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Rubio Stumps In Sarasota

Sen. Marco Rubio poses with supporters after the event
Steve Newborn/WUSF
Marco Rubio poses with supporters after the event

Florida Senator and Republican presidential candidate Marco Rubio made a rare appearance in the Tampa Bay area today, speaking at a boat manufacturer in Manatee County. 

He came to Sarasota for a long-planned fundraiser, and added on a last-minute campaign stop with about 300 people at boat manufacturer Marine Concepts.

There, he spoke for more than a half hour on lowering taxes to make America competitive globally, keeping the prison open at Guantanamo Bay, and promising a more robust campaign in the fight against terrorists.

'Here in America, anyone who works hard can leave their children better off than themselves. This is the real American dream," he said. "But today, it is dying. It's not dying because our people have changed. They haven't. It's dying because both parties in Washington - quite frankly, both parties - have let us down.

Marco Rubio
Credit Steve Newborn / WUSF News

"If you elect me president," he continued, "the United States of America will return and re-embrace the principles that made America great. We will put the false promise of big government behind us, and we will once again embrace the power of a free people and a free country, to create a more prosperous nation."

To do that, Rubio said taxes that stifle small businesses have to be reined in, adding that there are no new taxes that can lead to economic growth. He also called for abolishing the federal Department of Education and improving ties with Israel.

He also took a few swipes at the Democratic front-runner for president.

"I can't wait to run against Hillary Clinton," he said. "Number one, because we can beat her. Number two, Hillary Clinton is disqualified from being president of the United States. She handled classified information irresponsibly, and she lied to the families of those four victims in Benghazi."

Click here to listen to Marco Rubio's complete speech

Steve Newborn is a WUSF reporter and producer at WUSF covering environmental issues and politics in the Tampa Bay area.
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