Florida Sen. Marco Rubio, who for months has vowed not to seek re-election this year, indicated in a radio interview Monday that the Orlando terror attack has him re-thinking his future.
Speaking with radio host Hugh Hewitt – who during the interview urged Rubio to run – the senator stressed that he has not thought about the attack “from a political perspective” and reiterated that running is “not part of our plan as a family.”
Still, the former Republican presidential candidate said the attack is another indication of how the country is at a “tipping point” with all the foreign policy challenges ahead.
“It really gives you pause to think a little bit about, you know, your service to your country and where you can be most useful to your country,” Rubio said.
Pressed by Hewitt on whether he’d consider mounting a Senate run, Rubio said: “My family and I will be praying about all this, and we’ll see what I need to do next with my life in regards to how I can best serve.”
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All along, Rubio has said he’s not interested in running, citing as one reason the fact that his friend, Lt. Gov. Carlos Lopez-Cantera, is seeking his Senate seat. Rubio mentioned that consideration again on Monday.
But GOP leaders for weeks have been trying to lure Rubio back into the race, worried about whether anyone in the current crop of primary candidates can hold down the seat in November for the Republicans.
According to a Politico report, fellow Senate candidate Rep. David Jolly is considering whether to drop out and simply run for re-election in the House. It’s unclear what he’ll decide, but he told Politico in a statement that if Rubio entered the Senate race, “I would withdraw” and support Rubio.
Rubio’s office has not returned a request for comment regarding his interview Monday with Hewitt.