As the pundits debate whether Marco Rubio should get out of the Presidential race before the Florida Primary, the campaign released a block of Northeast Florida Republican leaders joining Congressman Ander Crenshaw and Jacksonville Mayor Lenny Curry and supporting the Senator, ahead of his rally in Nocatee Tuesday night that would seem to be a play to the “Starbucks Republicans” that make up Rubio’s establishmentarian base.
The leaders, mostly Jacksonville based, can expect some to frame the result of the vote in Duval County next Tuesday as a referendum on their leadership. Others, meanwhile, say it’s just a matter of friendship and ideological alignment.
One powerful Rubio endorser: the Jax Chamber’s man on Jacksonville’s City Council, Aaron Bowman.
“Heading into the Florida primary on the 15th, picking a candidate was an easy decision for me. I am voting for Marco Rubio and I urge my fellow Floridians to join me in supporting a leader that has spent his entire career putting conservative principles into action,” said Councilman Bowman.
It’s unfortunate that Jacksonville’s City Council meets Tuesday night, as they could have a quorum at the Nocatee rally. Council President Greg Anderson is on board with Bowman, as are Bill Gulliford, Al Ferraro, Anna Brosche, Sam Newby, Scott Wilson, and Jim Love.
Surprisingly absent from the list of backers: Council VP Lori Boyer, who did arrive at the Rubio headquarters event last week, albeit after speeches from Mario Rubio and Curry.
Also on the list, Robin Lumb, the former Duval GOP Chair, as well as current Chair Lake Ray and his House Colleagues, Charles McBurney and Janet Adkins, along with Senator Aaron Bean.
Below, a complete list of Northeast Florida supporters of Rubio. Notable is that the list is light on St. Johns County backers, especially since that is where Rubio’s rally is Tuesday evening in the Jacksonville market.
Janet Adkins, State of Florida Representative
Greg Anderson, Jacksonville City Council President
Aaron Bean, State of Florida Senator
Danny Becton, Jacksonville City Council Member
Aaron Bowman, Jacksonville City Council Member
Anna Lopez Brosche, Jacksonville City Council member
Lee Buck, Councilman Jacksonville Beach
Ander Crenshaw, U.S. Congressman
Lenny Curry, City of Jacksonville, Mayor
Keith Doherty, Jacksonville Beach, Councilman
Al Ferraro, Jacksonville City Council Member
Bill Gulliford, Jacksonville Council Member, former Council President
Jimmy Hill, Atlantic Beach, Commissioner
Chris Hoffman, Councilwoman, Jacksonville Beach
Steve Huber, District Rescue Chief Jacksonville
John Jolly, Neptune Beach Councilor
Charlie Latham, Mayor of Jacksonville Beach
Jim Love, Jacksonville City Council Member
Robin Lumb, Former Duval County GOP Chairman/ Former City Councilman
Charles McBurney, Florida State Representative
Charles Moreland, Former Jacksonville Fire Chief
Samuel Newby, Jacksonville, Council Member
Lake Ray, Florida State Representative and Duval County GOP Chairman
Mitch Reives, Mayor of Atlantic Beach
Bruce Thomason, Jacksonville Beach, Councilman
Kara Tucker, Neptune Beach, Councilor
Scott Wiley, Neptune Beach, Councilor
Scott Wilson, Jacksonville City Council Member