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A booster takes a payload to the International Space Station. / NASA via Getty Images

WASHINGTON - Democrat Gabriel Rothblatt may be a political newcomer in Florida politics, but he says his bid for a U.S. House seat is just the beginning.

He has his sights set on higher office. "My goal is to become the first governor of a city in space," Rothblatt told USA TODAY. "I want to be the Ponce de Leon of the stars."

Rothblatt, 31, is an unabashed enthusiast for space exploration and is running to represent Florida's Space Coast, home to NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral.

He comes from a family of people who dream big.

His parents, Martine and Bina Rothblatt, helped found the Terasem Movement, which says people can live forever by building "mindfiles," or digital replicas of their thoughts, emotions and memories. (Martine Rothblatt, formerly known as Martin, founded several companies, including Sirius Satellite Radio. She underwent gender reassignment surgery in 1994.)

It's an understatement to say Rothblatt faces steep odds in November. He's running to oust three-term GOP Rep. Bill Posey, who won his last election with nearly 59% of the vote.

In May, Rothblatt emerged as the Democratic nominee against Posey when a better-financed rival failed to submit a key document to qualify for the ballot.

He said his swift rise is another sign that "this is where the universe wants me to be."

Follow @fschouten on Twitter.



Copyright 2014USAToday

Read the original story: House bid a stepping stone for space-focused candidate

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