Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi today endorsed Donald Trump for president during a rally in Tampa.
Florida’s key winner-take-all primary (in terms of nomination convention delegates) takes place tomorrow as part of what is being called Super Tuesday 2 (or 3), depending on how you’re counting.
“We live in a changing world and we need leadership. We need someone who is unafraid to lead and restore America to its greatness,” said Bondi at the campaign event, according to the Washington Examiner.
“I ran as an outsider here in Florida and I thought Florida needed to be changed,” Bondi, a former prosecutor, added during her endorsement of Trump in her home town. “And now our country and our world needs someone who’s going to protect us.”
— Washington Examiner (@dcexaminer) March 14, 2016
Based on the Real Clear Politics average, Donald Trump supposedly has a 19-point lead over Florida Senator Marco Rubio in tomorrow’s match-up.
With his polls numbers in decline, Rubio could have opted to run for reelection to the Senate if he had dropped out of the presidential contest in time to file paperwork for another Senate run, which means either way he is leaving Congress at the end of 2016.
Reelection to the U.S. Senate for a second term probably would have been a layup for Rubio.
Trump and Ohio Gov. John Kasich are supposedly neck and neck in the presidential primary in the Buckeye State. RCP data suggests that Kasich has about a four-point lead, which is likely within the margin of error.
It remains to be seen if the chaos at the Trump political rallies over the weekend will have an affect on the voting at crunch time, in terms of changing anyone’s mind from one candidate to another.
Bondi also told those in attendance at the rally that “You are speaking loud and clear, and Americans are speaking loud and clear,” the Washington Times detailed.
“I always listen to my mom, and my mom is with Donald Trump, and so am I.”
— Mark Rivera (@markriv) March 14, 2016
Pat Bondi is taking some heat as it relates to the Trump University controversy, specifically a $25,000 contribution to her reelection committee, however, the Tampa Bay Times claimed. “The endorsement will revive questions Bondi faced in 2013 over campaign contributions she got from Trump after declining to join an investigation into Trump University, his real estate school that has faced numerous complaints.”
The Florida AG has apparently received only one complaint about Trump U. since she took office.
Donald Trump issued the following press release about today’s Pam Bondi endorsement.
“It is my great honor to receive the endorsement from a leader as highly respected as Attorney General Pam Bondi. I love the people of Florida, where over the years, I have invested my time, hundreds of millions of dollars and employed thousands of people. Pam is one of the many individuals I have formed a great relationship with and I am very proud to receive her support.”
Gov. Rick Scott has not endorsed any candidate in the Florida presidential primary, nor has any member of his cabinet apart from Pan Bondi.
“Rubio has lined up scores of Florida GOP political leaders behind him. But the list of those declining to endorse him was just as apparent, including Scott, Rubio and former Gov. Jeb Bush,” Florida Politics noted.
Pam Bondi, a foe of Obamacare, was first elected as Florida’s attorney general in November 2010 with 55 percent of the vote. She was reelected by a the same margin in 2014.
[AP Photo/Steve Cannon]