Carlos Beruff, a millionaire developer from Southwest Florida who is running to replace U.S. Senator Marco Rubio, made a brief – and unexpected – campaign stop in Tallahassee Monday.
Beruff’s campaign notified reporters he would be stopping at a popular North Tallahassee restaurant to address a Republican Women’s Club luncheon. But somebody forgot to tell the club.
However, quizzical looks melted into polite applause after Beruff gave a five-minute stump speech. He described being born in Miami to parents who fled Cuba twice, first from Batista and then Castro.
“I won the lottery because my mother in March 13th of 1957 was the only woman conspirator on a failed attack on the presidential palace in Havana Cuba," Beruff said.
Beruff has never held elected office and is running as an outsider. However, he has given generously over the years to political campaigns and has served on the Southwest Florida Water Management District, also known as Swiftmud, the Florida College Board and the Governor Rick Scott’s health care reform commission.
Beruff faces Lieutenant Governor Carlos Lopez-Cantera, two congressmen and businessman Todd Wilcox in the crowded GOP primary with no frontrunner.