Florida Gov. Scott Says Nelson Challenge ‘An Option’

Would be first to have won on statewide level to challenge Nelson

Republican Florida Gov. Rick Scott acknowledged running for the U.S. Senate for the state of Florida is an option in 2018, as term limits will restrict him from seeking re-election as governor. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)
Republican Florida Gov. Rick Scott acknowledged running for the U.S. Senate for the state of Florida is an option in 2018, as term limits will restrict him from seeking re-election as governor. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)
Posted November 16, 2016 at 1:10pm

Florida’s term-limited Gov. Rick Scott indicated that he’s considering running for the Senate seat in 2018 against incumbent Democrat Bill Nelson.

“It’s an option I have. But right now, my whole focus is how do I do my best job as governor,” Scott said in Orlando during the annual conference of the Republican Governor’s Association, the Tampa Bay Times reported. 

Scott, an avid Donald Trump supporter during the presidential campaign, said he is excited by what he hopes to accomplish with Trump in the White House. He still has more than two years in office.

“If you didn’t embrace Trump, I would embrace him. I would figure out how to help him be successful,” Scott said.

Still, his open-ended answer to the question of running for the Senate is a departure from his ducking the question in the past, Politico pointed out. 

Nelson has won three consecutive Senate races, but against weaker opponents than Scott, who would be Nelson’s first challenger to have won at the statewide level.