Senator Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) fired back at Democrats over a bill over BDS, the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement intended to economically pressure Israel in favor of Palestinian political interests.
Rubio sponsored a bill that was criticized by many Democrats, and he responded by accusing them of trying to hide just how extreme their new members of Congress are.
"The shutdown is not the reason Senate Democrats don't want to move to Middle East Security Bill," he said in a tweet.
"A huge argument broke out at Senate Dem meeting last week over BDS," he explained. "A significant [number] of Senate Democrats now support #BDS & Dem leaders want to avoid a floor vote that reveals that."
Rubio faced criticism from many on the left, including Senator Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) who accused him of attempting to curtail constitutional rights through the legislation.
"It's absurd that the first bill during the shutdown is legislation which punishes Americans who exercise their constitutional right to engage in political activity," Sanders said.
"Democrats must block consideration of any bills that don't reopen the government," he added. "Let's get our priorities right."
Rubio directly addressed Sanders and accused him of lying about the bill.
"This is a lie," Rubio tweeted.
"My bill doesn't punish any political activity. It protects the right of local & state govts that decide to no longer do business with those who boycott #Israel," he added. "So boycotting #Israel is a constitutional right, but boycotting those participating in #BDS isn't?"
Rubio also shot back a response to Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-Mich.), known mostly for her profane outburst in favor of impeaching the president, over a bizarre attack about the legislation. She is also the first female Muslim member of Congress.
"They forgot what country they represent," Tlaib said about proponents of Rubio's legislation. "Maybe a refresher on our U.S. Constitution is in order, then get back to opening up our government instead of taking our rights away."
Rubio took her jab as comparable to the "dual loyalty" criticism many make against supporters of Israel, and called it anti-Semitic.
"#BDS isn't about freedom & equality, it's about destroying #Israel," he responded.
"And if boycotting #Israel is constitutionally protected, then boycotting companies that boycott #Israel is also constitutionally protected," he concluded.
The bill is likely to pass in the Senate with some support from Democrats, but its unknown if Democrats will get behind it in the House of Representatives.