Deutch Running for Congress, Triggers Chain Reaction
Boca Raton Sen. Ted Deutch jumped into the race Thursday to succeed U.S. Rep. Robert Wexler, whose decision to leave Congress is triggering a scramble among South Florida Democrats.
Deutch, serving his first term in the Senate, said he would bring to Congress the “same strong work ethic and common sense” that he employed in Tallahassee. Also in the race is former Broward County commissioner and legislator, Ben Graber, while Sen. Jeremy Ring, D-Margate, and West Palm Beach Mayor Lois Frankel are eyeing a run.
Wexler, who is joining a Middle East think tank, doesn’t plan to leave Congress until January. And with Florida law no longer requiring candidates to resign their current office to run for Congress, there’s not much risk in running.
“Nobody has anything to lose,” said Rep. Ari Porth, D-Coral Springs, who for now is only watching the dominoes, but could launch his candidacy to succeed Ring – if he runs for Wexler’s seat.
Similarly, Senate wanna-be’s have emerged for Deutch’s Palm Beach-Broward district.
“I think I’d be a perfect fit for the Senate seat,” said Rep. Maria Sachs, D-Delray Beach, whose House district includes a large portion of Deutch’s district. “It’d be a natural. But I’ve been making calls to club presidents and homeowners’ associations. I’m doing my due diligence.”
Former Rep. Irv Slosberg, a Boca Raton Democrat, said he’s looking at both a congressional or state Senate run.
“I’m keeping my options open,” Slosberg told the News Service of Florida. “I think I have time to make up my mind and I’m looking at everything.”
Gov. Charlie Crist has not set a date for the special election for the Wexler seat, and, given the congressman’s planned January departure, may not make such a move for months.