State Sen. Greg Steube announced his run for Congress on Monday.
“I’m running because Washington is broken; it needs to serve the people it was intended to serve, Floridians; rather than special interests in DC,” the Sarasota Republican said in a press release.
Steube, who spent six years as a state representative for District 73 before shifting to the Senate in 2016, is running for the open seat in U.S. Congressional District 17, after Rep. Tom Rooney announced he would not seek re-election. The future vacancy opened up the possibility for many leaders to start considering the Washington job.
“As a pro-life, pro 2nd Amendment, anti-illegal immigration fighter for our constitutional rights I will proudly support Trump and his agenda in Washington and I’m proud to have the backing of Florida’s law enforcement because they know they’ll have my support,” he said.
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That backing included a list of endorsements from 30 lawmakers, sheriffs, county commissioners and special interest groups like the Florida Police Benevolent Association and Florida Citrus Mutual. Steube has support from leaders in both Sarasota and Charlotte counties, which in part make up District 17.
State Rep. Joe Gruters, R-Sarasota, previously told the Bradenton Herald that there was an “outside chance” he would consider this seat, but may consider running for Steube’s Senate seat now that he announced his congressional candidacy.
The son of former Manatee County Sheriff Brad Steube, a fifth generation Floridian and a University of Florida Levin College of Law graduate, Steube said that another important aspect as his campaign is support for veterans like himself.
“As a veteran, I have an understanding of the tough issues that those who have served our country face on a day to day basis,” he said. “We need to make sure that we provide our veterans and their families with the proper health care they deserve including accessible workforce training, and mental health counseling.”
In the wake of the Parkland high school shooting, Steube told the Bradenton Herald that he believes the solutions are to provide more funding for mental health as well as appointing “school safety officers” who have previous law enforcement or military experience.
Other legislation with Steube’s support includes moving short-term vacation rentals to state regulation over local and making daylight saving time last year-round.