Marco RubioU.S. Senator
Born: 28 May 1971
Birthplace: Miami, Florida
Best known as:
U.S. Senator from Florida, 2011-present
Marco Rubio is the anti-tax, small-government conservative who was elected as a U.S. senator from Florida in 2010. Marco Rubio's parents left Cuba in 1956, a few years before Fidel Castro took power. The family settled in Miami, where Marco Rubio was born in 1971. The family lived in Las Vegas from 1979-85 before returning to Miami, where Rubio graduated from high school. After attending Tarkio College and Santa Fe Community College (in Florida, not New Mexico) he graduated from the University of Florida in 1993, then from University of Miami's law school in 1996. At age 28, Rubio was elected to the Florida House of Representatives in a special election on 25 January 2000. He represented Miami in the 111th House district until 2009, moving up through the ranks to become majority leader and then Speaker of the House from 2006 until 08, when Florida's 8-year term limits ended his time in office. He made a surprise leap to the U.S. Senate in the elections of 2010, buoyed in part by by the anti-tax "Tea Party" wave that year. (Anti-tax crusader Grover Norquist once called Rubio "the most pro-taxpayer legislative leader in the country.") As a senator he has been against President Barack Obama's health care reforms, in favor of a balanced budget amendment, and has repeatedly insisted that the federal government is conducting an "assault on the free enterprise system." His conservative positions, good looks and Hispanic roots made him a rising star in the national Republican party, a position that was reinforced when he was chosen to give the Republican response to Obama's 2013 State of the Union message.
Marco Rubio married his wife, the former Jeanette Dousdebes, in 1998. She is the daughter of immigrants from Colombia. She was a Miami Dolphins cheerleader from 1997-98. They have four children: Amanda, Daniella, Anthony, and Dominic... During his State of the Union response, Marco Rubio ducked awkwardly out of frame to grab a bottle of water and then sipped from it on camera -- a moment that caused much public comment over the following few days.
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