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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Connie Mack will not run for his old seat

29

January

Former U.S. Rep. Connie Mack will not seek his old congressional seat, vacated this week by Trey Radel, an aide says.

"In the weeks, months and years ahead I will continue to advocate for our shared principles, not as a candidate or member of Congress," Mack said in a news release prepared by his office, "but rather as a private citizen.

Radel, 37, resigned Monday, facing a House ethics investigation, a growing group of primary challengers and the steady drumbeat of a Republican establishment calling for him to step down. He recently completed rehab for cocaine and alcohol abuse, and pleade guilty to cocaine-possession charges last year.

Mack held the U.S. House seat from 2005 to 2013. In 2012 he ran for the U.S. Senate against incumbent Bill Nelson and lost. He announced his divorce from his second wife, U.S. Rep. Mary Bono, in May.

The full statement:

“Trey Radel’s resignation from Congress has put Southwest Florida at the beginning of a new and important political chapter.

“I spent my tenure in Congress fighting for Southwest Florida’s shared conservative values and for the fundamental belief that freedom is the core of all human progress.

“I introduced new policy ideas, like the Penny Plan, that would balance the budget in a common-sense responsible way. I always stood for principle over politics, even on controversial issues like Arizona’s immigration law. And I did all I could to stand up for the rights of people in Venezuela and elsewhere against the dictators and thugocrats who oppress them in ways few Americans can truly understand.

“These have always been my passions. They always will be. In the weeks, months and years ahead I will continue to advocate for our shared principles,not as a candidate or Member of Congress, but rather as a private citizen. And I will do all I can to support candidates in Southwest Florida and elsewhere who champion the Penny Plan.

“I hope the people of Southwest Florida will join with me in ensuring we elect a new Representative who will represent us with the passion and grace our community and our country needs, and who will be an unwavering defender of the simple idea that freedom matters because freedom works.”

[Last modified: Wednesday, January 29, 2014 9:15am]

    

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