable restraint.— Matt Gaetz (@mattgaetz) January 3, 2020
He did *not* start a regime change war.
Soleimani was trying to escalate violence & draw us into war. https://t.co/9Mv1s37BDz
Rep. Neal Dunn: $35,800
The strikes led to the death of Qassem Soleimani, the known terrorist leader of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps-Quds Force. Soleimani was responsible for the deaths of hundreds of Americans and thousands of Syrians. His reign of terror is now over.— Dr. Neal Dunn (@DrNealDunnFL2) January 3, 2020
Rep. Ted Yoho: $36,000
Yoho has not tweeted but shared this pro-assassination tweet from Ben Shapiro:
Just to get this straight, according to Democrats, giving the Iranian terror regime access to hundreds of billions of dollars with no restrictions on terror use or ballistic missile testing was good, and killing the terrorist responsible for hundreds of American deaths is bad.— Ben Shapiro (@benshapiro) January 3, 2020
Rep. John Rutherford: $136,150
Thank you to our brave men and women in uniform who just eliminated terrorist Qasem Soleimani, who was responsible for the deaths of hundreds of U.S. personnel throughout the Middle East and tens of thousands worldwide. Today is a victory against evil! https://t.co/qXZEf722eH— Rep. John Rutherford (@RepRutherfordFL) January 3, 2020
Rep. Daniel Webster: $28,900
This action by @realDonaldTrump sends a message to Iran & other terrorist organizations that he will take decisive action to protect Americans and our interests. I am grateful for his leadership & thankful for our brave service members around the world who protect our freedoms.— Daniel Webster (@RepWebster) January 3, 2020
Rep. Gus Bilirakis: $27,700
(continued) Soleimani was responsible for the killings of countless American soldiers and whose future imminent attacks against the U.S. were thwarted by this strike. I commend the President and the members of our military who carried out this mission. 2/3— Gus Bilirakis (@RepGusBilirakis) January 3, 2020
Rep. Greg Steube: $1,000
My statement on the death of Qassem Soleimani: pic.twitter.com/XJIc8ys3a7— Congressman Greg Steube (@RepGregSteube) January 3, 2020
Keep Miami New Times Free... Since we started Miami New Times, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Miami, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Miami with no paywalls.