Politics

Tampa office building asks Rubio office to leave because of disruptive protests

Vocal crowds of demonstrators making weekly visits to the Tampa office of U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio have gotten the Miami Republican booted from the building.
Vocal crowds of demonstrators making weekly visits to the Tampa office of U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio have gotten the Miami Republican booted from the building. Tampa Bay Times

TAMPA — Vocal crowds of demonstrators making weekly visits to the Tampa office of U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio have gotten the Miami Republican booted from the building.

The owner of Bridgeport Center, a gleaming, nine-story office center at 5201 Kennedy Blvd., notified Rubio's office on Feb. 1 that it will not renew its lease. The reason: The rallies have become too disruptive to the other tenants and a costly expense for the company, said Jude Williams, president of America's Capital Partners.

"A professional office building is not a place for that," Williams said. "I understand their cause, but at the end of the day, it was a security concern for us."

Rubio is now faced with the prospect of going without a brick-and-mortar office until a new location can be found. His annual lease expired in December and he has been renting on a month-to-month basis since then, working to negotiate a new agreement, according to his office. The staff needs to leave Suite 530 by Friday and does not have a new location lined up. Negotiations with another building recently fell through.

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