WASHINGTON – Sen. Marco Rubio on Sunday criticized the way Andrew McCabe was fired.

"I don't like the way it happened. He should've been allowed to finish through the weekend," Rubio said of the dismissal of the now former FBI deputy director, who has long been a target of President Donald Trump and his allies.

"We need to be very careful about taking these very important entities and smearing everybody in them with a broad stroke."

Appearing on Meet the Press, Rubio said McCabe could be called back before the Senate Intelligence Committee, which is still probing Russian meddling in the election.

CHUCK TODD: Are you concerned about damage this does to the F.B.I., to the office of professional responsibility who apparently made this recommendation and the Justice Department itself?

RUBIO:

Yeah, I just don't like this whole, you know, back and forth between the people outside the F.B.I. and in it. These agencies, the F.B.I., the C.I.A. I mean, all of these agencies are made up of thousands of people who are out there working every day. You know, the field offices around the countries, many of whom are far removed from any of the drama in Washington. They're just out there doing their work every single day. I would hate to demoralize the workforce. And more importantly, I would hate to discourage new people from coming into that. So I just don't like the whole tone. I don't like the fact they're in the news every day. I think both sides of this debate have done this from time to time. There was certainly a lot of criticism of Comey from Democrats when they didn't like how he handled the Hillary probe. So they're not above reproach. There are ways to hold them accountable. But I think we need to be very careful about taking these very important entities and smearing everybody in them with a broad stroke.

TODD: Now you're on the Senate Intelligence Committee. Andrew McCabe says he believes he was fired because of the role he played and the actions he took and the events he witnessed in the aftermath of James Comey's firing. This apparently is based on testimony he gave to the House Intelligence Committee. Do you believe the Senate Intel Committee should call McCabe back to testify?

RUBIO:

Potentially. But ultimately, people have to understand our probe is different from the Special Counsel. Our probe is about election security, about the methods, about breakdowns in our intelligence system if they happen in terms of identifying Russian interference. We're not a criminal justice probe. We're not prosecutors. We are looking at what happened, how Russia did it and what we can do in the future to prevent that sort of interference in our election. And so that's what we're focused on. And to the extent that he has something to contribute towards that, we should talk to him again. The other stuff about collusion and the like, in the process of looking at everything, you may or may not run into something about that. But that's the Special Counsel's focus.

TODD:

You know, the president tweeted about the Special Counsel late last night. He said this, "The Mueller probe should never have been started and that there was no collusion and there was no crime. It was based on fraudulent activities and a fake dossier paid for by Crooked Hillary and the DNC. And improperly used in FISA Court for surveillance of my campaign. Witch hunt." Is there anything about that tweet that you think is factually correct?

RUBIO:

Well, I would just say this about the Special Counsel. The Special Counsel is not simply looking at collusion. They're, they're, they're looking at the entire thing and what happened with regards to Russian interference and whether there was any U.S. laws broken in the process of Russian interference in our elections. That is what they're looking at. It is not a collusion probe. It is much broader than that. Now obviously, once you open that up and you start looking you can go in one direction or another. You go where the evidence takes you and that's what I support. I support going wherever the evidence and wherever the facts take us. And again, that's why leaks are bad. That's why all this other speculation out there is bad. I remain confident that the Special Counsel is gonna, is going to conduct a probe that is fair and thorough and is gonna arrive at the truth and is, and is not going to go down rabbit holes that are not places that we need to be going.

TODD:

I want to ask you about this news about Cambridge Analytica and, frankly, the news that Facebook may have known in the summer of '16 that 50 million — that sort of the profiles of 50 million Facebook users were somehow in the hands of a, of a political consulting firm really without their knowledge. And they have testified before your committee. Have they been forthcoming to you? Do you think Facebook has told you the extent of everything that was done with their users?

RUBIO:

No I don't. And, and I think we've learned that the hard way. Every time that we've spoken to them it's kind of rolled out as more coming out. Look, these companies have grown very fast. Within the span of less than ten years, they've gone from being a novel idea to a major corporation. And, and I'm not sure if the sort of institutional knowledge about the responsibilities both legal and ethical that come with that have kept pace with their growth. Their growth has been a lot faster than perhaps their ability to mature institutionally from within on some of these challenges that they're facing. I think another part about it is sometimes these companies grow so fast and get so much good press they get up high on themselves that they start to think that perhaps they're above sort of the rules that apply to everybody else. So we'll learn more about this in the days to come. But yeah I'm disturbed by that. I'm disturbed by the fact that Facebook has created filters to help the Chinese government censor. And they're begging to get back into China. There's a lot I'm disturbed about in these things.

TODD: By the way, we're going to see the reelection, we should probably put that in quotes, of Vladimir Putin today —

RUBIO:

Yeah.

TODD:

— in Russia. And we, we found out what he did in Britain. The Brits, the Germans and we're standing behind them. But the president himself hasn't stood — hasn't been as confrontational with Putin as many, I know like you, would like to see him. There's proportionate responses to Putin. But he doesn't even respond well to that. What should be done to get Putin to stop doing what he's been doing?

RUBIO:

Well, ultimately when it comes to the U.K. incident, I mean, that is an attack on an ally in a NATO nation. So I'm not saying that the response should be a military response. But I most certainly think it should be a comprehensive and coordinated response. And our allies, if we truly have an alliance with the U.K. that involves other countries like Germany and France, all the members of NATO, all of these nations should be coming together with a collective response, whether it's more — whether it's additional sanctions or additional diplomatic actions, combined with some other perhaps NATO buildups and protective status increments. All of these things should be done in conjunction and together. There's got to be a collective response to this. Vladimir Putin is a cost-benefit analyzer. He is — he is now going to weigh the costs and the benefits of the action he took. And if the benefits outweigh the cost he will do it again. He could do it again here inside the United States.

TODD:

All right. I finally want to ask you about the tragedy down at FIU, a school that's very important to you, frankly my home town. It's very — it's been a tremendous source of pride for South Florida. But I want to ask you a question that an anguished uncle of a victim, Alexa Duran, has, is asking this morning in the paper. "Why they had to build this monstrosity in the first place to get children across the street. Then they decided to stress-test this bridge while traffic was running underneath it." Obviously there's a lot of investigating to do. But that , frankly, that's the first question I think a lot of people have. Why were they testing this the way they did it?

RUBIO:

Well, I don't think it's clear that there was testing going on. I think what we do know is that there was work ongoing. There were these rods that go inside, like cables. And they were being tightened. And they call it, you know, post-tension application. And it is during that work that the bridge collapsed beginning on the north end. Now obviously whether the work was the cause of it or not remains to be seen. I think clearly just from a laymen's perspective the fact that they were working on it actively at the time of its collapse leads you to believe it could have. The NTSB is on site. They've already taken samples. They're going to take entire chunks of that bridge for testing. We are going to know how — why this failed. And primarily for the purposes of making sure it never happens again. And so, I don't — but it's going to take a while. These are not quick investigations. But we will know the truth and we will know it in its entirety.