Only in this election cycle could things become so unpredictable. Since the onset of his presidential campaign, Marco Rubio believed if you’re going to run for President, you should go all in. As a result, he decided he was not going to seek re-election for his Senate seat. Since leaving the presidential race in March, speculation about Rubio running has seen its fair share of media attention. From a Washington Post article noting Rubio hated his job in the Senate to a series of fiery tweets from the Senator, most everyone, including myself, believed Rubio would not run for re-election. It made sense. Rubio has been in government his whole life. He’s widely expected to launch 2020 bid in hopes of unseating Clinton and Rubio needs the private sector experience to expand his network. However, everything changed June 12, 2016.
A terrorist attack in Orlando left 49 dead and 53 more injured. It was the worst terrorist attack on US soil since 9/11. This attack left Rubio crushed. Marco had all the intention in the world to become a private citizen and spend time with his family. After the attack, Rubio noted he had to rethink running for Senate “in service to his country.” A quick word to those who scold Rubio for using this attack as a means to continue being a “career politician;” if Rubio were only thinking of himself and his future aspirations, he would not run for re-election and make double if not triple his salary in the private sector all while doing speaking events in Iowa and New Hampshire building his network of wealthy friends. Marco Rubio is running for re-election because Marco Rubio lives in service to this country. I have never seen a man give up wealth and influence only to serve a body with a 9 percent approval rating.
Rubio enters a hotly contested Senate race in Florida. My home state never fails to make headlines. Carlos Beruff, a real estate developer, Ron DeSantis, an US Representative Carlos Lopez-Cantera, the Lieutenant Governor of Florida, and Todd Wilcox, a businessman all have campaigned throughout Florida in hopes of keeping the Senate in Republican control. However, none of the them can seem to raise the money needed to run an effective operation. Recent polls show Beruff leading the primary and that might be traced to his personal bank account leading the fight. Donors, both large and small, seem to have held out for Rubio to make a definitive choice on running for his seat. Polls including Rubio have him beating out his primary opponents handedly.
It will be important for Rubio to start his campaign on the right foot. Democrats have already found their candidate, Patrick Murphy. They’re also willing to pour millions into what will probably be an ugly general. Democrats would want nothing more than to hand Rubio his second loss in one cycle. There are good signs for Rubio heading into remainder of summer and fall. Rubio, believe it or not, is actually really popular among Floridians. Yes, Rubio was handed a devastating loss in March, but presidential primaries and Senate races are completely different and Rubio knows that. He’ll also have the full backing of the Republican Party. Senior Congressional Leadership know Rubio will be one of the leading forces in the Conservative movement in the years to come and need him to succeed. In order to hold a majority in the Senate, the NRSC and allies will pour millions into Rubio’s race.
Marco Rubio is my Senator. I voted for him in March and will vote for him in August in our primary. Marco Rubio doesn’t run for office for the money or prestige. Marco Rubio runs for office to serve his constituents. His heart is in the right place and I cannot wait to do whatever I can to help Marco Rubio win re-election.