Immigration Activists to Protest Rubio at Broward College Debate UPDATED

After spending months beefing about where and when they’ll debate, and in what language, Marco Rubio and Patrick Murphy will face each other at Broward College tonight for the second — and likely last — time.

As New Times reported last week, things aren't looking good for Rubio right now. Thanks in part to his insistence on supporting Donald Trump, the latest polls show the race looking too close to call, despite the fact that Rubio is the incumbent and has vastly more name recognition than his bland challenger.

Yesterday, Rubio was booed offstage by a majority Latino crowd at Orlando’s Calle Orange festival. And it looks like he won’t exactly get a warm welcome at the debate either. United Families, a group that advocates for immigration reform, is planning a protest for 5 p.m. tomorrow, just in time for Rubio to arrive at the debate.

“His embrace of Trump and the GOP's anti-immigrant platform would cripple the social and economic fabric of this country,” Elbert Garcia, state director for Florida’s Voice, a project of the immigration reform group America's Voice, explains. “The fact that Rubio, a child of immigrants, has turned his back on comprehensive immigration reform and instead favors an enforcement-first strategy that would deport millions and end temporary status for DACA students is a painful betrayal of someone who many had hoped would be our champion in the Senate.”

Other activists plan to protest his stances on reproductive rights, climate change, the minimum wage, and Puerto Rico, Garcia says.

The protest is also doubling as an opportunity to remind people about early voting. The Love Bus, a nonpartisan collaboration between Miami artists, racial justice groups, and immigrant rights advocates that is shuttling people to early voting sites this week, will also be there to spread the word.

Tune in at 7 p.m. to find out if Rubio gets booed off the stage again. 

Correction: This story has been updated to reflect the fact that the protest is being organized by United Families. Members of SEIU, Florida Immigrant Coalition Votes, and America's Voice will be in attendance, but these groups are not responsible for planning the event. 
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Antonia Farzan is a fellow at New Times. After receiving a master’s degree in journalism from Columbia University, she moved to South Florida to pursue her dream of seeing a manatee and meeting DJ Khaled (ideally at the same time). She was born and raised in Rhode Island and has a BA in classics from Hamilton College.