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Rubio pushes back against Post article

In a Politico op-ed, Florida Sen. Marco Rubio (R) aggressively pushes back against a Washington Post article charging that he might have embellished the story of his parents' migration to the U.S.

His beef with the article: Its suggestion that being associated to the post-revolution exile community was politically advantageous to Rubio.

That is an outrageous allegation that is not only incorrect, but an insult to the sacrifices my parents made to provide a better life for their children. They claim I did this because “being connected to the post-revolution exile community gives a politician cachet that could never be achieved by someone identified with the pre-Castro exodus, a group sometimes viewed with suspicion.”If The Washington Post wants to criticize me for getting a few dates wrong, I accept that. But to call into question the central and defining event of my parents’ young lives – the fact that a brutal communist dictator took control of their homeland and they were never able to return – is something I will not tolerate.

[snip]

The real essence of my family’s story is not about the date my parents first entered the United States. Or whether they travelled back and forth between the two nations. Or even the date they left Fidel Castro’s Cuba forever and permanently settled here. The essence of my family story is why they came to America in the first place; and why they had to stay.

Meanwhile, Dr. Andy Gomez, an assistant provost and senior fellow at the University of Miami's Institute for Cuban & Cuban-American Studies, emailed several political reporters to take issue with the Post's report.

The Washington Post seems to have very little understanding of the Cuban exile experience and what it means to be an exile. Marco Rubio’s family was forced to stay in America because they refused to live under a communist system. That makes them exiles. It makes no difference what year you first arrived. The fundamental Cuban exile experience is not defined according to what year Cubans left, but rather by the simple, painful reality that they could not return to their homelands to live freely.