Rubio Tells Donors He's Running for President

Republican Senator Marco Rubio tells donors he is launching a presidential campaign ahead of launch event in Miami.

Elad Benari ,

Senator Marco Rubio
Senator Marco Rubio

Republican Senator Marco Rubio announced to donors Monday that he is launching a presidential campaign, AFP reports.

American media reported that Rubio told major donors on a conference call about his plans, hours ahead of a glitzy launch event in Miami where he is expected to present himself as the next-generation candidate in the candidate.

Rubio's staff, while not directly confirming the announcement, re-tweeted a news report that the senator was running for president.

The 43-year-old first-term senator aims to contrast himself with older contenders like fellow Floridian Jeb Bush, and Democrat frontrunner Hillary Clinton, who announced her candidacy on Sunday.

Rubio wants to take Americans beyond the dynastic Bush-Clinton dynamic that has ruled U.S. politics for much of the last quarter century.

Bush, who expected to officially announce his candidacy in the coming weeks, is the son and brother of two presidents, while Clinton is the wife of former president Bill Clinton and was Obama's first secretary of state.

Rubio joins two other Republican first-term senators who are already in the race: Ted Cruz of Texas, who like Rubio is Cuban-American, and Kentucky's Rand Paul, a libertarian-leaning lawmaker whose father Ron Paul ran for president several times.

Rubio has expressed support for Israel and in 2013 visited the Jewish state, where he met Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and then-President Shimon Peres.

He is a fierce critic of the policies of President Barack Obama, having recently accused Obama of not supporting Israel enough, saying Obama’s foreign policy “treats the ayatollah of Iran with more respect than the prime minister of Israel.”

Rubio recently delivered a powerful speech against Obama's increasing hostility towards Israel after Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu's elections victory.