Friday, October 21, 2011

U.S. Senator Marco Rubio Has Not Changed His Family Story

As of 6 a.m. EDT, U.S. Senator Marco Rubio has not taken down the embellished story on his official U.S. Senate website biography which states:

"In 1971, Marco was born in Miami to Cuban-born parents who came to America following Fidel Castro's takeover." 

This is in spite of a Washington Post article published yesterday that claims that immigration documents demonstrate that the junior Florida Senator's family actually arrived in the United States before Fidel Castro took power in Cuba.

One might ask, "Why does it matter whether Rubio's family came before or after Castro took power?"

But in the South Florida Cuban community, Cuban immigrants distinguish their families into three groups of immigration waves: Pre-Castro revolution, post-Castro revolution, and post-Mario boat lift.

Each immigration wave implies different characteristics about the immigrant family with their role in Cuban history over the last 60 years such as whose family was more likely to have participated in the Bay of Pigs operation to restore democracy to the island nation. 

The three immigration waves also imply the level of difficulty the family would have faced to reach the American shore.

Think of it as akin to the Mayflower lineage that is the pride of many New Englanders who take great pain trace back their pedigree.

According to the Washington Post article, Marco Rubio said that he was simply relying on the oral history of his family rather actual immigration documents when he made the claim that his family arrived in the U.S. after Fidel Castro took power.