Mack slaps Nelson as one of Obama’s ‘lockstep liberals’by John Kennedy | November 29th, 2011
Tarring Democratic opponent Bill Nelson as one of President Obama’s “lockstep liberals”, Republican U.S. Rep. Connie Mack said Tuesday that Floridians are looking for a change in the U.S. Senate.
“It’s pretty clear to me that this country, our country, is moving in the wrong directions,” Mack said in a conference call with reporters from his Fort Myers hometown.
Mack made his candidacy official Monday night in an appearance on Sean Hannity’s Fox-TV show. Mack, first elected to Congress in 2004, is the fifth Republican in the race to unseat Nelson, who is seeking his third term.
Mack is looking to win the same seat held by his father and namesake, former Republican U.S. Sen. Connie Mack. His dad defeated Democrat Buddy MacKay in 1988 after taunting him with the phrase, “Hey Buddy, you’re liberal.” And on Tuesday, the political apple didn’t fall far from the tree.
“Bill Nelson has become one of Barack Obama’s leading guys in the United States Senate,” Mack said, deriding his Democratic rival for supporting the president’s push on health care, stimulus spending, and energy cap-and-trade legislation.
Nelson is among the “lockstep liberals in Washington” the president depends on to advance his agenda, Mack said. The Republican contender, however, disputed that he, like his father, is looking to win by demonizing liberals.
“It’s not an attempt to demonize,” Mack said. “It’s to point out the differences.”
When those close to Mack confirmed a few weeks ago that he was planning to enter the race, the congressman immediately became the favorite, according to polls.
A Quinnipiac University survey earlier this month showed Mack with a formidable lead over the four Republicans already in the race. A Rasmussen Reports poll also showed Mack could be trouble for Nelson, with the congressman favored by 43 percent of voters to 39 percent for the Democrat. The survey of 500 likely voters had a margin-of-error of plus-or-minus 4.5 percent.