Rep. Stephanie Murphy (D-Fla.) doesn't know yet if she will run against Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) in 2022, but if she decides to throw her hat in the ring, Murphy will enter the race with experience defeating an incumbent Republican.
In 2016, Murphy, who represents Florida's 7th Congressional District, beat the 12-term incumbent, Republican John Mica. Both of Florida's senators are Republicans and the state twice went to former President Donald Trump, but Murphy told CNN on Wednesday she "firmly" believes that "Florida is not a red state, it's a hard state. You have to have the right money, message, and machine to compete and after a few disappointing election cycles, it's clear that we've fallen short."
She has launched a new initiative called Cast Forward, which aims to get Democrats energized and ready to vote in 2022. As part of the effort, Murphy hired Lauren Calmet, former political director of the Florida Democratic Party, to run the initiative, and has also spoken with Georgia voting rights activist Stacey Abrams. Murphy will embark on a listening tour, where she will discuss with Floridians everything from climate change to social justice, and on Wednesday, she released a video talking about her life, including how her family was rescued by the U.S. Navy while fleeing Communist Vietnam.
Murphy, co-chair of the centrist Blue Dog Coalition of House Democrats, is still just considering running against Rubio, but was quick to call him out on Wednesday, telling CNN he has "made it apparent to everybody that the only person he cares about is himself. He'll do anything or say anything to stay in power and I think that's unfortunate." Catherine Garcia