Democrat Miami City Commissioner Ken Russell announced Thursday his intention to challenge Senator Marco Rubio for Rubio’s Senate seat in 2022. He has served in his current post since 2015 and will likely be considered a big underdog with little statewide recognition.
(1/2) I’m Ken Russell and I’m running for US Senate to defeat @marcorubio.
— Ken Russell (@kenforflorida) June 3, 2021
Rubio, who has served as a Senator since 2010, has amassed a political and fundraising network across the state which has contributed to two successful statewide elections.
In Russell’s launch video, he said he wants to come in and “shake things up.”
“The career politicians have it all backwards,” said Russell. “Too many of those we’d hope would lead, just talk. They don’t actually do anything or build anything. I believe we should approach politics the way a woodworker looks at a project.”
In his video, Russell, a woodworker, commented he “likes to work with my hands, not talk about how big they are,” seemingly referencing when then-presidential candidate Rubio referred to then-candidate Donald Trump’s hands as small.
Russell is the son of a WWII veteran father and a Japanese mother who were small business owners eventually landing in South Florida, where Russell has also planted his family and launched a business of his own.
Russell is the second major Democrat candidate to announce their challenge to Rubio. U.S. Rep. Val Demings (D-FL-10), former Orlando police chief, gained popularity last year after being on a short-list to be then-candidate Joe Biden’s vice-presidential pick.
In his launch video, he also highlighted “senseless gun violence,” “police reform,” and “affordable healthcare” as just three of his top issues lawmakers should act on. He also included his contention of the need to reform the filibuster so “Marco Rubio and his boss, Mitch McConnell, can’t block progress on the issues Floridians care about.”
“I believe that at its best, public service is about rolling up our sleeves and solving problems together,” Russell said.
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