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Big name GOP'ers to help Marco Rubio retire debt

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, Texas Republican John Cornyn and GOP lobbyist and John McCain advisor Charlie Black will be among those attending a Capitol Hill fundraiser tonight to help incoming Senate star Marco Rubio retire some of his campaign debt.

The campaign -- which took in more than $18 million -- still owes more than $700,000, according to Federal Election Commission reports.

Rubio led his rivals handily in most polls for much of the three-way race, but spokesman Alex Burgos said the money gap was the "closing costs of campaign expenses incurred to ensure victory down the stretch.

"We made investments to win the election and these investments paid off," Burgos said. "We never took anything for granted in one of the wildest, most unpredictable races of 2010." The race, one recalls, featured an 11th hour surprise with reports that former President Bill Clinton suggested Kendrick Meek get out of the race so that Charlie Crist could take the seat.

Other members are hosting similar debt retirement parties: Indiana Republican Dan Coates has one tonight as well.