Marco Rubio attracts more than 1,000 at book signing in North Naples

David Albers/Staff
- U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio signs copies of his new autobiography, An American Son, at the Naples Costco on Sunday, July 1, 2012.

Photo by DAVID ALBERS // Buy this photo

David Albers/Staff - U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio signs copies of his new autobiography, An American Son, at the Naples Costco on Sunday, July 1, 2012.

Video from NBC-2

— George Pappas feels a kinship with Marco Rubio.

Like Florida's junior senator, whose parents came to Florida from Cuba, Pappas is a child of immigrants. Pappas' father, John, arrived in the United States from Greece at age 16 and joined the Army for World War I, which earned him citizenship.

"I didn't become a senator, but I can still relate to him as an immigrant's son too," Pappas said.

After Sunday, Pappas and Rubio share something else: a picture. Pappas joined more than 1,000 people Sunday afternoon in North Naples as Rubio signed copies of his new book, "American Son: A Memoir," and snapped photos with supporters for about an hour and a half. The stop at Costco on Naples Boulevard was Rubio's first of three Sunday, with his bus tour later parking in Sarasota and Tampa.

Rubio's memoir recounts his family's move from Cuba to Florida, where his parents, a bartender and a maid, sometimes struggled financially.

"As much as anything else, this book is a tribute to them and a tribute to our life story," Rubio said during a break Sunday.

The book also recalls how Rubio became a young star in national politics, spending nearly a decade in the Florida House before launching a long-shot — at least initially — U.S. Senate campaign that landed him in Washington.

Now a bright star in the Republican Party, Rubio attracted supporters Sunday — and a smattering of protesters outside — as customers snaked through Costco's furniture section, waiting in line for a signature or picture. Many arrived because Rubio could soon join Mitt Romney on the Republican presidential ticket. (As he has for weeks, Rubio kept mum about the topic.)

"I think he could be a great vice president," said Linda Marszalkowski, who walked out of the store cradling five copies of Rubio's book — at $26.95 each — in her arms. "He's young, he exudes integrity, and I don't think you see that in many politicians today."

Naples resident Camille Laz said the 41-year-old senator could energize the Republican base and attract key voter demographics if selected for the ticket.

"I think it's very important for the Hispanic vote, but not only that, he's someone who's very articulate that could help as vice president," Laz said as she left, a signed copy of the book in hand.

Sunday's crowd impressed Naples resident Ellen Schmidt, who showed her support by holding a two-sided sign. One side read "I heart Marco." The other: "Marco for VP."

"I think this is wonderful and it's a good sign for November," Schmidt said. "I feel he would do something to help the immigration problem, would help senior citizens, and would help all people in the state as far as Obamacare."

Rubio briefly touched on the health care issue, echoing Gov. Rick Scott's concerns about President Barack Obama's signature health care law upheld last week by the U.S. Supreme Court. Scott said Florida will not expand its Medicaid program as outlined in the Affordable Care Act because it will cost taxpayers $1.9 billion per year.

"There's a good reason for that," Rubio said. "Florida's on the hook for that. Florida will have to take money from higher education. Florida will have to take from transportation and other programs to fund Obamacare at the state level."

© 2012 Naples Daily News. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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Comments » 52

SunshineBoy writes:

This event allowed non Costco members in. I walked out as I could not shop. Will sign up for Sam's Club or B.J's who won't be so s-----.

staghorn writes:

never trust a republican©

PoliticalBear writes:

1000 people for a book signing! Hope you all help the GOP win! Volunteer @ your local office -call to ask how you can help...don't have any regrets -Don't watch on the sidelines -and let the 'other ' people work! And, put your money where your mouth is,too!

WadeGarrett (Inactive) writes:

in response to staghorn:

never trust a republican©

Never trust a democrat that mandates a tax disguised as free health care.

Francophile2 writes:

President Obama 2012!

Klaatu writes:

Who wrote it for him?

Did he include his attempt for a strategic default on the house he owned in Tally with Rivera ?

How about his misadventures with his GOP credit card?

Or was it all fluff ?????

donsense writes:

I was not there. Did he sell more than 1000 books?
How did his hair look? $100 haircut?
I would like him more if he gave up politics. Not that savvy.

big_peach_e writes:

Did anyone ask him about his pal Rivera? Guess not. Anyone ask him if he still collects a state check for his do nothing appointed job at FIU in Miami? Guess not. Anyone ask him about his sweetheart loans and foreclosure? Guess not. Anyone ask him how he sold out his gente, the Latinos by not speaking out against the racial profiling in Arizona? Guess not.

artdude writes:

950 people showed up to buy huge bottles of ketchup for their July 4th Bar B Q. The other 10 came with Rubio.

A few folks came by for advice on how to default on a house and save money without going to jail.

The Cuban Dan Quayle

naples759 writes:

i heard he parked himself next to the lady passing out hummus on pita chips in a little paper cup.

this would give him a lot of exposure.

if romney shows up he should park himself next to the lady with the costco chicken pot pie.

everybody will flock to that.

naples759 writes:

"I think this is wonderful and it's a good sign for November," Schmidt said. "I feel he would do something to help the immigration problem, would help senior citizens, and would help all people in the state as far as Obamacare."

he can't do any of that as long as romney is president. all the vp does is sit on the side lines and look pretty.

remember that's all he'll be, a bridesmaid.

Redshoulderedhawk writes:

I wonder who actually wrote the book.

Philly writes:

in response to artdude:

950 people showed up to buy huge bottles of ketchup for their July 4th Bar B Q. The other 10 came with Rubio.

A few folks came by for advice on how to default on a house and save money without going to jail.

The Cuban Dan Quayle

Artdude = another democrat that can't count. 950+10 = 960. Moron.

Doubtful1 writes:

in response to staghorn:

never trust a republican©

More importantly, never ever trust a democrat, especially not the one in the White House.

WadeGarrett (Inactive) writes:

in response to Redshoulderedhawk:

I wonder who actually wrote the book.

It wasn't Joe Biden. He couldn't write a thought on a piece of Obama TP.

romneygate writes:

in response to cayenne:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Where will Romney and the Republicans build the camps?

romneygate writes:

in response to WadeGarrett:

It wasn't Joe Biden. He couldn't write a thought on a piece of Obama TP.

It sounds like you have a Romney autographed toilet seat.

Chester writes:

in response to Francophile2:

President Obama 2012!

Equals bankruptcy 2014!

Chester writes:

in response to Redshoulderedhawk:

I wonder who actually wrote the book.

Probably the same moron that wrote Obumbles manifesto, I mean his book!

WadeGarrett (Inactive) writes:

in response to romneygate:

It sounds like you have a Romney autographed toilet seat.

Sounds like you are the toilet seat. Get a life, ET!

Chester writes:

in response to artdude:

950 people showed up to buy huge bottles of ketchup for their July 4th Bar B Q. The other 10 came with Rubio.

A few folks came by for advice on how to default on a house and save money without going to jail.

The Cuban Dan Quayle

And Obumbles gave advise today on how to kill an American Border Patrol Agent and cover it up! Obumbles lied, and an agent died! Remember, it's not a tax, its a mandate! What a lying POS!

WadeGarrett (Inactive) writes:

in response to Chester:

And Obumbles gave advise today on how to kill an American Border Patrol Agent and cover it up! Obumbles lied, and an agent died! Remember, it's not a tax, its a mandate! What a lying POS!

Welcome to Amerika comrade. We shall vote this November, reich?

romneygate writes:

in response to WadeGarrett:

Sounds like you are the toilet seat. Get a life, ET!

After you butch.

woodguru writes:

in response to big_peach_e:

Did anyone ask him about his pal Rivera? Guess not. Anyone ask him if he still collects a state check for his do nothing appointed job at FIU in Miami? Guess not. Anyone ask him about his sweetheart loans and foreclosure? Guess not. Anyone ask him how he sold out his gente, the Latinos by not speaking out against the racial profiling in Arizona? Guess not.

He did not speak out about millions of people sneaking into our country and bankrupting entire cities, thanks for the heads up there Juan. He and Mitt now have my vote.

romneygate writes:

in response to Chester:

Equals bankruptcy 2014!

Well, get a job then. You can't live off the fat of the lamb forever.

namsod writes:

As a Costco Advocate - very disappointed they would use their great store for pushing a political agenda

dixielee writes:

in response to namsod:

As a Costco Advocate - very disappointed they would use their great store for pushing a political agenda

makes me wander if you would feel the same way if that dumb a-- in Washington was signing his "Dreams of my Father" book at Costco's

staghorn writes:

in response to dixielee:

makes me wander if you would feel the same way if that dumb a-- in Washington was signing his "Dreams of my Father" book at Costco's

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Colorado (Inactive) writes:

in response to naples759:

"I think this is wonderful and it's a good sign for November," Schmidt said. "I feel he would do something to help the immigration problem, would help senior citizens, and would help all people in the state as far as Obamacare."

he can't do any of that as long as romney is president. all the vp does is sit on the side lines and look pretty.

remember that's all he'll be, a bridesmaid.

Let me see. That means you think Cheney looked pretty???

volochine writes:

As someone familiar with the book market, if you are signing your newly-released books in a Costco parking lot, your book might be a failure.

Truth be told, Sen. Rubio has no clue about the truth, there will always be a thousand people in a parking lot of a Costco. Rubio is a marketing machine to raise money for the Rubio wallet. He lost his credit card. Costco a great retailer from the democratic area of the Pacific NorthWest.

I did watch his interview with Jon Stewart. How tall is this guy? He looked shorter than Jon Stewart and that is hard to do.

titanbite writes:

in response to WadeGarrett:

Never trust a democrat that mandates a tax disguised as free health care.

Never trust anyone who screams about,"personal responsibility,all while doing their darnedest to shirk their own,"personal responsibility"!

Buy healthcare or forever be known as a hypocritical freeloader!

LOLOLOL!

1234567890 writes:

More than 1000 stupids,

Captian_Cataracts writes:

And just when is the book burning? Do I need to wear my jackboots & swastiKKKa armband & brownshirt?

Max_Headroom writes:

in response to Francophile2:

President Obama 2012!

.... to be unemployed in 2013!

Therealist writes:

Oh, a politician making money off their tax-funded "fame". Cute.

wonderful (Inactive) writes:

in response to Max_Headroom:

.... to be unemployed in 2013!

The country needs Bain NOW!

G-----

Gifted1 writes:

in response to SunshineBoy:

This event allowed non Costco members in. I walked out as I could not shop. Will sign up for Sam's Club or B.J's who won't be so s-----.

Perfect. One less tool to deal with the other 364 days a year...LOL

Gifted1 writes:

in response to Philly:

Artdude = another democrat that can't count. 950+10 = 960. Moron.

Where did he say he agreed with the 1000 count by the side line reporter?....Moron.

Gifted1 writes:

in response to WadeGarrett:

Welcome to Amerika comrade. We shall vote this November, reich?

Spew all the hate you want. Has anyone located the WMD's yet?.....LOL

nativeonepointtwo writes:

There was a longer line at the boisterous carmel popcorn lady near the checkout. Now that woman can sell!

futboldad writes:

JOHNNY BRAVO! OF THE GOP., LMAO. If the suit fits wear it Marco. GOP needed a woman to counter Hillary, so they thought and got Palin, lol. Need hispanic vote now and they strum up Marco..............??? lol.

dixielee writes:

in response to staghorn:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

naples759 writes:

most view story and only 46 posts? you (ndn) wishes there were more.

he's a flash in the pan. he still has to sell himself in 49 other states...

naples759 writes:

what's with the cop in the background? taxpayers are paying for security for this guy who is hawking books next to the hummus-on-pita-chip lady at costco?

he's not that important...

Chester writes:

in response to romneygate:

Well, get a job then. You can't live off the fat of the lamb forever.

I've got a job, Socrates but it really won't matter when Obumbles bankrupts the country because people like you walk around in a daze saying, "yes we can." Your guy is an empty suit and has failed, miserably!

naples759 writes:

so he's hopes the ticket will be cisco and pancho... wasn't romney's dad born in mexico??? was romney's dad a citizen???

trump oughta check that out...

Chester writes:

in response to Gifted1:

Spew all the hate you want. Has anyone located the WMD's yet?.....LOL

When is Gitmo shutting down? We're still at war in Afghanistan, so where are the anti war protesters? LOL! All phonies, just like Obumbles! Who killed Brian Terry the Border Agent? Does Obumbles and Stedman know or care? What are they covering up???

Chester writes:

in response to Captian_Cataracts:

And just when is the book burning? Do I need to wear my jackboots & swastiKKKa armband & brownshirt?

No, just wear your new Black Panther Party uniform and hang out in front of voting booths! Don't worry, Stedman won't prosecute you!

Pragmatic1 writes:

This is Naples.

You can draw 1,000 retired folks with nothing better to do to watch a dog fight.

2,000 if you throw in free doughnuts.

staghorn writes:

in response to dixielee:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

I don't call you names and never have called you names. You just exemplify your ignorance of that 'typical republican' that can do nothing else but call others names. I have a good education and have achieved far more that you can even dream. Your education must not be past 8th grade level, but hey I will give you credit you made it that far. I was born in Ocoee Florida there stars and bars. Nice try but again, get an education while there is time.

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