Mack says no to Florida Senate race

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Rep. Connie Mack (R-Fla.) will not launch a challenge to Sen. Bill Nelson (D-Fla.) next year.

“I’ve got two small children and it’s hard enough to get to spend a lot of good quality time now,” Mack told the St. Petersburg Times on Friday. “I have a wife. They are all very important to me, and at the end of the day, family has to be No. 1.”

The Florida Republican, who’s known as a strong fundraiser and was expected to be among the front-runners for the GOP nomination, said passing on a Senate bid “wasn’t an easy decision.”

Mack had an announcement on his Senate intentions set for Friday on the steps of the same Florida courthouse that his father, former Sen. Connie Mack, announced his first run for the upper chamber. Mack’s office billed the event in a release as an announcement on “the 2012 race for the United States Senate in Florida against liberal incumbent Sen. Bill Nelson.”

Full story: Mack says no to Florida Senate race