[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/02/09/art.joes.gi.jpg caption="Joe Scarborough is considering a run for Senate."](CNN) - MSNBC host Joe Scarborough, a former Republican congressman, is leaving open the possibility of running for outgoing Florida Sen. Mel Martinez's seat in 2010.
The host of "Morning Joe" told the Sarasota Herald Tribune he's been fielding calls from several Florida Republicans urging him to run. "I haven't closed it off," he told the paper in an article published Monday. "I've been getting some calls from some fundraisers in Florida."
But Scarborough added he may have more influence now as a cable talk-show host than as Florida's junior senator.
Still, the race may be among the most high-profile and hard-fought Senate battles in 2010. Since former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush announced earlier this month he was not interested in running for the seat, state Republicans have been looking to field another high-profile candidate. Democrats are also scrambling to find a well-known candidate after Alex Sink, the state’s chief financial officer, said she would not run.
But Scarborough, who served as a congressman for six years in one of Florida's most conservative districts, angered many in his party during the 2008 election for not appearing to support the GOP more enthusiastically.
"I have been bashing my party more than the Democratic Party because I want to make sure that I am fair and down the middle," Scarborough said last year.