131 Facts About Marco Rubio


Marco Antonio Rubio was born on May 28,1971 and is an American politician and lawyer serving as the senior United States senator from Florida, a seat he has held since 2011.


Marco Rubio suspended his campaign for the presidency on March 15,2016, after losing the Florida Republican primary to the eventual winner of the presidential election, Donald Trump.


Marco Rubio then decided to run for reelection to the Senate, winning a second term later that year.


Marco Rubio ultimately endorsed Trump before the 2016 general election and was largely supportive of Trump during his presidency.


Marco Rubio was reelected to a third term in 2022, defeating Democratic nominee Val Demings.


Marco Antonio Rubio was born in Miami, Florida, the second son and third child of Mario Rubio Reina and Oriales Rubio.


Marco Rubio's parents were Cubans who immigrated to the United States in 1956 during the regime of Fulgencio Batista, two and a half years before Fidel Castro ascended to power after the Cuban Revolution.


Marco Rubio's mother made at least four return trips to Cuba after Castro's takeover, including a month-long trip in 1961.


Some relatives of Marco Rubio's were admitted to the US as refugees.


Marco Rubio enjoyed a close relationship with his grandfather during his childhood.


Marco Rubio asserted that his parents intended to return to Cuba in the 1960s.


Marco Rubio added that his mother took his two elder siblings back to Cuba in 1961 with the intention of living there permanently, but the nation's move toward communism caused the family to change its plans.


Marco Rubio has three siblings: older brother Mario, older sister Barbara, and younger sister Veronica.


Marco Rubio received his first communion as a Catholic in 1984 before moving back to Miami with his family a year later.


Marco Rubio was confirmed and later married in the Catholic Church.


Marco Rubio attended South Miami Senior High School, graduating in 1989.


Marco Rubio attended Tarkio College in Missouri for one year on a football scholarship before enrolling at Santa Fe Community College in Gainesville, Florida.


Marco Rubio has said that he incurred $100,000 in student loans.


Marco Rubio worked on Republican senator Bob Dole's 1996 presidential campaign.


Marco Rubio became a member of the Florida House of Representatives in early 2000.


Marco Rubio campaigned as a moderate, advocating tax cuts and early childhood education.


Marco Rubio placed second in the Republican primary on December 14,1999, but won the runoff election for the Republican nomination, defeating Angel Zayon by just 64 votes.


Marco Rubio spent almost nine years in the Florida House of Representatives.


When Marco Rubio took his seat in the legislature in Tallahassee in January 2000, voters in Florida had recently approved a constitutional amendment on term limits.


Later in 2000, the majority leader of the House, Mike Fasano, promoted Marco Rubio to be one of two majority whips.


Fasano resigned in September 2001 as majority leader of the House due to disagreements with the House speaker, and the speaker passed over Marco Rubio to appoint a more experienced replacement for Fasano.


Marco Rubio volunteered to work on redistricting, which he accomplished by dividing the state into five regions, then working individually with the lawmakers involved, and this work helped to cement his relationships with GOP leaders.


In December 2002, Marco Rubio was appointed House majority leader by Speaker Johnnie Byrd.


Marco Rubio persuaded Speaker Byrd to restructure the job of majority leader, so that legislative wrangling would be left to the whip's office, and Rubio would become the main spokesperson for the House GOP.


Marco Rubio co-sponsored legislation that would have let farmworkers sue growers in state court if they were shortchanged on pay, and co-sponsored a bill for giving in-state tuition rates to the children of undocumented immigrants.


Additionally, an office in the executive branch compiled a longer list of spending requests by legislators, including Marco Rubio, as did the non-profit group Florida TaxWatch.


Many of those listed items were for health and social programs that Marco Rubio has described as "the kind of thing that legislators would get attacked on if we didn't fund them".


For example, Marco Rubio requested a $20million appropriation for Jackson Memorial Hospital to subsidize care for the poor and uninsured, and Marco Rubio later did work for that hospital as a consultant.


On September 13,2005, at age 34, Rubio became speaker after State Representatives Dennis Baxley, Jeff Kottkamp, and Dennis A Ross dropped out.


Marco Rubio was sworn in a year later, in November 2006.


Marco Rubio became the first Cuban American to be speaker of the Florida House of Representatives, and would remain speaker until November 2008.


When he was chosen as future speaker in 2005, Marco Rubio delivered a speech to the House in which he asked members to look in their desks, where they each found a hardcover book titled 100 Innovative Ideas For Florida's Future; but the book was blank because it had not yet been written, and Marco Rubio told his colleagues that they would fill in the pages together with the help of ordinary Floridians.


In 2006, after traveling around the state and talking with citizens, and compiling their ideas, Marco Rubio published the book.


Marco Rubio hired 18 Bush aides, leading capitol insiders to say the speaker's suite was "the governor's office in exile".


An article in National Journal described Marco Rubio's style as being very different from Bush's; where Bush was a very assertive manager of affairs in Tallahassee, Marco Rubio's style was to delegate certain powers, relinquish others, and invite political rivals into his inner circle.


Marco Rubio sued Crist for bypassing the Florida Legislature in order to make a deal with the Seminole Tribe.


The Florida Supreme Court sided with Marco Rubio and blocked the deal.


Marco Rubio was a critic of Crist's strategy to fight climate change through an executive order creating new automobile and utility emissions standards.


Marco Rubio accused Crist of imposing "European-style big government mandates", and the legislature under Marco Rubio's leadership weakened the impact of Crist's climate change initiative.


Marco Rubio's proposal passed the House, but was opposed by Governor Crist and Florida Senate Republicans, who said that the increase in sales tax would disproportionately affect the poor.


So, Marco Rubio agreed to smaller changes, and Crist's proposal to double the state's property tax exemption from $25,000 to $50,000 ultimately passed.


At that point, Marco Rubio assumed responsibility for the payments, and the house was eventually sold.


In 2007, Florida state senator Tony Hill, chairman of the state legislature's Black Caucus, requested that the legislature apologize for slavery, and Marco Rubio said the idea merited discussion.


Marco Rubio helped set up a council on issues facing black men and boys, persuaded colleagues to replicate the Harlem Children's Zone in the Miami neighborhood of Liberty City, and supported efforts to promote literacy and mentoring for black children and others.


Marco Rubio charged about $110,000 during those two years, of which $16,000 was personal expenses unrelated to party business, such as groceries and plane tickets.


Marco Rubio said that he personally paid American Express more than $16,000 for these personal expenses.


In November 2015, Marco Rubio released his party credit card statements for January 2005 through October 2006, which showed eight personal charges totaling $7,243.74, all of which he had personally reimbursed, in most instances by the next billing period.


We are releasing them now because Marco Rubio has nothing to hide.


Marco Rubio has taught undergraduate courses on Florida politics, political parties, and legislative politics.


The university obtained considerable state funding when Marco Rubio was speaker of the Florida House, and many other university jobs were being eliminated due to funding issues at the time FIU appointed him to the faculty.


When Marco Rubio accepted the fellowship appointment as an adjunct professor at FIU, he agreed to raise most of the funding for his position from private sources.


On May 5,2009, Marco Rubio stated his intent to run for the US Senate seat being vacated by Mel Martinez, who had decided not to seek reelection and subsequently resigned before completing his term.


Several of Crist's top fundraisers, as well as Republican leadership, refused to support Crist after Marco Rubio won the Republican nomination.


When Marco Rubio was sworn in to the US Senate, he and Bob Menendez of New Jersey were the only two Latino Americans in the Senate.


Marco Rubio won the Republican primary on August 30,2016, defeating Carlos Beruff.


In November 2020, Marco Rubio announced he would run for a third Senate term in the 2022 election.


Marco Rubio faced Democratic challenger Val Demings, the US Representative for Florida's 10th congressional district and a former police officer.


Shortly after taking office in 2011, Marco Rubio said he had no interest in running for president or vice president in the 2012 presidential election.


In March 2012, when he endorsed Mitt Romney for president, Marco Rubio said that he did not expect to be or want to be selected as a vice presidential running mate, but was vetted for vice president by the Romney campaign.


Marco Rubio believed that Farrar was not assertive enough toward the Castro regime.


Also in 2011, Marco Rubio was invited to visit the Reagan Library, during which he gave a well-publicized speech praising its namesake, and rescued Nancy Reagan from falling.


In March 2011, Marco Rubio supported US participation in the military campaign in Libya to oust Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi.


Marco Rubio urged that Senate leaders bring "a bi-partisan resolution to the Senate floor authorizing the president's decision to participate in allied military action in Libya".


The administration decided that no congressional authorization was needed under the War Powers Resolution; Senator Joe Lieberman joined Marco Rubio in writing an opinion piece for The Wall Street Journal in June 2011 again urging passage of such authorization.


In October 2011, Marco Rubio joined several other senators in pushing for continued engagement to "help Libya lay the foundation for sustainable security".


Marco Rubio voted against the Budget Control Act of 2011, which included mandatory automatic budget cuts from sequestration.


Marco Rubio later said that defense spending should never have been linked to taxes and the deficit, calling the policy a "terrible idea" based on a "false choice".


In 2013, Marco Rubio was part of the bipartisan "Gang of Eight" senators that crafted comprehensive immigration reform legislation.


Marco Rubio proposed a plan providing a path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants currently living in the United States involving payment of fines and back taxes, background checks, and a probationary period; that pathway was to be implemented only after strengthening border security.


The bill passed the Senate 68 to 32 with his support, but Marco Rubio then signaled that the bill should not be taken up by the House because other priorities, like repealing Obamacare, were a higher priority for him; the House never did take up the bill.


Marco Rubio has since explained that he still supports reform, but a different approach instead of a single comprehensive bill.


Marco Rubio was chosen to deliver the Republican response to President Obama's 2013 State of the Union Address.


Marco Rubio voted against publishing the Senate Intelligence Committee report on CIA torture.


Marco Rubio's efforts contributed to the inclusion of a provision in the 2014 federal budget that prevented other funding sources from being tapped to replenish the risk corridors.


In September 2017, Marco Rubio defended Trump's decision to rescind the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program.


Marco Rubio called the program, which provided temporary stay for some undocumented immigrants brought into the US as minors, "unconstitutional".


In 2019, Marco Rubio defended Trump's decision to host the G7 conference at the Trump National Doral Miami, a resort Trump owns.


Marco Rubio called the decision "great" and said it would be good for local businesses.


In 2020, Marco Rubio supported the nomination of Judy Shelton to the Federal Reserve Board of Governors.


Marco Rubio later shifted his rhetoric to saying that concerns from Republican voters over "potential irregularities" in the election demanded redress.


Marco Rubio described the 2021 United States Capitol attack as unpatriotic and "3rd world-style anti-American anarchy".


In February 2021, Marco Rubio voted to acquit Trump for his role in inciting the mob to storm the Capitol.


On May 28,2021, Marco Rubio voted against creating the January 6 commission.


Marco Rubio said in April 2014 that he would not run for reelection to the Senate if he ran for president in 2016, as Florida law prohibits a candidate from appearing twice on a ballot, but at that time he did not rule out running for either office.


Marco Rubio later indicated that even if he would not win the Republican nomination for president, he would not run for reelection to the Senate.


Conda departed to lead Marco Rubio's Reclaim America PAC as a senior adviser.


Groups supporting Marco Rubio raised over $530,000 in the first three months of 2014, most of which was spent on consultants and data analytics, in what was seen as preparations for a presidential campaign.


The poll suggested that Marco Rubio was not disliked by the primary voters, which was thought to be positive for him if other candidates had chosen not to run.


Marco Rubio placed second among potential 2016 Republican presidential candidates in an online poll of likely voters conducted by Zogby Analytics in January 2015.


In January 2015, it was reported that Marco Rubio had begun contacting top donors and appointing advisors for a potential 2016 run, including George Seay, who previously worked on such campaigns as Rick Perry's in 2012 and Mitt Romney's in 2008, and Jim Rubright, who had previously worked for Jeb Bush, Mitt Romney, and John McCain.


Marco Rubio was believed to be a viable candidate for the 2016 presidential race who could attract many parts of the GOP base, partly because of his youthfulness and oratorical skill.


Marco Rubio had pitched his candidacy as an effort to restore the American Dream for middle and working-class families, who might have found his background as a working-class Cuban-American appealing.


The next day Marco Rubio continued turning Trump's attacks against him, even ridiculing Trump's physical appearance.


Around that time, Marco Rubio revealed he was not "entirely proud" of his personal attacks on Trump.


Hours earlier, Marco Rubio had expressed expectations for a Florida win, and said he would continue to campaign "irrespective of" that night's results.


Marco Rubio said only that he would be a "private citizen" by January 2017, leading to some media speculation of the termination of his political career.


Marco Rubio confirmed that he would be attending the 2016 Republican National Convention in Cleveland, Ohio, where he intended to release his pledged delegates to support Trump.


In June 2016, after Trump became the presumptive GOP nominee, Marco Rubio reaffirmed his February 2016 comments that we must not hand "the nuclear codes of the United States to an erratic individual".


However, after Trump won the Republican Party's nomination, Marco Rubio endorsed him on July 20,2016.


Marco Rubio initially won his US Senate seat with strong Tea Party backing, but his 2013 support for comprehensive immigration reform legislation led to a decline in their support for him.


Marco Rubio supports balancing the federal budget, while prioritizing defense spending.


Marco Rubio rejects the scientific consensus on climate change, which is that climate change is real, progressing, harmful, and primarily caused by humans, arguing that human activity does not play a major role and claiming that proposals to address climate change would be ineffective and economically harmful.


Marco Rubio opposes the Affordable Care Act and has voted to repeal it.


Marco Rubio opposes net neutrality, a policy that requires Internet service providers to treat data on the Internet the same regardless of its source or content.


Early in his Senate tenure, Marco Rubio was involved in bipartisan negotiations to provide a pathway to citizenship for 11 million undocumented immigrants while implementing various measures to strengthen the US border; the bill passed the Senate but was blocked by immigration hardliners in the House.


Over time, Marco Rubio distanced himself from his previous efforts to reach a compromise on immigration, and developed more hardline views on immigration, rejecting bipartisan immigration reform efforts in 2018.


Marco Rubio has expressed caution about efforts to reduce penalties for drug crimes, saying that "too often" the conversation about criminal justice reform "starts and ends with drug policy".


Marco Rubio has said that he would be open to legalizing non-psychoactive forms of cannabis for medical use, but otherwise opposes its legalization for recreational and medical purposes.


Marco Rubio has said that if elected president he would enforce federal law in states that have legalized cannabis.


Marco Rubio supports expanding public charter schools, opposes Common Core State Standards, and advocates closing the federal Department of Education.


Marco Rubio supported the 2003 invasion of Iraq and military intervention in Libya.


Marco Rubio voiced support for a Saudi Arabian-led intervention in Yemen against Houthi rebels.


Marco Rubio says that, because background checks cannot be done under present circumstances, the United States cannot accept more Syrian refugees.


Marco Rubio supports working with allies to set up no-fly zones in Syria to protect civilians from Bashar al-Assad.


Marco Rubio has said that gun control laws consistently fail to achieve their purpose.


Marco Rubio is supportive of the Trans Pacific Partnership, saying that the US risks being excluded from global trade unless it is more open to trade.


Marco Rubio is wary of China regarding national security and human rights, and wants to boost the US military presence in that region but hopes for greater economic growth as a result of trading with that country.


Marco Rubio believes the US should support democracy, freedom, and true autonomy of the people of Hong Kong.


Marco Rubio is a co-sponsor of a Senate resolution expressing objection to the UN Security Council Resolution 2334, which condemned Israeli settlement building in the occupied Palestinian territories as a violation of international law.


Marco Rubio condemned Turkey's wide-ranging crackdown on dissent following a failed July 2016 coup.


In March 2018, Marco Rubio defended the decision of the Trump administration to add a citizenship question to the 2020 census.


In July 2018, Marco Rubio offered an amendment to a major congressional spending bill to potentially force companies that purchase real estate in cash to disclose their owners as "an attempt to root out criminals who use illicit funds and anonymous shell companies to buy homes".


In May 2021, Marco Rubio argued that "Wall Street must stop enabling Communist China" in The American Prospect and on his website.


Marco Rubio is a Roman Catholic and attends Catholic Mass at Church of the Little Flower in Coral Gables, Florida.


Marco Rubio previously attended Christ Fellowship, a Southern Baptist Church in West Kendall, Florida.


In 1998, Marco Rubio married Jeanette Dousdebes, a former bank teller and Miami Dolphins cheerleader, in a Catholic ceremony at the Church of the Little Flower.