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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Marco Rubio's big 2016 decision



Sen. Marco Rubio has alluded to the decision that faces him: Does he make a run for president or seek another term in the senate?

The choice is complicated because the next presidential race coincides when Rubio's first term is up. There are practical obstacles of seeking two offices but, more important, legal ones.

"Questions about whether @marcorubio can be on FL ballot for Senate & Prez in 2016 are picking up from national media," Chris Cate, Florida's election spokesman, wrote on Twitter today. "Answer is no."

"But @marcorubio could still qualify for Senate in Spring 2016, even if he was the leading GOP prez candidate."

In an email to the Buzz, Cate elaborated:

"The timing of qualifying will depend on when the primary is in 2016. The qualifying period for US Senate will be the week 120 days prior to the primary. And yes, he could qualify at that time, even if he was believed to be the likely GOP candidate for president. (Currently, the primary is 12 weeks before Election Day, but there is a bill proposed to change it to 10 weeks prior, which is what it used to be.)

"Senator Rubio would not be an official candidate for president until after the party’s national convention. If Senator Rubio accepted his party’s nomination and the party subsequently submitted his name as its presidential candidate, he would at that time have to withdraw as a Senate candidate, if he had not done so already."

[Last modified: Monday, April 8, 2013 12:49pm]


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