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Exclusive: Marco Rubio's Republican Convention Address

5:33 PM, Aug 30, 2012 • By DANIEL HALPER
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That family is the most important institution in society. That almighty God is the source of all we have.

We’ve never made the mistake of believing that we are so smart that we can rely solely on our leaders or our government.

Our national motto “In God we Trust” reminding us that faith in our Creator is the most important American value of all.

And, we’ve always understood the scriptural admonition that “for everyone to whom much is given, from him much will be required.”

We are a blessed people. And we have honored those blessings with the enduring example of an exceptional America.

I know that for so many of you, these last few years have tested your faith in the promise of America.

Maybe you are at an age when you thought you would be entering retirement. But instead, because your savings and investments are wiped out, you have to go back to work.

Maybe, after years of hard work, this was the time you expected to be your prime earning years. But instead, you’ve been laid off, and your house is worth less than your mortgage.

Maybe you did everything you where told you needed to do to get ahead.

You studied hard and finished school. But now, you owe thousands of dollars in student loans. You can’t find a job in your field. And you’ve moved back in with your parents.

You want to believe we’re still that place where anything is possible. But things just don’t seem to be getting better. And you are starting to wonder if things will ever be the same again.

Yes, we live in a troubled time. But the story of those who came before us, reminds us that America has always been about new beginnings.

If we are willing to do for our children, what our parents did for us, life in America can be better than it has ever been.

My mother was one of seven girls, whose parents went to bed hungry so their children wouldn’t. My father lost his mother when he was nine. He left school, and went to work for the next seventy years.

They emigrated to America with little more than the hope of a better life.

My Dad was a bartender. My Mom was a cashier, a maid, and a stock clerk at K-Mart. They never made it big. They were never rich.

And yet they were successful. Because just a few decades removed from hopelessness, they made possible for us all the things that had been impossible for them.

Many nights I heard my father’s keys jingling at the door as he came home after another 16-hour day. Many mornings, I woke up just as my mother got home from the overnight shift at K-Mart.

When you’re young, the meaning of these moments escapes you. But now, as my own children get older, I understand it better.

My Dad used to tell us: “En este pais, ustedes van a poder lograr todas las cosas que nosotros no pudimos” “In this country, you will be able to accomplish all the things we never could.”

A few years ago during a speech, I noticed a bartender behind a portable bar at the back of the ballroom. I remembered my father who had worked so long as a banquet bartender.

He was grateful for the work he had, but that’s not the life he wanted for us. 

 He stood behind a bar in the back of the room all those years, so one day I could stand behind a podium in the front of a room.

That journey, from behind that bar to behind this podium, goes to the essence of the American miracle… that we’re exceptional not because we have more rich people here.

We’re special because dreams that are impossible anywhere else, come true here.

That's not just my story. That's our story. It's the story of your mother who struggled to give you what she never had.

It's the story of your father who worked two jobs so doors closed for him would open for you.

The story of that teacher or that coach who taught you the lessons that shaped who you are today.

And it's the story of a man who was born into an uncertain future in a foreign country. His family came to America to escape revolution.

They struggled through poverty and the great depression. And yet he rose to be an admired businessman, and public servant.

And in November, his son, Mitt Romney, will be elected President of the United States.

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