Tags: GOP2016 | Marco Rubio | announcement | Miami Heat

Hoops May Force Rubio Out of Freedom Tower Announcement

Image: Hoops May Force Rubio Out of Freedom Tower Announcement
(Brendan Smialowski/AFP/Getty Images)

By    |   Thursday, 02 Apr 2015 10:57 AM

Sen. Marco Rubio may end up making a last-minute switch for his expected presidential campaign announcement next week because the Miami Heat will be in town.

This past weekend, party sources confirmed that the Florida Republican would make his announcement on Tuesday night, with Miami's Freedom Tower being eyed as the most likely location for his speech.

The tower would have been a highly symbolic location, given that Rubio is the son of Cuban immigrants and the tower is where the United States processed thousands of Cuban refugees fleeing dictator Fidel Castro.

However, reports Miami's CBS4, the iconic tower is also across the street from the American Airlines Arena, where the Miami Heat will play the Orlando Magic on Tuesday night at about the same time Rubio had planned to make his speech in hopes of getting live news coverage.

And as the two coinciding events could snarl traffic and create a parking nightmare, Rubio's camp is looking for another location, and according to Politico, the senator's team now has its eye on the Biltmore Hotel.

Rubio spokesman Alex Conant, political adviser Terry Sullivan, and Florida director Todd Reid on Tuesday looked into the Biltmore Hotel in Coral Gables, where Rubio celebrated his victory party in 2010.

But there is a potential conflict, as former Gov. Jeb Bush has his full-time office for his real estate and development business at the Biltmore, and lives very nearby, reports CBS.

Neither potential candidate's camps would comment on the venue issue, and while Biltmore staff would not comment on a possible Rubio event, a concierge said the hotel would welcome him.

Rubio confirmed Monday on Fox News' "The Five" that he will announce his intentions about "what I'm going to do next in terms of running for president or the U.S. Senate."

He has said he won't be running for both offices in 2016, and his team has been lining up donors who have helped previous presidential candidates collect millions of dollars.
Rubio is facing as many as 20 other rivals for the GOP nomination, however, including Bush, his former mentor.

He has also told supporters to check out his website, www.marcorubio.com, which promises a "big announcement." It also allows donors the chance to win tickets for a campaign kickoff for $3.05, a reference to Miami's 305 area code, which will allow the campaign to attract low-dollar donors while building a database of names and addresses.

Rubio, as the son of parents who fled Cuba, would be the nation's first Hispanic president if he wins, but even his announcement may be dwarfed by other candidates' declarations.

Texas Sen. Ted Cruz was first out of the gate on March 23, Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul plans to announce on April 7, and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's launch is expected this month as well.

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Sen. Marco Rubio may end up making a last-minute switch for his expected presidential campaign announcement next week because the Miami Heat will be in town.
Marco Rubio, announcement, Miami Heat
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2015-57-02
Thursday, 02 Apr 2015 10:57 AM
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