Politics & Government

Attorney General McCollum joins Florida's Governor race

Attorney General Bill McCollum immediately became the Republican front-runner for governor in 2010 when he officially launched his campaign Monday in Orlando with the support of his party's establishment.

If he were to win the GOP primary, McCollum would likely face Chief Financial Officer Alex Sink, a Democrat, in the general election.

McCollum was elected attorney general in 2006 when he defeated Democratic state Sen. Walter "Skip" Campbell. His two previously unsuccessful statewide bids for the U.S. Senate – against Republican Mel Martinez and Democrat Bill Nelson – have raised concerns among some Republicans about his strength as a candidate in an increasingly diverse and politically fickle state.

When he served in Congress, McCollum was wisely seen as an outspoken conservative who championed antiterrorism efforts and the impeachment of former President Bill Clinton. But his image as attorney general has been less partisan, and he sought to dispel any doubts Wednesday about his mainstream appeal.

"The hallmark of a McCollum administration will be access and inclusion," he said. "This administration will be one that doesn't look at partisan labels."

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