Florida Republican backs out of Senate race
July 18th, 2011
01:05 PM ET
12 years ago

Florida Republican backs out of Senate race

(CNN) - Mike Haridopolos announced Monday he has decided to drop out of the race for the Republican Senate nomination in Florida.

The Florida state senate president, who had planned to continue his state role while running for Senate, said the responsibilities "on both fronts are in conflict."

"I truly believed I could handle both jobs, but I was wrong. Now I am determined to make it right," Haridopolos said in a video Monday. "I am announcing that I will no longer be a candidate for the United State Senate, nor will I seek any other office this year or next."

He said he will now focus his attention on completing his job in the Sunshine State.

The announcement comes after a rough couple of months for Haridopolos that included a difficult legislative session, some staff departures and allegations he was paid a large sum of money to write a book that was never published.

Although he posted strong fundraising numbers in the first three months of this year with $2.6 million, he raised under $1 million in the second quarter.

Former Sen. George LeMieux, former state Rep. Adam Hasner and former Ruth's Chris executive Craig Miller are now vying for the GOP nomination. The Republican nominee will face two-term incumbent Democratic Sen. Bill Nelson in the 2012 election.

Jahan Wilcox, a spokesman for the National Republican Senatorial Committee said the candidates still running for the seat leave them optimistic.

"In Florida, we have a wonderful slate of candidates running and remain confident that we will defeat Bill Nelson and his job-killing initiatives, like government-run healthcare," Wilcox said in a statement.

- CNN's Paul Steinhauser and Gabriella Schwarz contributed to this report.

Filed under: Bill Nelson • Florida • Senate
soundoff (9 Responses)
  1. linell, former republican, now NPA, Winter Park, FL

    There is a God...and probably a lot more about this than is being put forth...

    July 18, 2011 01:12 pm at 1:12 pm |
  2. Rudy NYC

    Barring high crimes and misdemeanors, Sen. Nelson will win his re-election in a landslide. Gov. Scott (R) will make sure of it.

    July 18, 2011 01:13 pm at 1:13 pm |
  3. gt

    anybody but that old , been there to long, dry dock nelson....nelson is spending this country into oblivion....new blood both sides...

    July 18, 2011 01:14 pm at 1:14 pm |
  4. ConservaFASCISTS/Domestic Terrorists/Taliban/Al Queda/TRAITORS

    He must have a sex scandal brewing.

    July 18, 2011 01:28 pm at 1:28 pm |
  5. Proud member of "Global Zero"

    Maybe he saw the polls that Senator Nelson will win, with my help of course, by more than 9 points. 2012 cannot come fast enough for those who did and did not show up at the both on election day 2010. Never again.

    July 18, 2011 01:38 pm at 1:38 pm |
  6. C. Howe Yulikit

    In other words: " I had no chance of winning and I would have to give up my lucrative do-nothing position to run. Besides the upcoming ethics scandal is going to be a massive time suck."

    July 18, 2011 01:41 pm at 1:41 pm |
  7. The Real Tom Paine

    How is Rick " the Fifth" Scott working out for ya? Don't you love the man who has re-defined "conflict of interest" and found new and intersting ways to revive the poll tax? Please don't tell me its to prevent voter fraud, since there are so few cases out now as to be laughable. The Kansas Secretary of State, who has made a second career out of writing conservative-approved legislation around the country( like AZ's ' paper's please' law, admitted that in a 13-year period, 7 out of 221 cases of voter fraud were sucessfully prosecuted in Kansas. One case was for electioneering, and the remaining six were for voting in states where people maintained dual residencies. I would be willing to bet similar stats are on record in other states, yet the GOP in FL is all pumped up to precent " voter fraud. The only fraud is the FL GOP masquerading as a participant in a multi-party democracy.

    July 18, 2011 01:42 pm at 1:42 pm |
  8. ED FL

    Sounds like Rubio used up all the GOP goodies and credit card funds when he had that job. Rubio got elected because he had all the Cubans in Miami cover his backside while he and his family took all the freebees. He got away with it.the current state leaders last name isn't or can be misinterpreted as a latino.

    July 18, 2011 01:44 pm at 1:44 pm |
  9. Freedom

    DEFEAT NELSON!!! I don't care which Republican is nominated, JUST SEND HIM TO RETIREMENT!!! GOP 2012!

    July 18, 2011 02:44 pm at 2:44 pm |