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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Rubio's arc on full display as bus tour begins



THE VILLAGES — Six months ago, Marco Rubio had to put up with pundits speculating about when he would drop his hopeless campaign for U.S. Senate and run instead for attorney general.

On Tuesday, as Rubio launched a high profile bus tour through Central Florida, he fended off questions about running for president in 2012.

"I have my hands full with this election. I'm not going to be a vice presidential or presidential contender," he said of the conservative commentators lately touting him as a White House contender. "Just the fact that I'm addressing it embarrasses me."

It has been an extraordinary rise for the 38-year-old former state House speaker, who is leading Gov. Charlie Crist by double digits in every recent poll and on Tuesday capped the opening of his "Take a Stand'' bus tour with a Fox News interview by Sean Hannity before a cheering crowd of thousands at the Villages retirement community near Leesburg.

Read the rest of the story by Adam C. Smith.

[Last modified: Thursday, September 9, 2010 11:28am]


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