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Miami Beach Mayor Philip Levine endorses Patrick Murphy for Senate

Murphy favored to win Democratic nomination, battle Rubio in general election

MIAMI BEACH, Fla. – The winner of the U.S. Senate Democratic primary in Florida won't be decided until Tuesday, but one candidate received an endorsement Thursday from the mayor of Miami Beach.

"I would like to announce my complete, 100 percent support for Congressman Patrick Murphy," Mayor Philip Levine said at a news conference Tuesday.

The Democrat, who may one day run for governor, endorsed the congressman, who is running for senator.

"The reason I'm endorsing him (for) United States senator is that I know when he becomes a senator, he will be in Washington," Levine said. "He will show up for the job."

Levine's statement was a dig at U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Florida, who missed a record number of votes when he was running for president. Rubio is now running for re-election, even though he said he wouldn't, and polls indicate that he'll be an easy winner in the primary over homebuilder and best-chance Republican challenger Carlos Beruff.

In the presidential debates, Rubio called eventual Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump a con man who shouldn't have access to nuclear codes, but he's endorsed Trump and said he'll vote for him.

"He brags about not liking the job and how ineffective the Senate is, tells everyone that Donald Trump is a con man, that, you know, he fears if he's ready or not for this job, but then he endorses him," Murphy said.

Murphy, a second-term congressman from Jupiter, is the favorite to beat U.S. Rep. Alan Grayson, D-Florida, for the Democratic Senate nomination.

A new Mason-Dixon poll shows Murphy narrowly trailing Rubio, 46 percent to 43 percent.

"I look forward to debating Sen. Rubio because there's going to be a very sharp contrast there and where we stand on the issues," Murphy said.

He'll have to get past the primary first.


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