Candidate, Armed Guards Removed From Murphy-Rubio Debate

Independent candidate Bruce Nathan did not have a ticket

Republican Sen. Marco Rubio and Democratic Rep. Patrick Murphy were the only two candidates invited to the Florida Senate debate Monday. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)
Republican Sen. Marco Rubio and Democratic Rep. Patrick Murphy were the only two candidates invited to the Florida Senate debate Monday. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)
Posted October 18, 2016 at 8:36am

An independent candidate in the Florida Senate race and his armed security detail were escorted out of a debate at the University of Central Florida in Orlando on Monday night.

No arrests were made, but the candidate — later confirmed to be Bruce Nathan, who is running with no party affiliation — did not have a ticket, and his guards were told to leave campus. 

Firearms are not prohibited on college campuses under Florida law unless they are locked in a car, the Orlando Sentinel reported. 

[Independent Candidate Sues to Get in Florida Senate Debates]

Nathan posted a video of his attempt to enter the debate hall on his Facebook page. He told Orlando’s CBS affiliate WKMG-TV that if he had been let in, he would have tried to get on stage with the two major-party candidates, Republican incumbent Sen. Marco Rubio and his Democratic challenger, Rep. Patrick Murphy. But he also said he would have settled for sitting in the crowd if asked. 

Nathan is one of four independent candidates running, along with six write-in candidates, the Sentinel reported. The race also features Libertarian Party nominee Paul Stanton.    

The Rothenberg & Gonzales Political Report/Roll Call rates the race as Leans Republican