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7 candidates on ballot for U.S. senator

A Democrat, a Republican, a Libertarian and four independents are running to be Florida junior member of the U.S. Senate.

Basil Dalack | Tony Khoury | Steven Machat | Patrick Murphy | Bruce Nathan | Marco Rubio | Paul Stanton


Basil Dalack

Party: No party affiliation

This candidate has not returned the News4Jax candidate survey.

Hometown: Tequesta

Campaign website: BasilDalackForSenate.com


Tony Khoury

Party: No party affiliation

This candidate has not returned the News4Jax candidate survey, but did  make a video statement.

Candidate information from other sources:

Age: 57

Candidate's family: 2 children: Anthony, Kristen

Hometown: Coral Gables

Campaign website: Khoury4Florida.com


Steven Machat

Party: No party affiliation

This candidate has not returned the News4Jax candidate survey.

Hometown: Miami

Campaign website: Machat4Senate.com


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Patrick Murphy

Party: Democrat

Age: 33

Candidate's family: 

Hometown: Palm Beach Gardens

Religion: Catholic

Occupation: Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Florida's 18th district

Education: Bachelor's degree in Business Administration from the University of Miami with a double major in Accounting and Finance

Political experience: Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Florida's 18th district (2013 – Present)

What do you see as the top three issues in this race?

  • Strengthening our Middle Class: While our economy has improved under President Obama, our middle class is still hurting.
    In the U.S. Senate, I will stand with Florida's middle class families to raise the minimum wage to $15 an hour, make sure women earn equal pay for equal work, and have paid family medical leave. Small businesses are the foundation of Florida's economy and I will work to cut bureaucratic red tape to enable them to thrive. I will also work to create jobs by investing in infrastructure, manufacturing, and new industries like clean energy.
  • Protecting Social Security and Medicare for our Seniors: After a lifetime of paying into Social Security and Medicare, our seniors have a right to these vital programs and I will always fight to strengthen and protect them. I will oppose all benefit cuts to Social Security, including privatization, raising the retirement age, means testing, and cutting cost-of-living adjustments. On Medicare, I will preserve seniors' freedom to choose their own doctor, their own health plan, and their own pharmacy.
  • Combating Climate Change: Climate change is a serious threat to our way of life and Florida is directly impacted. In the U.S. Senate, I will fight to protect our environment and push for investment in green energy. I will oppose offshore oil drilling along Florida's coast, fracking in the Everglades, and seismic testing in our waters.
  • How can you help voters in a way that others running for this office cannot?
    Florida deserves a Senator who will show up to work, lead on the issues that matter, and will always put Floridians above their own political ambitions. I believe that my record and my values demonstrate that I will be a Senator who puts Florida first.

    During my two terms in the House, I have been able to get things done by working with anyone if it's right for Florida. I secured nearly $2 billion in funding for the Everglades, passed a bill to lower the cost of flood insurance, and led an effort to stop cuts to Medicare Advantage. I will continue making the best interests of Floridians my top priority in the U.S. Senate. In the U.S. Senate, I will always fight for our shared progressive values, like defending a women's right to choose, advocating for criminal justice reform, and fighting to protect our environment.

    This election is critical for Florida families. The Supreme Court hangs in the balance, the gap between the rich and the poor continues to grow, and we must protect Social Security and Medicare for our seniors. Floridians deserve a leader in the Senate and if elected, I will show up and fight for Florida every day.

    What would you hope to be remembered for accomplishing after serving in this office?
    Strengthening Florida's middle class families will always be my top priority. That means fighting for our workers. The minimum wage has not increased with inflation and it is time we change that. I support a $15 minimum wage to ensure that Floridians working full time can support themselves. Florida women also deserve to earn equal pay for equal work. This is the 21st century and it is deeply disappointing that women still make less than men.

    To strengthen the middle class, we must invest in education. Access to high quality education is one of the best ways to give all Floridians access to the middle class and to prepare our state for the industries of the future. We need to make pre-k universal, to increase teacher pay to retain top talent, and to reduce student loan debt and work towards debt-free college.

    We must also create new jobs. Florida needs to adapt and grow its economy by becoming a center for green energy innovation. We need to invest in infrastructure shore up our bridges and roads and provide the foundation for the high-tech economy of the future. Finally, we need to protect the industries that have always been vital to Florida's economy. In the U.S. Senate, I will promote small business, protect our environment to keep our beaches and water beautiful for our tourism industry, stand with Florida's farmers, and fight for fair trade.

    Florida's middle class needs a fighter in the U.S. Senate. These issues are too important for the voices of Floridians not to to be heard. If elected, I will show up and stand up every day and work hard for Florida families.

    Campaign Website: MurphyForFlorida.com

    Facebook and/or Twitter pages: Facebook.com/PatrickMurphyforSenate | @PatrickMurphyFL

    ErnieRivera.com


    Bruce Nathan

    Party: No party affiliation

    Age: 55

    Candidate's family: Wife and 6 children

    Occupation: Physical Therapist

    Education: Bachelor's of Physical Therapy and Bachelor's of Psychology

    Political experience: None

    What do you see as the top three issues in this race?

  • Education reform
  • Decrease in jobs
  • National Security/Veteran's Affairs

  • How can you help voters in a way that others running for this office cannot?

    I can offer real results, not empty promises like the party politicians do.

    What would you hope to be remembered for accomplishing after serving in this office?

    Educational reform so our children can grow up with a proper education.

    Campaign website: BruceNathan2016.com

    Facebook and/or Twitter pages: Bruce Nathan 2016


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    Marco Rubio (incumbent)

    Party: Republican

    This candidate has not returned the News4Jax candidate survey.

    Candidate information from Associated Press:

    Age: 45

    Residence: Miami

    Family : Married, 4 children

    Religion: Southern Baptist

    Education: B.A., University of Florida, 1993; J.D., University of Miami, School of Law, 1996

    Career: Member of the Florida House of Representatives, 2000–2008; Speaker of the Florida House of Representatives, 2006–2008; United States Senate, 2011-present

    Campaign website: MarcoRubio.com


    Paul Stanton

    Party: Libertarian

    This candidate has not returned the News4Jax candidate survey.

    Hometown: Deland

    Campaign website: Stanton2016.com