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Gaetz Won't Run For Rubio's U.S. Senate Seat

Florida Senate

There’s one less Republican considering a 2016 run for the U.S. Senate. As Jim Ash reports, state Senator Don Gaetz of Niceville won’t be throwing his hat in the ring.

Gaetz, a former Senate president, says his decision has nothing to do with the crowded field or the rigors of fundraising. The problem, he says, is that he would have to resign from the Legislature to run a credible campaign.

And that would stick his constituents with the bill for a special election.

“And that would cost the people of Northwest Florida hundreds of thousands of dollars and the only reason to do it would be to further my own political agenda. I don’t think that’s right, I don’t think that’s ethical, I think that would be wasteful of taxpayers’ money.”

A handful of Republicans are considered potential candidates for the seat being vacated next year by presidential hopeful Marco Rubio. They include Lieutenant Governor Carlos Lopez-Cantera, Congressman Dave Jolly, former Attorney General Bill McCollum and Congressman Jeff Miller.

Democratic hopefuls include Congressmen Patrick Murphy and Alan Grayson.

A Miami native, former WFSU reporter Jim Ash is an award-winning journalist with more than 20 years of experience, most of it in print. He has been a member of the Florida Capital Press Corps since 1992.