Advisers to Florida Sen. Marco Rubio have told ABC News
that he is laying the foundation for a for a bid for the White House in 2016, and that he has asked them to prepare for a campaign, has hired a leading GOP fundraiser, and mapped out an ambitious travel itinerary to visit early-voting primary states in the coming weeks.
"He has told us to proceed as if he is running for president," a senior Rubio adviser told ABC News.
Anna Rogers, currently the finance director for American Crossroads, Karl Rove's political advocacy group, will lead the effort to raise at least $50 million. She will start her work at Rubio's Reclaim America PAC on Feb. 1, and if he runs, is then expected to become finance director of Rubio's campaign.
Aides told ABC News that Rubio will make a final decision about running in the coming weeks but that his schedule suggests a bid is in the cards. According to his schedule, he plans to skip all votes in the Senate next week and take a fundraising swing across the country with several events in California and stops in Texas and Chicago.
On Friday and Saturday, Rubio will meet in Miami with 300 supporters and major donors for an event with his PAC to discuss his political future, ABC News said.
On Jan. 13, he released his book "American Dreams: Restoring Economic Opportunity for Everyone." It outlines his proposals for addressing equal opportunity, economic security, and inequality. He will be visiting a number of early primary states during his book tour, starting with Iowa.
The bilingual 43-year-old Cuban-American has been in the Senate since 2011 and was the former speaker of the Florida Assembly. He is married with four children.
"My family is prepared to support whatever I decide," Rubio said, according to The Daily Beast
Being president means you "live above the shop, you see your family," he said, adding that it's a "very demanding job, I have no illusions about that."
Rubio said that he is weighing his decision based on how best he can serve, whether in the Senate or the White House.
"Both have their own set of opportunities that are alluring," he said, according to The Daily Beast.
Rubio was a member of the Senate's bipartisan "Gang of Eight" who passed an immigration reform package last year. He has also been one of the harshest critics
of the Obama administration's restoring of ties with Cuba.
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