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Politics

Haridopolos Backing Mack in Florida

November 2, 2011

In a role reversal, Florida state Senate President Mike Haridopolos endorsed Rep. Connie Mack's, R-Fla., Senate campaign Wednesday, just a few months after Mack endorsed Haridopolos for the same office.

"I was not exactly pleased in the direction in which the senate primary was moving," Haridopolos, told a gathering of reporters and editors at the Associated Press Florida Legislative Planning Session, according to the Palm Beach Post. "I think he'd make an outstanding senator, not just candidate...I want to see us elevate the political discussion. What has disappointed me...is there's a lot of finger-pointing. Let's elevate the debate...as opposed to the negative campaigning that's been done to this point."

Mack has not officially entered the crowded GOP primary, but his political adviser, David James, said last week that Mack will jump into the race "in the weeks ahead."

Haridopolos's endorsement is no surprise. The two are friends and earlier this year, Mack backed the state Senate president. Haridopolos would later abruptly end his bid.

The big question for Mack is whether the Haridopolos endorsement will translate into major dollars. Haridopolos raised a jaw-dropping $2.5 million in the first fundraising quarter of the year. Some have suggested that the huge haul was attributable to special interests looking to curry favor from the state Senate president during the state's legislative session. But Haridopolos has significant ties to the business community, and he still raised more than $900,000 in the second quarter.

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