When Florida Senator Marco Rubio suspended his presidential campaign, he announced he would complete his term as senator, then return to life as a private citizen. Now, he’s reconsidering that decision, and may even launch a re-election campaign.
Rubio’s friend, Florida Lt. Gov. Carlos Lopez-Cantera, is currently to succeed him in the senate, but the two men met Sunday, due to the Orlando terror attack, and Lopez-Cantera has offered to step aside if Rubio wishes to re-enter the race.
Rubio told reporters at the Capitol on Wednesday that he is re-considering his decision not to run for re-election. “Obviously, I take very seriously everything that’s going on — not just Orlando, but in our country,” Rubio said. “I enjoy my service here a lot, so I’ll go home later this week, and I’ll have some time with my family, and then if there’s been a change in our status I’ll be sure to let everyone know.”
The filing deadline is June 24. Lopez-Cantera says if Rubio decides to enter the race, he will not file the paperwork to run against him.
Lopez-Cantera isn’t the only competition, however, as four other Florida Republicans have already launched campaigns to compete for Rubio’s seat as well. Rep. David Jolly says he will bow out if Rubio decides to run, and Rep. Ron DeSantis has not commented either way. But two other challengers, who are both wealthy political “outsiders”, Carlos Beruff and Todd Wilcox, have both said that they do not intend to back down even if Rubio does run.
A spokesperson for Beruff’s campaign said Florida voters want “real world experience more than political experience,” and that “they’re sick of career politicians in Washington who only care about holding on to power.”
Jolly is irritated with national GOP leaders for interfering with the Florida race by calling for Rubio to run for re-election, as it is causing donors to withhold their funds while waiting for Rubio’s final decision.
In a recent poll, Rubio got a 32 percent approval rating, indicating his support among voters has fallen considerably.
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