Florida GOP Senate race still a major buzzkill

Weldon was part of the Republican House class of '94 that swept into office. He stepped down in 2008.

And he's getting into the race because he thinks that yes, both Mack and LemIeux are not conservative enough.

?He?s on the ground in Florida every day. There is no authentic conservative in the race. We?ve got two moderates fighting it out," Weldon spokesman Hogan Giddley told the Miami Herald on Friday.

Bill Nelson does not appear to be quaking in his boots at this latest entrant, nor are Washington Democrats.

A spokesman for the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee dismissed Weldon's entry as another interchangeable name who won't make much of an impact.

?The fact that there?s still so much turmoil in the Republican field six months from Election Day speaks volumes about their party?s challenges in Florida,? said Shripal Shah, a spokesman for the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee. ?Unfortunately for the GOP, Congressman Weldon is just as much of a C-lister as Connie Mack and George LeMieux. Whoever wins the primary contest will struggle running against Bill Nelson.?

On Saturday the Tampa Tribune's William March reported that in 2009, after sitting Florida U.S. Senator Mel Martinez announced he was bailing on his seat, George LeMieux convinced Charlie Crist to reverse a decision to appoint Lt. Gov. Jeff Kottkamp to the seat, using “a strategy that included direct pressure on Crist."

March listed embattled former GOP state chair Jim Greer as his primary source for the report, and predictably, Connie Mack has pounced on it, issuing a press release later on Saturday that LeMieux "may have used pressure to extort Charlie Crist into giving him a seat in the United States Senate” and compared LeMieux unfavorably to former Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich.

Need we remind you that LeMieux was Crist's chief of staff at that time, which has been a major impediment for his candidacy in a Florida Republican Party that absolutely disdains the former governor?

Meanwhile, a new Republican has entered the Senate race. Former Melbourne area Congressman Dave Weldon announced on Friday he's now running, as he unveiled a web ad that took aim at President Obama for raising the debt.

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