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Republicans say DSCC endorsement of Patrick Murphy will ‘backfire’

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Establishment Democrats endorsing Patrick Murphy in his Senate bid – including Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid – will surely backfire in 2016, predicts the National Republican Senatorial Committee.

Murphy, who is seeking Marco Rubio’s seat as Rubio runs for president, received a significant establishment endorsement Monday from the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee. Both Reid and DSCC Chair U.S. Sen. Jon Tester of Montana have given PAC money to the Jupiter Democrat’s campaign.

NRSC’s email blasting the endorsement comes with the header that calls Murphy “privileged Patrick.”

“Congressman Murphy might believe that having Harry Reid’s endorsement will score him points with his Washington friends,” said NRSC spokesperson Matt Connelly, “but it will backfire with Florida’s families who want an independent leader who will help grow our economy, protect our country and get our fiscal house in order.”

So far, Murphy is the only Democrat in the race and is the clear leader with both state and national Democratic parties. U.S. Rep. Alan Grayson, the opinionated progressive from Orlando, also indicated he would “probably” enter the race. Grayson – a liberal favorite – has a record that could appeal to the left in a primary, but may not be as popular with moderates.

“Regardless of what Democrat wins the primary,” Connelly added, “their record will be far out of step with Floridians looking to strengthen the middle class and protect Medicare.”

In Monday’s endorsement, Tester called Murphy, from Florida’s 18th Congressional District, “one of our party’s most promising rising stars” and “the strongest candidate to win the Florida Senate race.”

As the Democratic race for Senate takes shape, the list of Republicans interested in succeeding Rubio shrinks. The most prominent name on the list of possibilities is now U.S. Rep. Ron DeSantis, the Tea Party Republican from Ponte Vedra Beach.

Phil Ammann is a St. Petersburg-based journalist and blogger. With more than three decades of writing, editing and management experience, Phil produced material for both print and online, in addition to founding His broad range includes covering news, local government and culture reviews for, technical articles and profiles for BetterRVing Magazine and advice columns for a metaphysical website, among others. Phil has served as a contributor and production manager for SaintPetersBlog since 2013. He lives in St. Pete with his wife, visual artist Margaret Juul and can be reached at [email protected] and on Twitter @PhilAmmann.

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