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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Rubio headed to dinner with Obama

10

April

Sen. Marco Rubio is headed to dinner at the White House.

A frequent critic of President Obama's, Rubio accepted an invitation to dine with the president and a handful of other Republicans. It's the second time since the election Obama has reached out to Republicans.

The New York Times said Obama asked Sen. Johnny Isakson of Georgia to put together the invite list, which also ncluded Sens. Lamar Alexander of Tennessee, Arkansas' John Boozman, Maine's Susan Collins, Idaho's Mike Crapo, Wyoming's Michael Enzi, Nebraska's Deb Fischer, Utah's Orrin Hatch, Kansas' Pat Roberts, South Dakota's John Thune and Mississippi's Roger Wicker.

Rubio's attendance was up in the air, his office said, because of a possible meeting on immigration. Now cleared, he can discuss it directly with the president.

 

UPDATE: The dinner ended at 9:17 p.m. A White House official said: "Tonight, the President enjoyed a constructive, wide-ranging discussion with Republican Senators that included reducing the deficit in a balanced way, reforming our broken immigration system and adopting common-sense measures to reduce gun violence. The President thanked Sen Iskason for bringing the group together and was pleased to host the Senators for dinner tonight and looks forward to continuing bipartisan conversations in the weeks and months ahead." 

The menu: green salad, steak and sautéed vegetables.

 

[Last modified: Thursday, April 11, 2013 2:02am]

    

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