MIAMI (CBSMiami) – “I want to congratulate Donald Trump on a big victory in Florida.” With those words, Marco Rubio opened his speech to supporters in Miami Tuesday night after learning Trump won the GOP primary in Rubio’s home state.
“While it is not God’s plan that I be President in 2016 or maybe ever, and while today while today my campaign is suspended, the fact that I’ve even come this far is event of how special America truly is and all the reason more while we must do all that we can to ensure that this nation remains a special place. I ask the people do not give in to the fear, do not give in to the frustration.”
With those words, Marco Rubio’s quest for the White House came to an end. Inside a packed lobby at Florida International University’s arena, Miami’s native son sounded like he left it all on the court.
“I just want you to know there is nothing more we could have done. There is nothing more you could have done. You worked as hard as anyone worked. I want you to know we worked as hard that we ever could.”
Rubio called it a sign of the times. A culmination of a do nothing Congress and an America fed up with it.
“In 2010 the Tea Party wave carried me and others into office because not enough was happening and that Tea Party wave gave Republicans a majority in the House. But nothing changes. In 2014 those same voters gave Republicans a majority in the Senate and still nothing changed. And I blame some of that on the conservative movement.”
Exit polls in Florida showed Republicans are furious and showed it with their vote.
Trump won every demographic and 60% said they felt betrayed by the Republican party.
“Look people are angry and people are very frustrated and it really began in 2008 with this horrifying downturn.”
Suddenly, a protester yelled, “Trump for President!” Rubio responded, “Don’t worry he won’t get beat up at our event.”
“Even at his concession speech, Rubio couldn’t escape the anger and Trump’s reach.
“America is in the middle of a real political storm, a real tsunami, and we should have seen this coming. People are angry and people are very frustrated.”
He made no indication of who he would support moving forward but he did say that the guy who beat him in Florida is doing it all wrong.
“America needs a conservative movement, one that is based on ideas, principles. Not on fear. Not on anger. Not on preying on people’s frustrations.”
With 99 percent of precincts reporting, Trump roughly 47 percent of the vote to Rubio’s 27 percent — a difference of more than 430,000 votes out 2.3 million cast. U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas came in third with 17 percent of vote, and Ohio Gov. John Kasich was a distant fourth with less than 7 percent. The win gives Trump all 99 of Florida’s elected delegates to the Republican National Convention this summer.
Republican Party of Florida Chairman Blaise Ingoglia, who doubles as a state representative, praised Rubio in a statement issued by the party.
“He contributed mindful, substance based arguments and articulated conservative ideals since the start of his presidential bid,” Ingoglia said. “His optimistic message and commitment to American exceptionalism has helped keep conservative values in focus for 2016.”