Rep. Connie Mack IV will enter the Senate race in Florida, the Republican’s chief of staff confirmed to Roll Call late Wednesday.
“Connie is running and is confident he will beat liberal Senator Bill Nelson,” Jeff Cohen said in an email. “There will be a more formal announcement in the weeks ahead, but in the meantime he is making calls, assembling a team and preparing to run and win.”
The Miami Herald first reported Mack’s decision to run Wednesday, citing senior adviser David James. Mack has also informed National Republican Senatorial Committee Chairman John Cornyn (Texas) about his plans.
Mack had endorsed state Senate President Mike Haridopolos against former state House Majority Leader Adam Hasner, former Sen. George LeMieux and retired Army officer Mike McCalister in the primary. But Haridopolos dropped out of the race less than a month later, citing conflicting responsibilities between his state Senate duties and his campaign.
Former Ruth’s Chris CEO Craig Miller entered the GOP primary after Mack’s endorsement, but he is not seen as a serious contender by establishment Republicans.
Mack, a four-term House Member, brings statewide name recognition to the race. Nelson succeeded Mack's father and namesake, Connie Mack (R), in the Senate. The younger Mack, married to fellow Rep. Mary Bono Mack (R-Calif.), had $348,000 in cash on hand at the end of September, all of which can be transferred to a Senate campaign.
From left, Lisa Peng, daughter of Peng Ming, Grace Ge Geng, daughter of Gao Zhisheng, and Ti-Anna Wang, daughter of Wang Bingzhang, hold pictures of their imprisoned fathers during a House Subcommittee on Africa, Global Health, Global Human Rights, and International Organizations hearing in the Rayburn House Office Building titled “Their Daughters Appeal to Beijing: ‘Let Our Fathers Go!’”
Each year since 1990, CQ Roll Call has reviewed the financial disclosures of all 541 senators, representatives and delegates to determine the 50 richest members of Congress. This year's report, derived from forms covering the calendar year 2012, shows it took a net worth of $6.67 million to crack the exclusive club.