U.S. Rep. Allen West plans to run for re-election instead of seeking his party's nomination for Senate from Florida, even though other Republicans have pressed him to try to unseat Democratic Sen. Bill Nelson.
“Over the last several weeks, numerous leaders of the Florida Republican Party, including current and past elected officials, have spoken to me about the race for the United States Senate,” West said in announcing his decision this afternoon. “Out of respect, I was willing to listen.”
West acknowledged the need to defeat Nelson because he and Majority Leader Harry Reid “are not acting in the best interests of Floridians and the American people.”
However, the freshman lawmaker said, “In November of 2010, the citizens of the 22nd Congressional District sent me to Capitol Hill to right our fiscal ship of state, to work to rebuild our economy and to create jobs.
“For the last two weeks, I have traveled the congressional district and spoken clearly to the citizens that while we have made progress these last seven months, there is still so much to accomplish for our country. I believe the place where I can best effect the needed change is from the people's House — the House of Representatives.”
In passing up the Senate bid, he said, “With regard to my future, the only goal I have is to do my very best to represent the constituents of the Congressional District and to restore the exceptionalism of our nation."
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