When Sen. Mel Martinez retired suddenly, Florida governor Charlie Crist appointed George LeMieux to fill the rest of Martinez’s term; key to LeMieux’s appointment was his disinterest in running for a full term for himself in 2010. Now LeMieux is thinking about running against Democrat Bill Nelson.
WEST PALM BEACH — Republican U.S. Sen. George LeMieux, whose 16-month appointment ends next month, told a Forum Club of the Palm Beaches lunch he’ll decide “pretty soon” whether or not he’s running in 2012, when Democratic Sen. Bill Nelson is up for reelection.
He was asked afterward what some of the factors will be in his decision. He mentioned his family first, then said he’ll consider who else is running.
“If I feel that there’s somebody who would do as equal or better job than me for our country, then it would be smarter for me to step aside and allow me to spend more time with my four kids who are 7 and under,” LeMieux said.
“If I look out and don’t think that there’s someone like a Jeb Bush, for example who’s going to run and I don’t think there’s someone who’s going to be a problem-solver who’s going to go to Washington not to be a career politician, but go there to do the work that’s needed and come home, that’s going to be compelling for me.”
Would Jeb Bush be interested in being a senator in 2012 when he already turned down the opportunity to run in 2010?