Rubio Wipes a Tear When Pope Francis Mentions Many in Congress Are Descendants of Immigrants


Sen. Marco Rubio (R., Fla.) got emotional during Pope Francis' speech to a Joint Session of Congress on Thursday, shown wiping a tear from his eye when the Holy Father mentioned that many in the chamber were descendants of immigrants.

"In recent centuries, millions of people came to this land to pursue their dream of building a future in freedom. We, the people of this continent, are not fearful of foreigners because most of us were once foreigners," Pope Francis said to loud applause. "I say this to you as the son of immigrants, knowing that so many of you are also descendants of immigrants."

The cameras panned to Rubio, a 2016 presidential candidate and a Catholic, who was tearing up at the remarks. On the campaign trail, Rubio often invokes his humble beginnings as the son of Cuban immigrants who achieved the American dream.

"Tragically, the rights of those who were here long before us were not always respected," Pope Francis said. "For those peoples and their nations, from the heart of American democracy, I wish to reaffirm my highest esteem and appreciation. Those first contacts were often turbulent and violent, but it is difficult to judge the past by the criteria of the present."

Pope Francis is the first leader of the Catholic Church to ever address Congress.

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