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Marco Rubio vows to stand with Israel during speech in West Palm Beach

Republican presidential candidate joins with Jewish leaders at Temple Beth El


WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. – Sen. Marco Rubio is meeting with Jewish and national security leaders during an event Friday in West Palm Beach.

The Republican presidential candidate was speaking at Temple Beth El on Flagler Drive.

Rubio has been candid in his support of Israel throughout his campaign. He has said he wants to strengthen the U.S.-Israeli alliance, while Republican presidential front-runner Donald Trump has said he won't choose a side.

"Let me be abundantly clear -- when I am president, we are going to take a side, and we are going to be on Israel's side," Rubio said Friday. "As I said (during Thursday night's Republican debate), perhaps Mr. Trump does not understand that his position is, in fact, anti-Israeli."

Rubio said Trump would essentially be continuing President Barack Obama's position of neutrality "that has emboldened Israel's enemies in the region."

"When a leading candidate for president ... says that if he's elected president, he will not take sides, the implications are real," Rubio said. "This is a candidate. Imagine if he were president. Presidents do not get a honeymoon period when it comes to foreign policy."

The Florida senator is counting on voters in his home state to help him win the Republican nomination. Rubio's only win was in Minnesota, but he has vowed to stay in the race.

"Donald Trump is not ready for the test," Rubio said.

Rubio said he hasn't given any thought to his political future beyond this election, saying he will either be president or a private citizen come January.