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Marco Rubio Says Parents' Cuba Emigration Story Not Embellished: 'It's Outrageous'

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MARCO RUBIO CUBA EXILES
Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) arrives for a briefing of Senators by administration officials on March 30, 2011 in Washington, DC. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, along with Secretary of Defense Robert Gates, National Intelligence Director James Clapper, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Admiral Mike Mullen, and Deputy Treasury Secretary Neal Wolin, briefed members of the Senate on the U.S. military intervention in Libya. (Photo by Brendan Hoffman/Getty Images) | Getty Images

Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) responded to a Washington Post report alleging that he embellished details about his parents' emigration from Cuba on "The O'Reilly Factor" on Fox News Monday night.

"The bottom line is, it misses the point. I don't need to embellish my narrative. My narrative is very simple -- I am the son of exiles and of immigrants, and that has framed my political thought," he said.

Rubio's official biography stated that his parents "came to America following Fidel Castro's takeover." The Post examined documents showing that Rubio's parents left Cuba over two-and-a-half years before Castro took power in 1959, however. Rubio said that he was going on family lore, but after the Post story was published, his official Senate bio was corrected to say that Rubio "was born in Miami in 1971 to Cuban exiles who first arrived in the United States in 1956."

Rubio also described two years ago to NPR a nine-month wait his mother endured in Cuba while waiting to return to the United States in 1961. Documents showed that his mother and two children arrived in February 1961 and left the following month.

"Look, if they want to say I got the dates wrong, they're right and I admit that, I didn't know, but I got the dates wrong. But if they want to say that my parents weren't exiles and I misled people about the essence of my personal story, that's not fair. It's outrageous. And I really wish they would have corrected their article because I don't think it accurately reflects what I've said or what the essence of my story is," he said on Fox News Monday night.

Rubio also said he is in favor of a flat tax, adding that he was "encouraged" by Herman Cain's 999 tax plan, since he said it forced other candidates to come out with their own tax plans.

In the interview with Bill O'Reilly, Rubio also again ruled out serving as vice president in 2012. "I'm going to say I've been here in the United States Senate for about a year, there's some things I want to finish here." He ruled it out earlier this month at a speech in Washington: "I am not going to be the vice presidential nominee. I am not going to be the vice presidential nominee."

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