Politics

Debbie Wasserman Schultz rules out 2016 Senate run

U.S. Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz announced Tuesday that she’ll seek reelection and not run for the U.S. Senate. She is shown here at a news conference in December.
U.S. Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz announced Tuesday that she’ll seek reelection and not run for the U.S. Senate. She is shown here at a news conference in December. EL NUEVO HERALD

There will be no Debbie Wasserman Schultz for Senate campaign, the Democratic National Committee chairwoman said Tuesday. She will instead seek reelection to her South Florida congressional seat in 2016.

“I will be running for reelection in the United States House of Representatives and serving my full, four-year term that President Obama has asked me to serve as chair of the DNC,” she told CNN.

Her office declined an interview request from the Miami Herald. The congresswoman, who has been in Congress since 2004, lives in Weston and represents a heavily Democratic district that extends south to Miami Beach.

Her announcement Tuesday came a day after she had declined to say if she was thinking about a Senate candidacy.

Political chatter about her interest waned after a public feud with Orlando trial attorney John Morgan over his push to legalize medical marijuana. Last month, Wasserman Schultz denied Morgan’s claim that her office had offered to support a tweaked medical pot constitutional amendment if Morgan stopped criticizing the congresswoman.

She said Monday she still has not met or had any discussions with Morgan on the subject — a sign that a Senate run probably wasn’t imminent.

Her announcement comes the day after former Florida Gov. Charlie Crist also said he, too, won’t run for Senate. The two decisions pave the way for U.S. Rep. Patrick Murphy of Jupiter to launch his campaign. He’s expected to do so next week. U.S. Rep. Alan Grayson, a Democrat from Orlando said Tuesday it’s more likely he’ll run now that Wasserman Schultz won’t.

“I’m going to take my time and not rush into anything,” he told the Herald. “The election is a long, long time from now.”

Republican Sen. Marco Rubio appears ready to forgo reelection to make a presidential bid. Several others in the GOP have quietly expressed interest in Rubio’s seat if he leaves it. Among those said to be eying it are state Chief Financial Officer Jeff Atwater and Lt. Gov. Carlos Lopez-Cantera.

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