Sen. Mel Martinez will have considerable time to ponder faith, family and country as a private citizen.
Has the world gone mad or is Sarah Palin a trendsetter? Florida’s Republican Sen. Mel Martinez has announced he will step down after Congress’ August recess, claiming that his priorities of “my faith, my family and my country” suggest it’s time for him to retire from public life. Rumors are circulating that “family problems” are behind his premature exit.
Sen. Mel Martinez told friends and supporters Friday in an e-mail that he’ll step down from the Senate as soon as a replacement is appointed to fill out his term.
“My priorities have always been my faith, my family and my country and at this stage in my life, and after nearly twelve years of public service in Florida and Washington, it’s time I return to Florida and my family,” said Martinez, who had already ruled out a run for re-election in 2010.
In an extraordinary turn of events, Gov. Charlie Crist, the leading Republican to replace Martinez in the U.S. Senate, will have the power to appoint someone to fill the remainder of Martinez’s term.