TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (Legal Newsline) - Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush has thrown his support behind state Attorney General Bill McCollum, who is running for governor next year.
Bush, the state's governor from 1999-2007, said Tuesday he wants to see McCollum replace Charlie Crist, who is running for U.S. Senate. Should McCollum win the Republican nomination, he'd likely face Democrat Alex Sink, the state's chief financial officer.
"I am proud to support my friend Bill McCollum as Florida's next governor. At this critical time in our state's history, we need a chief executive who will meet our challenges head on and stay true to the core conservative principles of limited government, fiscal discipline and the protection of liberty tempered by personal responsibility," Bush said.
"Bill McCollum is a tested and accomplished leader who will tackle the tough decisions with the commitment and focus expected from the CEO of government in the nation's fourth-largest state. Florida needs Bill McCollum, and I will work hard to ensure he is elected our next governor."
McCollum succeeded Crist, also a Republican, as attorney general in 2007. Polls have shown McCollum with a lead over Sink.
State Sen. Paula Dockery recently announced that she, too, will run for governor, telling The Associated Press that she plans on filing her candidacy papers. She is a Republican.
Other current state attorneys general planning to run for governor in 2010 are South Carolina's Henry McMaster, Georgia's Thurbert Baker, California's Jerry Brown, Pennsylvania's Tom Corbett, Rhode Island's Patrick Lynch, Oklahoma's Drew Edmondson and Michigan's Mike Cox.
Former Virginia Attorney General Bob McDonnell resigned his post earlier this year to concentrate on his gubernatorial campaign. Virginia's Election Day is Tuesday.
From Legal Newsline: Reach John O'Brien by e-mail at email@example.com.