Meek calls U.S. Senate petition drive ‘victory before the victory’by Dara Kam | March 29th, 2010
U.S. Rep. Kendrick Meek‘s campaign today filed 145,000 signatures gathered in his year-long petition drive for the U.S. Senate race in November.
Meek, a Miami Democrat, needs about 112,000 of those signatures validated to make it onto the November ballot.
Florida law allows candidates to qualify by petition in lieu of paying $10,000 filing fee to get on the ballot.
If the signatures meet muster, Meek, a former state legislator, would be the first statewide candidate to qualify by petition.
Meek’s candidacy has been eclipsed by the GOP primary battle between Gov. Charlie Crist and former House Speaker Marco Rubio, who sparred in a nationally televised debate for the first time on FoxNews yesterday.
But he said his statewide travels to collect many of the petitions personally will give him a leg up in November.
“I have listened to the people of the state of Florida which is documented,” he told reporters on a conference call this morning. “We are taking it from an approach that no other statewide candidate has done. We will get our recognition media-wise for being a major player in this election cycle…We think we’re in a good position to spring into the forefront of this U.S. Senate campaign at the appropriate time but we are seven months away from the election.”
The conference call ended on a light note when Meek was asked who paid for a pedicure the former state trooper was reported to have last week, eliciting a comparison to Rubio’s $145 campaign spending at a barber shop that Crist posited was for a “back wax.”
McClatchy Newspapers reporter Lesley Clark’s question about the pedicure was met with a prolonged silence. Meek finally responded, saying another call temporarily cut him off.
“If anyone has any recommendations where I can get the corn filed down on my right pinkie toe for less than $25 I would like to know,” Meek quipped. “I paid for it.”