Marco Rubio officially announced his run for US president tonight before a crowd of hundreds at Miami's iconic Freedom Tower, the Miami Herald reports. "In many countries, the highest office in the land is reserved for the rich and powerful," said the 43-year-old son of Cuban immigrants. "But I live in an exceptional country where even 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." Why the Freedom Tower? That's where tens of thousands of Cuban immigrants were processed in the 1960s when fleeing Castro's Cuba, the Miami New Times notes. Now, laments Rubio, too many Americans "are starting to doubt" the American dream, Politico reports.
The first-time Florida senator also took a swipe at just-announced candidate Hillary Clinton, reports CNN, saying that "just yesterday, a leader from yesterday began a campaign for president by promising to take us back to yesterday." Some 3,500 people requested tickets for tonight's event, his staff said, and some watched from a Jumbotron across the street. Rubio had already told top donors that he's running for president, saying in a conference call this morning that he's "uniquely qualified" to talk about the future. More on Rubio:
- Rubio has come far and fast, notes Time, which traces his rise back to what it calls "The Hug," in 2009.
- The Washington Post takes a look at Rubio's "tight-knit, fiercely loyal cast of characters," including his wife, top staffers, and donors.
- The Post also runs down six things to know about Rubio, from his ability to "spit" rap lyrics to his "inconvenient friend."