On Monday, one of the most prominent social and religious conservative groups in America backed U.S. Rep. Ron DeSantis’, R-Fla., effort to win the U.S. Senate seat held by U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla. Currently running for the Republican presidential nomination, Rubio has said he won’t seek a second term in the Senate in 2016.
The Family Research Council (FRC) Action PAC endorsed DeSantis on Monday. The FRC was founded by prominent evangelical pastor James Dobson back in the early 1980s and has been very active in promoting traditional values and calling for a larger role for religion in the public square.
The FRC has been led by prominent religious conservatives including Gary Bauer, who ran for the Republican presidential nomination in 2000, and Ken Connor, a pro-life activist who ran for the Republican gubernatorial nomination in Florida back in 1994. Former Louisiana state Rep. Tony Perkins has led the FRC since 2003.
On Monday, the DeSantis campaign showcased a letter from retired Gen. Jerry Boykin, who is the executive vice president of FRC Action PAC.
“As a member of Congress, you have proven you will stand up for the Constitution and fight for the rights of the people,” Boykin wrote DeSantis. “We applaud your efforts to ensure taxpayers are not forced to violate their sincerely held religious beliefs and pay for abortions as well as your work to put Americans’ health-care in the hands of the people, not the hands of the government.”
“My thanks to FRC Action for the endorsement and I am pleased that the campaign is attracting the support of those who advocate for a culture of life and a strong society,” DeSantis said. “In the Senate, I will continue to advocate for the elimination of Common Core, protection of religious freedom, and repeal of Obamacare.”
DeSantis faces U.S. Rep. David Jolly, R-Fla., Lt. Gov. Carlos Lopez-Cantera and businessman and veteran Todd Wilcox in the Republican primary. Former Florida Attorney General Bill McCollum and conservative leader Dan Bongino, who ran for the U.S. Senate and the U.S. House in Maryland in recent election cycles, are considering entering the Senate primary.
Reach Kevin Derby at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow him on Twitter: @KevinDerbySSN