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MIAMI (CBSMiami) – In 2009 when Marco Rubio announced he was running for Senate he did it on Spanish television. The next day he launched a website. Simply put no one counted on him to beat Charlie Crist. He did it with the help of the tea party.
Tonight Rubio is back, looking to repeat history by beating the odds.
Miami’s native son made the announcement inside Miami-Dade College’s Freedom tower, a building that once served to process Cuban exiles immigrating to the U.S.
“I chose to make this announcement at the Freedom Tower because it’s truly the symbol of our nation’s identity of a land of opportunity,” Rubio said during his speech on Monday.
Rubio wasn’t processed at the Freedom Tower. He actually arrived before Castro took power.
Regardless his immigrant story is the foundation of his campaign.
“I live in an exception country where the son of a bartender and a maid can have the same dreams and the same future as those who come from power and privilege,” he said.
At 43, the Senator has overcome incredible odds, going from a West Miami City commissioner to Speaker of the Florida House.
In 2010 he did the improbable – defeating Charlie Crist. He did it without major endorsements or the GOP supporting him. To win the presidency he may have to do it again.
“I’ve heard some suggest that I should step aside and wait my turn. But I cannot. Because I believe that are very identity of exceptionalism is at stake and I can make a difference as President,” he said.
Rubio is the youngest Republican to run thus far, and he thinks that’s a good thing.
“We must change the decisions we are making, by changing the people who are making them,” he said.
He even took a shot at former first lady Hillary Clinton who announced Sunday she will run.
“Yesterday, a leader from yesterday, began a campaign for President by promising to take us back to yesterday. Yesterday is over.”
Rubio is now looking ahead to the next 19 months. He heads back to Washington tomorrow.
As Senator he will have to relinquish his seat to run for President. In Florida you cannot hold onto an office while running for another.