With about 10 police officers standing behind him, U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio was endorsed Saturday by the state’s main police union, the Florida Police Benevolent Association, a group that represents about 30,000 cops statewide.
It is the latest law enforcement group to back him in his reelection campaign — including endorsements from a group of 55 Florida sheriffs and the Florida Police Chiefs Association — against U.S. Rep. Val Demings. Demings, a Democrat and the former Orlando police chief, has made efforts to emphasize her law enforcement background, rebuking the movement to defund the police and promoting bills to create federal funding programs for cops.
“I don’t know of any other time when it’s been more important to support law enforcement across this country than it is right now. I think back to that summer of 2020, when it was in vogue among some to sort of go out and criticize and attack law enforcement, and talk about the need to dramatically transform it because of some instances in some parts of the country,” Rubio, a Republican, said at the Trump National Doral golf resort during a brief press conference on Saturday evening.
He was scheduled to give remarks later on at the Florida PBA gala, which was closed to press.
Steadman Stahl, South Florida PBA president, said Rubio was a “true champion” of law enforcement.
“It’s a no-brainer when it comes to picking somebody,” Stahl said. “What makes him different than any other candidate out there, it’s his track record,” Stahl said. “He’s been a true champion for law and order, which is something that’s been lacking in other parts of this country but not here in South Florida and it’s because of guys like him.”