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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

The one Republican opponent Bill Nelson can count on: Marco Rubio



dates-rubio-nelson-275.jpgU.S. Sen. Marco Rubio says he'll stay out of the Republican primary for U.S. Senate but the nominee can count on his support in taking on incumbent Democratic Sen. Bill Nelson.

Rubio said he would help raise money for the national party but also indicated he'll campaign for the nominee. That could make for awkward times with Nelson, who quickly sought to make Rubio feel comfortable in D.C. and stressed a positive working relationship.

"Our relationship is based on what's best for the state of Florida ... whether it's NASA or some other issue, we're going to work together," Rubio said. "But to be quite frank, I'd like the Republicans to have the majority here in the Senate."

Still, he said that's a matter for another time. "I don't want talk about elections to get in the way of our ability now, especially, to work together on behalf of the state."

[Last modified: Thursday, March 31, 2011 1:25am]


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