Rep. Val Demings (D-Fla.) Will run for Senate in Florida next year, several sockets report, handing Democrats a candidate with good name recognition since they try to knock Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) , an entrenched incumbent with nationwide appeal.
Demings–that was supposed to be one of those believed to be President Joe Biden’s running mate last season –has been reportedly mulling whether to run for governor against Ron DeSantis (R) or Senate.
Her decision to run for Senate will set her up against a Republican who ran for president in 2016–winning primaries at Minnesota, Washington, D.C. and Puerto Rico–and conquered his final challenger, Democrat Patrick Murphy, by nearly 8 points.
Demings, 64, is a rising star in the Democratic Party–she had been elected to the House in 2016, and before which was the first Black female police chief in Orlando, Florida.
Demings’ announcement palms Democrats another retirement at the home. A growing record of Democratic incumbents have announced they won’t run for reelection next year, since the party seems to continue to their little majority. But, Demings won reelection in 2020 by nearly 30 points on her GOP challenger, meaning that the Orlando chair is very likely to stay in Democratic hands.
Other Democrats who toss their hat in the ring to battle Rubio. Rep. Stephanie Murphy of Florida and former Rep. Alan Grayson are rumored to be potential candidates.